Cisco offers a comprehensive portfolio of wireless LAN products and software tools designed to enable continual connections to data and other resources and to promote teamwork among employees, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless product families include Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of wireless access points, as well as Cisco's Wireless LAN Controller plug-ins and standalone devices. Progent's certified wireless experts can enable organizations of all sizes to deploy Cisco wireless products to accommodate the current model of BYOD networks by integrating their tethered and untethered networks to achieve simplified configuration, predictable performance, single-point control, uniform policy, fault tolerance, and across-the-board security.
Cisco Converged Security Architecture for BYOD and Wired/Wireless Connectivity
The Cisco Unified Wireless Network solution can expand to as many as 18,000 wireless access points with Layer 3 mobility across central or offsite venues such as business headquarters, university lecture halls, branch offices, and telecommuter homes. Cisco's Wi-Fi wireless access points and controllers are part of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are engineered to deliver the identical level of security, performance, and manageability for WLANs that companies expect in their wired ecosystem. This architecture incorporates built-in mobile services like IP voice, HD video, and safe guest connectivity. Cisco's Unified Wireless technology enables companies to build wireless environments that streamline the way they work and improve productivity via a mobile and connected employee base.
Progent's Cisco-certified network infrastructure consulting services can provide remote or onsite support to help your organization to design, configure, manage, upgrade, and troubleshoot converged wired and wireless networks of any size and for any venue. Also, Progent can provide affordable remote and onsite Wi-Fi site surveys to help your company to design and deploy a wireless LAN with customized access point clusters optimized for your individual work area layout, building characteristics, and application workloads.
Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst Wireless Access Points (APs)
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst families of wireless access points enable organizations to integrate wired and wireless networks to provide the accessibility, capacity, performance, protection and manageability required to support practically any environment. Cisco's wireless access points start at entry-level, single-band 802.11b/g/n units with throughput of 300 Mbps designed for small companies or telecommuters to Wi-Fi 6 APs suitable for supporting hundreds of wireless clients per AP and delivering sustained data rates of more than 5 Gb. Cisco's current line of APs can be clustered to provide the capacity to support environments crowded with clients and with a high incidence of video-intense application software.
Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Family of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Series of APs are Linux-based units intended as entry-level Wi-Fi solutions for small offices. Most models in Cisco's Small Business portfolio of wireless access points support Cisco's Single Point Setup system, which allows you to configure, manage and troubleshoot a cluster of access points from a single AP via an intuitive web browser tool. All models support POE and feature QoS, rogue access point detection, and bridge mode for wirelessly connecting to another Ethernet LAN.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 AP is a wallmount, single-band 2.4GHz unit able to handle 16 802.11b/g/n clients, has a Fast Ethernet interface, allows up to four access pointss and 40 wireless clients in a cluster, and supports throughput of 300 Mbps. Cisco's WAP131 is a desktop dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11a/b/g/n AP able to handle 16 active clients on each radio for up to 32 wireless clients, features a Gigabit Ethernet port, and can support throughput of up to 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not allow AP clustering. The Cisco WAP150 is a general-purpose Wave 1 dual-radio AC/n wireless access point that features a one Gbit Power over Ethernet port and can handle 16 clients per radio with 867 Mbps performance for 802.11ac clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n devices. The Cisco Small Business WAP150 supports 4 APs per cluster.
Cisco's Small Business WAP321 Wireless-N model is a wallmount selectable-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11a/b/g/n device that can handle 80 wireless clients sharing an 8-device cluster. The Cisco WAP321 includes a GE interface and can support throughput of 300 Mbps for the activated radio. The Cisco WAP351 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11a/b/g/n wireless access point that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can handle 32 active clients per radio for a total of up to 64 active clients, and support throughput of 300 Mbps per radio. The WAP351 does not support clustering. The Cisco Small Business WAP361 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11ac access point that features a 5 x Gb Ethernet LAN switch, can support 32 clients on each radio, and delivers 867 Mbps throughput for 802.11ac clients and 300 Mbps performance for 802.11n devices. Cisco's WAP361 supports eight WAP361 access points per cluster. Cisco's wall-mountable WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-radio device that works with 802.11n and the latest 802.11ac IEEE standard. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a Gigabit Ethernet interface, can handle 32 wireless clients per radio, and eight APs per cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP561 Wireless-N Dual Radio AP includes one 10/100/1000 Ethernet LAN interface and dual radios that deliver 450 Mbps performance for each radio, can handle 64 devices per radio, and allow 16 wireless access points per cluster. Cisco's WAP551 is like Cisco's WAP 561 but has a single selectable band. Cisco's WAP571 and WAP571E (the ruggedized outdoor version) are dual-radio 802.11ac APs incorporating 2 x GE ports with link aggregation (LAG), 3x3 MIMO, and as high as 1.9 Gbps throughput with 1300 Mbps on 802.11ac and 600 Mbps on 11n. Both access points support 32 clients on each radio and 16 APs per cluster.
Cisco's WAP581 Wireless-AC Dual Radio Wave 2 AP complies with the 802.11ac standard and features 4x4 and 3x3 MU-MIMO to provide 2.8 Gbps data rates at 5 GHz and 0.6 Gbps at 2.4 GHz for a total top data rate of 2.4 Gbps. The Small Business WAP581 has an integrated 2.5G Ethernet port and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port with 802.3at Power over Ethernet (PoE). The WAP581 Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 AP can handle up to 200 connective client users, a maximum of 50 active users per radio, 16 APs per cluster, and 960 active users per cluster.
To learn more about Progent's consulting services for current and older Cisco Small Business family of WiFi APs, refer to Cisco Small Business 100, 300 and 500 wireless APs configuration and troubleshooting.
Cisco's Aironet Family of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Aironet family of wireless APs has for years been the market leading AP product. Aironet APs run the gamut from entry-level devices to advanced units. Cisco's Aironet family span several generations of models compliant with the evolving 11x specification. The current line of Aironet access points work with Cisco's Unified Wireless Network software and include 802.11ac support, which offers triple the performance as well as greater coverage and user density compared to the previous generation of devices. The current multi-band Aironet access points can handle 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients that lack 802.11ac radios.
The oldest Aironet access points are outdated units that have reached end-of-life status and are not fully supported by Cisco. Progent continues to provide technical support for the complete Aironet line of access points and can help you to manage and troubleshoot your current Aironet wireless environment or upgrade cost effectively to the latest Aironet technology. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for current and legacy Cisco Aironet wireless access points, see Aironet APs consulting.
Meraki Access Points
Cisco's family of Meraki 2.4/5 GHz indoor APs range from value-priced devices for small businesses to enterprise-class products supporting up to 5.9 Gigabit per second throughput. Each Cisco Meraki indoor AP offers next-generation features such as self-configuring installation, advanced security, BYOD support, extensive traffic analysis, zero-touch over-the-web updates, and consolidated cloud-based management for multiple sites. Each Meraki indoor AP also incorporates dual high-power client-serving radios with enhanced receive sensitivity plus a separate radio that provides (WIDS/WIPS) security for RF analysis and deep packet inspection at line rate.
Cisco's Meraki outdoor APs are IP67 certified, built to withstand harsh outdoor environments, and tested to resist dust, shock and moisture. Cisco's Meraki outdoor wireless access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and offer advanced features such as cloud-based management with network-wide visibility and control, 802.1X and native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan, 1-click guest access and isolation firewall, Layer 7 traffic shaping, plus auto-configuring mesh with MIMO. To find out more about Progent's support for Cisco's Meraki access points and management, refer to Cisco's Meraki wireless access points system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Line of Wi-Fi 6 and W-Fi 6E Access Points
Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Series 802.11ax wireless access points are designed for deployments ranging from home offices to crowded stadiums. Catalyst 9100 access points are based on the 802.11ax standard, referred to as Wi-Fi 6, which in turn builds on the previous 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) specification. Unlike 802.11ac, Wi-Fi 6 is able to use both the 2.4-Ghz and 5-GHz radio bands. Important technologies supported by Cisco Catalyst 9100 Series APs include MU-MIMO support for uplink traffic, dual NAVs for improved reliability, Target Wake Time for reduced power consumption in battery-dependent endpoints, adaptive sensitivity thresholds for better spectrum use, and extended guard intervals for improved outdoor performance. Cisco Catalyst 9100 802.11ax access points support Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller, handle up to 400 client users per Wi-Fi radio, and run on Cisco IOS XE Software.
Cisco's Catalyst 916x Series Wi-Fi 6E APs are the first Cisco access points that have the option of being managed either on-site with Cisco DNA Center or from the cloud by deploying Meraki Dashboard management utilities. This allows businesses to move to cloud-centric or hybrid deployments on their own schedule. All Cisco's Catalyst 916x access points meet the a/b/g/n/ac/ax and 6E wireless specifications and support the 6-GHz band. Each AP has 5 radios and allows a maximum of 400 clients on each radio. Each AP also contains a dedicated radio for Cisco CleanAir Pro for mitigating interference, has a USB 2.0 port, and supports Bluetooth BLE. Cisco's entry-level Catalyst 9162 Series access point is designed for small businesses, incorporates three 2x2 radios, and provides 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet support. Cisco's Catalyst 9164 Series AP is intended for small and mid-size enterprises, incorporates one 2x2 radio and two 4x4 radios, and features 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet. The Catalyst 9166 Series Wi-Fi access point is meant for large and mid-sized enterprises, has three 4x4 radios, and offers 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G/5G mGig Ethernet support. The 9166 also includes environmental sensors to detect air quality, temperature, and moisture. For more information about Progent's support for Catalyst 9100 Family of Wi-Fi 6/6E 802.11ax Access Points, refer to 802.11ax APs system planning, deployment, and troubleshooting services.
Cisco 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6-supported wireless LAN controller appliances help you manage advanced wireless environments that incorporate 802.11ax access points. 802.11ax, referred to as Wi-Fi 6, improves on previous generation 802.11ac (referred to as Wi-Fi 5) devices by providing lower latency and more predictable performance, allowing higher client user density, offering greater protection, saving energy for battery-dependent mobile devices, and allowing more flexibility for supporting the latest types of Internet-of-Things endpoints. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi controllers include always-on availability with transparent software updates, live fixes, and the ability to add wireless APs with zero service interruption. Enhanced security technologies include Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA), image signing, and Software-Defined Access (SD-Access). Streaming telemetry allows you to track and analyze infrastructure and endpoint health.
All appliances in the Catalyst 9800 family are powered by Cisco's IOS XE Software and work with Cisco's DNA Center (DNAC) or with Prime Infrastructure management tools. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 Series wireless LAN controllers can manage Cisco Aironet 802.11ac Wave 1 and Wave 2 Wi-Fi access points concurrently with Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 APs. For more information about Progent's consulting services for Cisco 9800 line of Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers, see Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6 wireless controller appliances system design, configuration, and management consulting.
Cisco Wave 2 Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 wireless controllers enable fast data exchange, configuration, administration, analysis and debugging for Cisco Wi-Fi appliances and services. Cisco offers both hardware and software-based wireless controllers for unified administration of wireless networks, but networks with a large number of Wi-Fi APs are better served by hardware-based Wi-Fi controllers. New wireless controller devices from Cisco deliver major advantages in comparison to Wave 1 and earlier models such as higher performance, concurrent support for both 1G and 10G Ethernet, enhanced application visibility and control, and advanced, built-in security.
Cisco's 3504 WiFi Controller is a value-priced appliance available in a desktop form factor and intended for smaller businesses. You can install the 3504 in a centralized network environment such as in lean branch and remote offices administered across the WAN via Cisco FlexConnect, or in mesh deployments where wiring is limited. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller can handle up to 150 wireless APs and 3,000 clients, delivers 4 Gbps throughput, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 3504 controller includes a multi-gigabit Ethernet port and four 1-GB Ethernet ports. APs can be connected directly to the WiFi controller through two Power over Ethernet ports. The 3504 wireless controller features subsecond failover for access points and users, which provides nonstop availability for applications. As with other current Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 model has the integrated ability to communicate with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WLAN controllers.
Cisco's 5520 WiFi Controller, offered in a 1 rack unit form factor, is intended for midsize to large enterprises and campus environments and can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 wireless controller can handle up to 1,500 access points and 20,000 client users, offers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 wireless controller features two 10 GE interfaces and incorporates SSD storage, redundant fans, optional backup power supplies, and subsecond failover for high availability.
Cisco's 8540 Wireless Controller, available in a 2RU package, is a top-of-the-line wireless controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 WiFi controller can be run in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments and can handle as many as 6,000 wireless APs and 64,000 client users. The 8540 WiFi controller can deliver data rates up to 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8340 comes with four 1-GB or 10GE interfaces and features solid-state storage, redundant power supplies, redundant fans, and rapid failover.
Wave 1 Cisco WiFi Network Controllers
Cisco wireless LAN controllers reduce the effort and cost required to configure, manage, and operate Wi-Fi networks by centralizing control of critical tasks like setting up wireless access points, applying single-point policies throughout converged LANs, supporting enterprise-wide QoS for voice and HD video, tracking and optimizing network health, activating wireless intrusion prevention system (wIPS) tools to defend against cyber break-ins and DDoS attacks, and managing IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless LAN controllers for businesses of any size and can provide desktop or rackmount controllers, modular plug-in controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and Catalyst switches with built-in wireless LAN controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 wireless controllers include Cisco CleanAir tools to minimize signal interference and create self-optimizing wireless LANs for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Integrated Bonjour Gateways allow discovery, advertisement and policy across WLAN, LAN and WAN for Apple-based applications. For fault tolerance, Cisco wireless controllers allow access point and client stateful failover by permitting a standby high-availability controller to synch with a main wireless controller for AP license count, CAPWAP keys, and access point CAPWAP state. In case the main wireless controller stops working, thousands of APs and clients can switchover in less than a second to the secondary wireless controller.
Cisco's Wireless Controller Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E offers entry-level 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for 2900 and 3900 routers used by smaller businesses and branch offices. This affordable and scalable module can support from five to 200 wireless access points and up to 6000 clients. (To find out concerning Progent's remote and on-premises consulting and troubleshooting support services for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting consulting.)
Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches designed for small to mid-size businesses and branches and have a built-in wireless LAN controller with the capability to support 40 Gb of wireless capacity for each switch and up to 25 wireless access points and 1000 wireless clients per switch. Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU rackmount switches intended for midsize and large organizations and include a built-in wireless LAN controller supporting up to 40 Gb of wireless throughput per switch and support for up to 50 wireless access points and 2000 clients. The WiSM2 is an add-in blade for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless network controller designed for mid-to-large size enterprises and capable of 20 Gbps throughput and with support for up to 1000 APs and 15,000 clients. (For information concerning Progent's support for Cisco switches, see Cisco switches configuration and troubleshooting services.)
Cisco 2500 Series Wireless Controllers are value-priced desktop devices that simplify the provisioning and operation of Wi-Fi networks for small and midsize businesses and satellite offices. The Cisco 2500 Series wireless network controller supports 5 to 75 access points and up to 1000 wireless clients and offers sustained performance of 1 Gbps.
The Cisco 5500 Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU unit designed for medium-sized to large businesses and campuses and can support 500 wireless access points and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps performance. The Cisco 5760 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device intended for mid-to-large campuses with the ability to manage 1000 APs and 12,000 wireless clients and delivering throughput of 60 Gbps to accommodate high client densities and high amounts of media-rich applications.
Cisco's Flex 7500 Series Wireless Controller is intended to manage massive collections of wireless branches from one datacenter, eliminating the costs of a Wi-Fi controller at each branch. The 1RU Flex 7500 appliance lets you create a private cloud to deploy, track, manage, and troubleshoot up to 6000 access points and 64,000 clients while handling 1 Gbps performance. Cisco's 8500 Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance engineered to manage Wi-Fi networks for large campuses or for service providers and can scale to support 6000 access points and 64,000 clients while delivering 10 Gbps performance.
To learn more about Cisco WiFi controllers, go to Cisco wireless controllers consulting and integration.
Legacy Cisco Wireless Access Points, LAN Bridges and Controllers Supported by Progent
The IEEE 802.11ac specification for Wi-Fi largely rendered obsolete all prior releases of Wi-Fi products for environments that support high densities of clients and high usage of HD video applications. Even for businesses who do not currently need the performance of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, a large number of Cisco wireless devices have reached end-of-sale or end-of-support status, which can pose serious maintenance and regulatory compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consulting experts offer online and on-premises support for a broad range of earlier-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can in addition assist organizations to assess the financial justification for updating up-of-date wireless technology and can help in designing and carrying out cost-effective, seamless migrations. The following are a sample of Cisco legacy wireless devices that Progent's consulting experts continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Cisco Aironet 1000/1130AG family APs are intended for offices and other venues which have little environmental instability. These devices include integrated antennas that offer predictable radio coverage patterns. The Cisco Aironet 1130G family wireless access point is designed for restricted domains that do not allow 802.11a transmission.
Aironet 1230AG/1240AG Series access points are designed for more challenging radio frequency situations like manufacturing plants or above ceiling structures which commonly call for adjustable external antennas and rugged metal cases. The Aironet 1240G family access point is available for restricted locations that do not allow 5GHz operation.
Aironet 1500 Series lightweight outside wireless mesh APs provide a cost-effective, expandable, secure outdoor wireless network solution for campus areas and for public venues that require connectivity for portable phones or computers.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless Bridges
Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer a high-performance and feature-rich technology for connecting numerous local area networks in a metro area or public access network. Cisco Aironet wireless bridges provide a flexible, easy-to-use solution that meets the security requirements of WAN professionals. These bridges handle both P2P and P2MP configurations with excellent coverage and support for traffic throughput up to 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer throughput several times faster than E1/T1 links for a fraction of the cost, avoiding the need for expensive leased lines when connecting different offices. Since bridges carry no ongoing costs, savings on connection bills rapidly pay for the startup hardware investment. Self-installed private lines and even leased lines utilizing copper or optical cable can result in considerable up-front expenses in cases where they are impeded by obstacles such as highways, railroads, or lakes and rivers. Cisco Aironet wireless bridges can be installed quickly an offer a fast return on investment.
Cisco Aironet 1300 Series outside wireless access points/bridges can be deployed as independent access points, bridges, or wireless group bridges. These products have a tough enclosure and provide fast, economical wireless interfaces between numerous stationary or mobile networks and clients.
Cisco 1400 bridges offer high-performance, dependable outside connections for LOS applications. These devices are housed in an all-weather enclosure that is optimized for harsh outdoor conditions and function within broad temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco WLAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers provide single-point management of WLANs by streamlining the handling of common technologies including intrusion prevention, real-time RF management, zero touch deployment, and full N+1 redundancy. WLAN controllers work with lightweight APs to offer enhanced performance and advanced management functions.
Cisco WLAN Controllers (WLCs) offer the control, scalability, protection, and fault tolerance that network managers require to create secure, enterprise-scale wireless solutions, from satellite locations to small businesses to headquarter campuses. Cisco's first-generation WLCs can be configured together to provide accommodation for as many as 2400 wireless access points per roaming domain.
The Cisco WLCM or WLCM-E Controller Module for IS Routers offers small-to medium businesses and enterprises a cost effective solution to implement and manage secure wireless networks at branch offices. These wireless controllers manage up to a dozen Cisco Aironet APs and are installable in Cisco 2800/3800 Series Integrated Services Routers and 3700 Series IS Routers. (To find out about Progent's remote and on-premises consulting support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and management services.)
How Progent's Consultants Can Assist Your Company with Cisco Wireless Products
Progent can provide a Cisco-certified consultant to help you to design, deploy, maintain and repair a converged wired and wireless infrastructure integrating a wide range of wireless devices that offer the same security, expandability, and manageability you demand from your wired network. Progent can assist you to maintain legacy Wi-Fi products from Cisco or upgrade efficiently to the latest 802.11ax-compatible products. Progent's CISM and CISSP security consultants can show you how to design protection into your wireless network and your company's operations. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity planning consultants can assist you to set up the high availability (HA) features incorporated into Cisco's wireless and wired products so your converged infrastructure delivers significant return on investment.
Progent's Wi-Fi Site Survey assists you to design and deploy a state-of-the-art WLAN optimized for your environment, providing a wireless solution that delivers comprehensive coverage, high speed and capacity, QoS features to support IP voice and video, advanced security, and streamlined management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be performed online to cut time and expense, or on premises for more complex situations.
For a more in-depth look at Progent's wireless consulting capabilities, visit Progent's Wireless Consulting.
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