Cisco has developed an extensive line of wireless networking products and software tools intended to enable anywhere, anytime access to data and other resources and to facilitate collaboration among workers, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless products include Cisco's Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of access points (APs), as well as Cisco's Wireless Network Controller plug-ins and appliances. Progent's certified wireless consultants can help businesses of any size to utilize Cisco wireless technology to accommodate the new paradigm of BYOD computing by integrating their wired/wireless networks to achieve easy configuration, predictable performance, single-point control, enterprise-wide policy, high availability (HA), and advanced protection.
Cisco Converged Technology for Bring-Your-Own-Device and Wired/Wireless Networking
The Cisco Unified Wireless solution can scale to as many as 18,000 access points with full Layer 3 connectivity at central or remote venues such as business headquarters, university auditoriums, branch offices, and home offices. Cisco's 802.11x access points and wireless controllers are components of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are engineered to deliver the same degree of protection, performance, and manageability for wireless networks that companies expect in their wired ecosystem. This architecture includes integrated mobility services like IP voice, HD video, and safe guest access. Cisco's Unified Wireless architecture enables companies to build Wi-Fi ecosystems that streamline the way they work and enhance productivity through a mobile and collaborative workforce.
Progent's Cisco CCIE network infrastructure consulting services offers remote or on-premises support to assist you to design, configure, maintain, upgrade, and repair converged wired and wireless network infrastructure of any size and for any venue. In addition, Progent can provide economical remote and onsite wireless site surveys to assist you to plan and deploy a Wi-Fi LAN with customized access point clustering optimized for your individual work area layout, building characteristics, and application workloads.
Cisco Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst lines of APs enable businesses to converge wired and wireless networks to provide the accessibility, density, throughput, security compliance and ease of management needed to support virtually any environment. These access points range from entry-level, single-band 802.11b/g/n units with throughput of 300 Mb designed for small companies or home offices to Wi-Fi 6 APs capable of supporting hundreds of clients per AP and offering throughput of more than 5 Gb. Cisco's current line of access points can be combined or clustered to deliver the scale to support wireless networks with high client density and with high usage rates of HD video application software.
Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Family of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business Family of access points are Linux-powered devices engineered as value-priced wireless solutions for light workloads. Most models in Cisco's Small Business line of wireless access points work with Cisco's Single Point Setup system, which allows you to configure, manage and repair a group of access points from a single device through an intuitive browser-based interface. All of the versions support Power over Ethernet (POE) and feature QoS, rogue access point awareness, and bridging for connecting to another network.
Cisco's Small Business WAP121 Access Point is a wall-mountable, single-band 2.4GHz device able to handle 16 active 802.11n clients, has a 10/100 Ethernet interface, allows up to four access pointss and 40 wireless clients in a cluster, and can handle sustained data rates of up to 300 Mbps. The Cisco WAP131 is a desktop dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11n AP able to support 16 active wireless clients on each radio for a total of up to 32 clients, includes a 10/100/1000 Ethernet LAN interface, and can support sustained data rates of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP131 Wireless-N does not allow AP clustering. The Cisco WAP150 is a general-purpose dual-radio AC/n wireless access point that features a one Gbit Power over Ethernet (PoE) port and can support 16 clients from each radio with 867 Mbps performance for AC clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. Cisco's Small Business WAP150 supports 4 APs for each cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP321 Access Point is a wallmount single-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11n unit that can handle up to 80 active clients in an 8-device cluster. The Cisco WAP321 includes a GE port and can support sustained throughput of 300 Mbps for the activated radio. Cisco's WAP351 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11n wireless access point with a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet switch and can support 32 wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 64 active clients, and deliver a data rate of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP351 does not allow clustering. Cisco's Small Business WAP361 is a dual-band 802.11ac wireless access point that features a 5 x Gb Ethernet switch, can support 32 active WLAN clients per radio, and delivers 867 Mbps performance for 802.11ac clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco WAP361 supports 8 WAP361 access points for each cluster. Cisco's wallmount WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-radio device that supports 802.11n and the new 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard. The WAP371 Wireless-AC/N has a GE port, can support 32 active wireless clients per radio, and eight APs for each cluster.
The Cisco WAP561 802.11n Dual Radio access point includes one GE interface and two concurrent radios (2.4 and 5.0 GHz) that offer 450 Mbps throughput for each radio, support 64 clients for each radio, and allow up to 16 wireless access points per cluster. Cisco's WAP551 is like the WAP 561 but features a single selectable band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). The Cisco WAP571 and WAP571E (a weather-proof outdoor version) are dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11ac APs that feature two Gb Ethernet LAN interfaces with link aggregation, 3x3 MIMO, and up to 1.9 Gbps performance with 1300 Mbps over 802.11ac and 600 Mbps over 11n. Both wireless access points can handle 32 clients on each radio and 16 APs per cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP581 Wireless-AC Dual Radio Wave 2 Wireless Access Point supports the Wi-Fi 5 standard and offers 4x4 and 3x3 MU-MIMO technology to deliver 2.8 Gbps throughput at 5 GHz and 600 Mbps on the 2.4-GHz radio for a total top data rate of 2.4 Gbps. The Small Business WAP581 has an integrated 2.5G Ethernet interface and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet LAN interface with 802.3at Power over Ethernet (PoE). The WAP581 Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 AP can handle as many as 200 connective client users, up to 50 active client users per radio, 16 access points for each cluster, and 960 active client users for each cluster.
For details about Progent's support for both current and legacy Cisco Small Business series of WiFi access points, refer to Cisco Small Business wireless APs system design and troubleshooting.
The Aironet Line of Access Points
The Aironet portfolio of indoor and outdoor wireless access points has consistently been the leading access point product. Aironet wireless access points run the gamut from entry-level devices to enterprise-class units. The Aironet series span several generations of models compliant with the continually improving 802 specification. The latest portfolio of Aironet APs support Cisco's Unified Wireless Network software and come with 802.11ac Wi-Fi technology, which offers triple the performance plus greater coverage and density compared to the prior generation of APs. The latest multi-band Aironet access points can handle 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for clients without 802.11ac capability.
The oldest Aironet access points are legacy units that have come to end-of-life status and are no longer supported by Cisco. Progent still offers support for the entire Aironet family of APs and can assist your company to manage and troubleshoot your current Aironet Wi-Fi environment or move cost effectively to the latest Aironet products. For more information about Progent's consulting services for both current and outdated Aironet wireless access points, see Cisco Aironet access points system design and troubleshooting.
Cisco's Meraki Access Points
Cisco's family of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor access points include budget-friendly models for general use to enterprise-class units that offer as high as 5.9 Gbit/sec throughput. Each Cisco Meraki indoor AP offers high-end capabilities such as plug-and-play installation, advanced security, BYOD support, built-in traffic analysis, automatic web-based updates, and unified cloud management via an intuitive dashboard. Each Meraki indoor wireless access point also includes dual powerful radios with enhanced receive sensitivity as well as a dedicated radio that offers intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) security for threat detection and deep packet inspection at line rate.
Meraki outdoor wireless access points are IP67 certified, designed to operate in rugged outdoor conditions, and tested to resist dust particles, vibration and moisture. Cisco's Meraki outdoor access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and deliver advanced features such as cloud management with multi-site visibility, 802.1X integration, built-in antivirus scan (NAC), 1-click secure guest access and isolation firewall, Layer 7 traffic shaping, plus auto-configuring mesh with MIMO. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for Cisco's Meraki access points and management tools, see Meraki wireless access points system design and troubleshooting.
Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 and W-Fi 6E APs
Cisco's Catalyst 9100 family of Wi-Fi 6 access points are intended for deployments ranging from telecommuter homes to crowded stadiums. Cisco Catalyst 9100 access points are compliant with the 802.11ax standard, known as Wi-Fi 6, which is an evolution of the preceding 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) standard. As an improvement to 802.11ac, Wi-Fi 6 is able to utilize both the 2.4-Ghz and 5-GHz bands. Important technologies incorporated in Catalyst 9100 Series APs include MU-MIMO support for uplink traffic, dual NAVs for better dependability, Target Wake Time for conserving power usage in battery-powered endpoints, adaptive power thresholds for more efficient spectrum utilization, and extended guard intervals for improved outdoor performance. Cisco Catalyst 9100 wireless access points support Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller (EWC), handle as many as 400 clients per Wi-Fi radio, and are powered by Cisco IOS XE Software.
Cisco's Catalyst 916x Series Wi-Fi 6E access points are the first Cisco access points with the capability of being managed on-premises with Cisco DNA Center or via the cloud using Meraki management tools. This allows organizations to move to cloud-centric or hybrid management environments on their own timetable. All Catalyst 916x access points meet the a/b/g/n/ac/ax and 6E wireless specifications and include support for the new 6-GHz band. Each AP has 5 radios and supports as many as 400 clients on each radio. Every AP model also comes with a dedicated radio for Cisco CleanAir Pro for reducing interference, includes a USB 2.0 port, and offers Bluetooth Low Energy. The small-footprint Catalyst 9162 Series access point is intended for small businesses, incorporates three 2x2 radios, and provides 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet support. The Catalyst 9164 Series access point is suited for small and middle-size organizations, has one 2x2 radio and two 4x4 radios, and features 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet support. The Catalyst 9166 Series AP is intended for large and mid-sized enterprises, includes three 4x4 radios, and features 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G/5G mGig Ethernet connectivity. The 9166 also comes with environmental sensors that measure air quality, temperature, and humidity. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Series Wireless APs, see Wireless APs system design, deployment, and management services.
Cisco 9800 Series 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6-compatible wireless controller appliances help you manage advanced Wi-Fi networks that incorporate 802.11ax APs. The 802.11ax standard, referred to as Wi-Fi 6, improves on previous generation 802.11ac (referred to as Wi-Fi 5) devices by providing less latency and more reliable performance, supporting higher client user density, providing greater protection, conserving energy for battery-powered mobile devices, and allowing more flexibility for supporting the latest kinds of Internet-of-Things endpoints. Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi controllers feature always-on availability with seamless software upgrades, live patching, and the ability to add access points with zero downtime. Advanced cybersecurity technologies include Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA), secure boot, and Software-Defined Access. Streaming telemetry allows you to monitor and analyze network and endpoint health.
All appliances in the Catalyst 9800 family are powered by Cisco's IOS XE Software and operate with Cisco's DNA Center or Prime Infrastructure management tools. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 wireless LAN controllers can manage Cisco Aironet 802.11ac Wave 1 and Wave 2 Wi-Fi access points as well as Catalyst 9100 Series 802.11ax Wi-Fi access points. For details about Progent's consulting services for Cisco 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers, refer to Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6 wireless controllers system design, configuration, and management consulting.
Cisco Wi-Fi 5 Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers allow realtime communication, configuration, administration, monitoring and troubleshooting for Cisco wireless devices and services. Cisco offers both hardware and software-based Wi-Fi controllers for centralized management of wireless environments, but networks with a large number of wireless APs are better served by hardware-based Wi-Fi controllers. Current generation Wi-Fi controller devices from Cisco deliver significant benefits in comparison to Wave 1 and older models such as greater performance, concurrent support for both 1G and 10G Ethernet, enhanced application visibility and control, and advanced, integrated security.
The Cisco 3504 WiFi Controller is an entry-level device available in a desktop enclosure and designed for smaller organizations. You can install the 3504 model in a centralized WLAN environment such as in small branch and home-based offices administered across the wide-area network via FlexConnect, or in mesh deployments where Ethernet cabling is limited. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller supports as many as 150 APs and 3,000 users, offers 4 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 3504 wireless controller includes a multi-gigabit Ethernet interface (up to 5 Gigabit Ethernet) and four 1-GB Ethernet connections. APs can be connected directly to the WiFi controller via two Power over Ethernet ports. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller features fast failover for APs and users, which allows uninterrupted availability for applications. Like other current Wave 2 Wi-Fi controllers from Cisco, the 3504 device has the integrated capability to communicate with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services Engine, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WLAN controllers.
Cisco's 5520 Wireless Controller, offered in a 1 rack unit (RU) enclosure, is designed to support larger enterprises and campus networks and can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures. The 5520 Wi-Fi controller can handle as many as 1,500 wireless APs and 20,000 users, offers 20 Gbps performance, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 WiFi controller features two 10 GE ports and features solid-state storage, backup fans, optional redundant power supplies, and rapid failover for uninterrupted availability.
The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller, offered in a 2RU enclosure, is a high-end WiFi controller designed to support enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 Wireless controller can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments and supports up to 6,000 APs and 64,000 users. The 8540 WiFi controller can deliver throughput up to 40 Gbps and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 8340 includes four 1-GB or 10GE ports and features SSD storage, redundant power supplies, backup fans, and subsecond failover.
Wave 1 Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco wireless controllers reduce the effort and expense required to configure, monitor, and operate Wi-Fi networks by offering single-point control of critical tasks like setting up access points, applying consistent policies across converged wired and wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service for voice and video, tracking and troubleshooting system performance, implementing intrusion prevention capabilities to guard against cyber break-ins and DDoS attacks, and handling IPv6 clients. Cisco has designed wireless LAN controllers for organizations of any size and offers standalone desktop controllers, modular add-on controllers for Cisco routers and switches, and switches with built-in wireless LAN controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 wireless controllers incorporate Cisco CleanAir technology to avoid signal interference and produce self-optimizing wireless networks for top 802.11n and 802.11ac throughput and security. Built-in Bonjour Gateways permit discovery across WLAN, LAN and WAN for Apple applications. For high availability (HA), Cisco wireless LAN controllers allow AP and client stateful failover by permitting a standby HA wireless controller to synch with a primary controller for access point license count, CAPWAP state and roaming keys, and access point CAPWAP state. In case the main controller goes down, thousands of wireless access points and clients can failover at subsecond speeds to the secondary controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for Cisco 2900 and 3900 Series routers deployed by small to medium-sized businesses and branches. This affordable and expandable solution can support up to 200 APs and as many as 6000 clients. (For information about Progent's remote and on-premises consulting support services for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting consulting.)
Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches designed for SMBs and branches and features an integrated wireless network controller with the ability to handle up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity for each switch and up to 25 APs and 1000 wireless clients per switch. Cisco Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU rackmount switches intended for mid-size and large organizations and feature a built-in wireless network controller with up to 40 Gb of wireless throughput on each switch and support for up to 50 access points and up to 2000 wireless clients. The Wireless Services Module2 (WiSM2) is a plug-in blade for Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless controller intended for mid-to-large size enterprises and able to deliver 20 Gbps throughput and with support for up to 1000 access points and as many as 15,000 clients. (To find out concerning Progent's consulting services for Catalyst switches, see Cisco switches configuration and troubleshooting services.)
Cisco 2500 Wireless Controllers are value-priced desktop devices that simplify the deployment and operation of wireless LANs for small and midsize businesses and branches. The 2500 Series wireless network controller can handle from five to 75 access points and 1000 wireless clients and can deliver sustained performance of up to 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Wireless Controller is a scalable 1RU unit designed for mid-to-large sized enterprises and campus environments and can support up to 500 APs and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps throughput. The Cisco 5760 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU device intended for mid-to-large campuses with the ability to manage up to 1000 APs and 12,000 wireless clients and offering throughput of 60 Gbps to accommodate high wireless client densities and high usage of video-intensive mobile applications.
Cisco's Flex 7500 Wireless Controller is intended to enable centralized management of thousands of wireless remote sites from a single datacenter, eliminating the costs of a wireless controller at every branch. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 appliance lets you establish a private cloud to deploy, monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot up to 6000 APs and up to 64,000 wireless clients while handling 1 Gbps performance. Cisco's 8500 Wireless Controller is a 1RU device engineered to manage wireless environments for large campuses or for service providers and can scale to support up to 6000 access points and 64,000 clients while delivering 10 Gbps performance.
To find out more about Cisco WiFi controllers, go to Cisco Wi-Fi controllers consulting services.
Legacy Cisco APs, Bridges and Controllers Supported by Progent
The IEEE 802.11ac standard for Wi-Fi largely rendered obsolete the prior generations of Wi-Fi products for environments that support high densities of clients and high incidence of video-intensive software applications. Even for organizations who do not currently need the performance of 802.11ac Wi-Fi, many of Cisco wireless devices have arrived at end-of-life status, which can represent significant service and regulatory compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consulting experts offer remote and onsite support for a wide array of older-generation Cisco wireless products. Progent can also assist companies to evaluate the business case for updating up-of-date wireless infrastructure and can assist in planning and executing affordable, seamless upgrades. The following are a few of Cisco legacy Wi-Fi devices that Progent's consultants continue to support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Access Points
Aironet 1000 or 1130AG Series access points are intended for offices and other venues which have minimal environmental instability. These devices include integrated antennas that offer dependable radio coverage patterns. The 1130G Series wireless access point is designed for restricted domains that do not permit 802.11a operation.
Aironet 1230AG or 1240AG Series APs are designed for more problematic RF situations like manufacturing plants and warehouses or above ceiling structures which typically call for adjustable protruding antennas and ruggedized enclosures. The Cisco 1240G family AP is intended for restricted locations that do not allow 5GHz operation.
Cisco Aironet 1500 Series lightweight outdoor mesh access points provide a cost-effective, scalable, protected outdoor Wi-Fi mechanism for campus areas and for public sites that need connectivity for portable devices.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco wireless bridges offer a high-throughput and multi-featured solution for integrating numerous local area networks in a metro area or public wireless environment. Cisco bridges provide a versatile, manageable solution that satisfies the security demands of wide-area networking specialists. These devices handle both PTP and P2MP implementations with excellent range and support for data throughput as high as 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless LAN bridges offer data rates substantially faster than E1/T1 links for a fraction of the cost, eliminating the requirement for costly leased lines when linking separate offices. Since bridges require no periodic costs, the expenses saved on connection bills rapidly pay for the startup equipment costs. Self-installed private lines and in some cases leased lines made of copper or optical cable often result in considerable initial costs if they are separated by barriers such as freeways, train tracks, or bodies of water. Cisco Aironet wireless LAN bridges can be deployed rapidly an offer a fast ROI.
Cisco 1300 outdoor access points/bridges can be deployed as stand-alone wireless access points, wireless bridges, or workgroup bridges. These products have a tough cover and offer fast, economical wireless interfaces between multiple fixed or mobile environments and users.
Aironet 1400 Series wireless bridges provide high-performance, dependable outdoor connections for line-of-sight (LOS) applications. These devices are housed in a durable enclosure that can withstand harsh outdoor environments and can function in broad temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers centralize the management of WLANs by streamlining the handling of common technologies including integrated IPS, fast RF control, automatic configuration, and N+1 redundancy. Cisco Wireless controllers work with small wireless access points to offer enhanced performance and advanced management capabilities.
WLAN Controllers offer the control, expandability, security, and reliability that network managers need to create secure, enterprise-scale wireless environments, from branch locations to small companies to headquarter campuses. Cisco's legacy WLCs can be clustered to offer support for up to 2400 WAPs per roaming domain.
Cisco's WLCM or WLCM-E Controller Module for Integrated Services Routers offers small-to mid-size businesses (SMBs) and enterprises an affordable solution to implement and manage secure wireless networks at branch offices. These wireless controllers supervise as many as 12 Cisco Aironet APs and are supported on 2800/3800 Routers and Cisco 3700 Series IS Routers. (For information about Progent's remote and on-premises consulting services for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting consulting.)
How Progent's Consultants Can Help Your Company with Cisco Wireless Technology
Progent can provide a Cisco-certified consultant to assist your business to plan, install, manage and troubleshoot a converged wired/wireless infrastructure incorporating a broad range of wireless devices that offer the identical protection, scalability, and ease of management you demand from a wired environment. Progent can help you to maintain legacy wireless products from Cisco or upgrade seamlessly to the latest 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 technology. Progent's CISA and ISSAP security professionals can show you how to build protection into your WLAN and into your company's processes. Progent's disaster recovery planning consultants and business continuity planners can show you how to deploy the HA technology incorporated into Cisco's wireless and wired technologies so your converged infrastructure delivers continuing return on investment.
Progent's Wi-Fi Site Survey helps you to plan and implement a robust WLAN optimized for your environment, offering a Wi-Fi ecosystem that delivers seamless coverage, high performance and capacity, Quality of Service features to accommodate IP video, advanced security, and easy management. Progent's Wi-Fi Site Survey can be delivered remotely to cut time and expense, or on premises to deal with more challenging situations.
For a more in-depth look at Progent's wireless consulting capabilities, see Progent's Wireless LAN Expertise.
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