Wifi suggestions For Ipad Pilot (3 classrooms 40+ ipads)
I have just been informed that we will be rolling out a IPad Pilot to 40 students i have up to date been able to hold of this deployment
as we have no wifi infrastructure and are getting a new 60 class room building which we hope will be ready in 2016 ( not holding my breath as it should have been built by september this year but no groundworks have been completed yet) and because of this new building i have been told they don't want to invest in any new ICT infrastructure (as we will be getting all new stuff in the new building)
I have now been able to get them to make a compromise that we would fit out 2 to 3 classrooms with wifi for these 40 students
Im hoping to use this Ipad pilot as a opportunity to test out a system for full on deployment in the new place
what im looking for now is a suggestion on what type of system i should go for we currently have 1 Meraki AP in the staff room which works reasonably well
but would love some feedback on others such as ruckus, muru, aerohive
I would have to recommend Ruckus, can't fault them, we had it installed a few years back in our new building and it hasn't missed a beat, it just works.
Incidentally I se you listed Meru as an option, IMO you couldn't go with a worse option, I had a meru setup in our old building, and had no end of issues with it. I'm sure they are great for offices etc but for the numbers involved in Edu it just couldn't cope. Our Ruckus install was cheaper, with fewer AP's simpler to manage, faster and as I said, since day One it has just worked.
I know of a few others having issues with Meru also for similar reasons. the way they work ona virtual cell seems to cause a lot of collisions when you get 30+ laptops in close quarters, which seems to be what your going to be doing with the iPads
@smithson83 the only reason meru is on the list is because i was told last week that that the irish department of education has come out and said that meru was the best solution (i get the feeling a brown envelop might have been involved)
i know the education and training board (ETB) this school belongs to has ruckus in a number of schools and wants to get rid of them because of the high support costs but if they are the best and the cheapest then we will have to bite the bullet
another thing they did in another school was a netgear network with a single controller and 15 ap's i just dont know what kind of features it has and it has been set up by a useless technician (me being diplomatic he left this current school in shambles)
anyway will take your recommendations in consideration
any rough figures on the cost of a controller and 3 ap's ?
Xerox all the way. Their wireless arrays are brilliant with interchangeable wireless cards so you can upgrade to AC whenever you feel like it. The dashboard to manage them is also very easy and good to use! Now just got to find a way to get them in my school.... hmmm, we did have them in my old school though!
as an addendum, if these are going to be close together, you may get away with a few less, we have 12 AP's for overkillness, but even then, most of the school is one ap for every other classroom. The ap's are rated to run 100 clients each (not sure I'd like to test that though).
@smithson83 i kind of agree with you about not trying to run 100 clients over 1 ap considering its only connected to one network port @100mb/1gb speed s
@Oaktech was looking at the Unifi option and possible the 3 ap's in a box deal
i dont think i can get them to spend 2k on rukus for 3 classrooms i still need them to give me money to replace 90 win xp pc's from 2006
Although the £2k may seem expensive, nearly half of that is the controller, and when (if) you get the new building, if you went with the Ruckus (of any iteration), one you have the controller and a few ap's, when you want/need to expand, just get a licence for more AP's, throw them up, and let it rip.
If you want to test something for the new building, this is your baby
2k gets you an awful lot of Unifi - even the Pro (which I think is well worth the money for it's proper POE and gig uplinks) also, you don't need a controller. Just a quick download and away it all goes.
installed over a year ago an not had any issues. We are a 'scale' deployment of iPads. Evey pupil has an iPad mini, every staff member has an iPad, every teacher has a MacBook. 38 APs giving full internal and external coverage. We get over 1000s clients connected at any one time, with up to 200 on a single AP.
Not a fan of meru and Single Cell architecture. I saw it in use at a school and it was s l o w! Their solution of stick another AP up seems odd, but not so odd when you have to fork out another £600 for one. Clever model!