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Wireless Networks Thread, Laptop to Wireless AP ratio in Technical; We are looking at the best way of adding more PCs to the school library. One possibility is wireless laptops, ...
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    Griffo's Avatar
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    Laptop to Wireless AP ratio

    We are looking at the best way of adding more PCs to the school library.

    One possibility is wireless laptops, so does anyone know what the suggested or average/maximum number of wireless laptops there should be per Wireless AP?

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    Jackd (16th January 2009)

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    Dom_'s Avatar
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    It's generally 25/AP, but i'd get a couple just to be sure.

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    It depends on the AP, wireless cards in the laptops and size of profiles.

    25/AP is pushing the best kit to its limit. The ruckus kit seems to be the best for this at the moment if you compare costs with the high end kit available.

    You may get away with using more than one AP in a room, but you would need to manage your channels very carefully if you put APs in nearby rooms above, below or either side.

    If you just want to use it in one room for 25 laptops then I'd go for 3 APs, as 8 per AP is the recognised recommendation by most manufacturers.
    Last edited by alan-d; 16th January 2009 at 02:10 PM.

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    Griffo (16th January 2009)

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    We use HP AP's here. We have a laptop trolley with 12 laptops but when all 12 are on we have problems/connection issues. (We use a profile 15-20 meg). Imho i would like a max of 10 laptops per ap and also get the students to log on in stages (2/3 at a time). If you are concidering them for the LRC then hopefully you will not get multiple logins at a time like you would when a class starts but i would definatly state that the connection would not be as reliable as a standard wired one.

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    Griffo (16th January 2009)

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    If you are going down the 'non managed' wireless route - ie. off the shelf AP's, then you'll get 8 to a AP with ok performance.

    Anything more and you're asking for trouble.

    Managed systems depend on the make and how the system is used and set up.

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    Griffo (16th January 2009)

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    Just divide the AP bandwith i.e. 54Mbps which will really about 22Mbps real term by approx 3Mbps for each laptop this will give a rough idea as to the ratio for non managed kit.

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    Griffo (16th January 2009)

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    Thanks all

    We do currently have 2 Linksys APs (one on the first floor and one on the ground floor) and 15 laptops in our science dept, which works out at about 7/8 per AP and the speed is not bad, Slow at logon and logoff but otherwise ok.

    I have been asked to research into about 30 PC/Laptops so im Looking at 3/4 APs if we go down the wireless route.

    The other thing is the 2 APs in science are setup exactly the same as each other, same chanels settings etc and are set to work with each other to provide a "roaming" connection, the signals do overlap but we dont have any problems. I have heard about spacing the chanels but we dont seem to have a problem. When the signal from one becomes too week it just switches to the other.

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    I've had 40 laptops on 1 AP, cant remember make and model though sorry

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    I take it you cant fit 30 new desktops into the library then? And you haven't got the infrastructure to setup an IT suite in the library? I just dont like laptops in schools, everyone wants to use one as its "cool" but they always end up broke

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    Quote Originally Posted by penfold View Post
    I take it you cant fit 30 new desktops into the library then? And you haven't got the infrastructure to setup an IT suite in the library? I just dont like laptops in schools, everyone wants to use one as its "cool" but they always end up broke
    We can, we are just looking at all the possibilities.

    Personally I would prefer desktops and will strongly suggest them, its just that new network cabling and sockets will need installing which will cost a bit and a new switch, whereas a few APs will fit in the 6 ports left on the switch.

    The other thing with laptops is who will look after them. The librarian is not in all day and I know for a fact she would lock them away when she is not here, but of course there are then 30 laptops that wont get used

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    Quote Originally Posted by Griffo View Post
    We can, we are just looking at all the possibilities.

    Personally I would prefer desktops and will strongly suggest them, its just that new network cabling and sockets will need installing which will cost a bit and a new switch, whereas a few APs will fit in the 6 ports left on the switch.

    The other thing with laptops is who will look after them. The librarian is not in all day and I know for a fact she would lock them away when she is not here, but of course there are then 30 laptops that wont get used
    It may be worth weighing the cost of laptops over a 5 year period against the cost of running an IT Suite. eg; a replacement laptop keyboard would cot you in the region of £40 each. Batteries will last approximately 2 or 3 years at a cost of arount £40 each plus the cost of disposing of the old ones. Labour costs compared to PCs are higher as installs even remote installs are time consuming.

    I know 440 laptops here and still climbing

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    I can't be too helpful on this unfortunately however from the little experience I've had so far, I'd suggest staying clear of 3com managed wireless solutions. Oddly enough the ones I've seen that appear to work the best were off the shelf D-Link units (not relating to the forum sponsor), surprising as I'm not a particular fan.

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    PEO
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    10 laptops per AP. I wouldn't add any more. I have 3 AP in each wireless hotspots around the school to support our mobile class room of 30 laptops.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Griffo View Post
    We are looking at the best way of adding more PCs to the school library.

    One possibility is wireless laptops, so does anyone know what the suggested or average/maximum number of wireless laptops there should be per Wireless AP?
    I can recomend Ruckus Wireless for this as mentioned previously in this thread.

    Yes we sell it and yes we are bound to say that but just check some of the threads about Ruckus and what it can do, these are Edugeek users and they have purchased and experienced it.

    We have experienced people running 25 - 51 on b/g and up to 60 users on n.

    The maximum number per access point for Ruckus is 100 users per a/p but this is always going to be a tall order dependant on what you do, we say 50 is the best number to work with and over two classrooms of laptops this will work no problem.

    If you are seriouse about wireless and want to talk more give me a call or PM me and I will go through the solution. I will always lend you some kit FREE OF CHARGE if you want to see how well it works, that way you can make your own mind up.

    We have provided plenty of Edugeek users kit and they have purchased so please ask about see what they all say.

    Cheers

    Mark 01473 281211



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