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Wireless Networks Thread, Some basic recommendation for wireless networking? in Technical; Hi there, We are planning to run 15 new laptops via an 802.11N wireless connection. So the layout is Server ...
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    Some basic recommendation for wireless networking?

    Hi there,

    We are planning to run 15 new laptops via an 802.11N wireless connection.

    So the layout is

    Server ---100Mbps---> "Middle School" --Access Point---> 15 laptops
    Room

    My questions are:
    1. Will we need to upgrade to a gigabit connection, or will the 802.11N access point just run at 100Mbps without complaining?
    2. Should we use two access points, in which case, can anyone recommend a way of having them talk t each other so that they can share the load sensibly?

    We're using Server 2003 R2 and the laptops will be dual core 3GB RAM running Windows 7. Should we use Home Premium, or a higher level of Windows 7?

    Thanks - Simon

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    Hi Simon

    Are the laptops being used in only one room or across the school? If only one room, consider whether it is likely to expand across the school and plan for that now, otherwise you will invest in kit that may be of no use to you in 12months time if you need to expand it to a managed system.
    You mention two AP's; so you have two options (IMO), 1) configure each AP with a different SSID and assign teh SSID to half the laptops, then the same with the other AP, 2) the AP's sort them selves, however you are describing a managed solution, rather than two unmanaged fat AP's.

    N can run up to 300Mbps, so you will definately want gigabit back to the switch otherwise the cabling will be the weak link.

    With regards to teh OS, I wouldn't imagine many would recommend using a home OS in a corporate/education network.

    HTH

    CraigP

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    Quote Originally Posted by inhousetech View Post
    Hi Simon
    N can run up to 300Mbps, so you will definately want gigabit back to the switch otherwise the cabling will be the weak link.

    Wireless N can only achieve speeds of 300Mbps by using channel bonding, and more often than not if you have two or more access points close together you wont be able to channel bond.

    You can expect a speed of about 120Mbps throughput so the cable won’t be much of a bottleneck (at this stage). However like CraigP says if you think you’ll start to provide wireless in other areas (and that does have a tendency to happen once its in one area) its probably worth looking at a managed solution early.

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    Ha ha, Kipling caught me out... Should have stipulate 5GHz I suppose

    I am used to deploying SCA wirelsss, thus completely forgot about the channel bonding and issues in 2.4GHz for cell based

    CraigP

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    a wireless 11n access point only needs a 100mb because the 300mb quoted speed is actually just marketing hype, with all quoted wireless speeds you should divide by 3

    300mb=100mb
    54mb=18mb

    with 11n speeds you only need one point for 15 laptops

    can you confirm wether your servers are connected to 1gb switch or 100mb, I have feeling that maybe this is the case as very few people would install a 100mb switch as a core.

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    I would disagree, as the one third ratio you are talking about is the speed between the wireless devices, not the wired side of the network. Also with g you should be getting 22-26Mb throughput. witha 300Mb N link you should be achieveing speeds of 120-150Mb wireless side. N AP's have gigabit connections on them as the data can be sent at gigabit speed on the wired network.

    The number of AP's needed will depend on the usage of the laptops as just because there is an N AP, the laptops maybe N as well, thus there usage may well increase.

    CraigP

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jose View Post
    a wireless 11n access point only needs a 100mb because the 300mb quoted speed is actually just marketing hype, with all quoted wireless speeds you should divide by 3

    300mb=100mb
    54mb=18mb

    with 11n speeds you only need one point for 15 laptops

    can you confirm wether your servers are connected to 1gb switch or 100mb, I have feeling that maybe this is the case as very few people would install a 100mb switch as a core.
    The number of laptops connecting to a single device is not set by the speed of the link as such. It is also down to things like the processing abilities of the access point, the antenna type, the way the system handles wireless connections (ie. how it reduces collisions).

    Also, the 1gbit connection would be quite important for the number of connections. Even if the clients are only getting 100mbit connections, it only takes 1 to then max out the wired speed - making it a bottleneck.

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    Just a thought I’ll throw in, I’m pretty sure you can use ruckus wireless points as stand alone APs – that is to say without using a zonedirector (I’m sure someone will confirm that).
    That way you could start with a couple of (self managed) very good access points and won’t have to abandon them later if your wireless coverage needs to spread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by inhousetech View Post
    I would disagree, as the one third ratio you are talking about is the speed between the wireless devices, not the wired side of the network. Also with g you should be getting 22-26Mb throughput. witha 300Mb N link you should be achieveing speeds of 120-150Mb wireless side. N AP's have gigabit connections on them as the data can be sent at gigabit speed on the wired network.

    The number of AP's needed will depend on the usage of the laptops as just because there is an N AP, the laptops maybe N as well, thus there usage may well increase.

    CraigP
    Theres a reason a lot of manufacturers sell N products with only 100mb ports and thats because they know it not a bottleneck, with most APs you will be lucky to get real world speeds of 80-90mb, I know it might say 150mb or 270mb but if you copy some large files across the network over the 11n wireless you will see.
    Also by changing my wnhde111 Aps to single 20mhz channel it made them give a stronger signal through walls.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    The number of laptops connecting to a single device is not set by the speed of the link as such. It is also down to things like the processing abilities of the access point, the antenna type, the way the system handles wireless connections (ie. how it reduces collisions).

    Also, the 1gbit connection would be quite important for the number of connections. Even if the clients are only getting 100mbit connections, it only takes 1 to then max out the wired speed - making it a bottleneck.
    I know this but its easier to just recommend some APs that will do the job.

    wnhde111, 5ghz wireless n - I've had 25 clients on one before, unmanaged
    ruckus 2942 - the dogs bollocks - get them from net-ctrl, can handle whatever you chuck at it even if its only 11g it would still give just over 1mb per client.

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    Every application/enviroment reacts differently with regards to networks, whether its wired or wireless, and as you say, larger files can take longer. Are the users tyical files going to be large or small, how frequent, etc. If you really wanted to design a network this should all be gathered and analysed first, however foer a couple of AP's it probably isnt needed. in regards to the 20Mhz going further, I agree, in the same way 5GHz doesnt propegate as far, but it has its uses with N equipment because its less congested/more channels.

    Again you are ferering 80-90Mb, isnt this the wireless speeds? Once overheads, security, etc have been added, I dont think any manufaturer would argue against achieving a mucher lower throughput. I personallay havent seen any enterprise N kit with only 100Mb ethernet. If they do then the kit must surely be badged wrong as gigabit switches dont have 100Mb uplinks! When putting traffic on to the wired network you should be aiming to improve performance, rather than maintain or even impacting performance?

    @ kipling, never used Ruckus, but seen the stuff and would agree with what you said.

    @Simon, check which spectrum (2.4 vs 5GHz) your laptops operate in before buying any AP's, so you can match them correctly.


    Just my opinion!

    CraigP

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    Quote Originally Posted by inhousetech View Post
    Again you are ferering 80-90Mb, isnt this the wireless speeds? Once overheads, security, etc have been added, I dont think any manufaturer would argue against achieving a mucher lower throughput. I personallay havent seen any enterprise N kit with only 100Mb ethernet. If they do then the kit must surely be badged wrong as gigabit switches dont have 100Mb uplinks! When putting traffic on to the wired network you should be aiming to improve performance, rather than maintain or even impacting performance?

    CraigP
    yes 80-90 is the wireless speed that the AP is capable off, if this AP has a 100mb port then the it will not have a bottleneck issue at the AP.
    example. 10 laptops connect to one AP each recieving aroung 8-9mb of bandwidth each, even if they were all copying large files to a server the 100mb port would still not be the bottleneck.
    Some enterprise N kit will have two radios in them such as ruckus 7942 so they need a 1gb port to handle around 200mb of real world data.

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    If all laptops in same room then 1 Buffalo AP will handle them no trouble - there are no real speed issues at all.

    If multiple classrooms then you generally need 1 AP per class unless walls are very thin.

    Buffalo APs are £55/each

    If you can envisage going to another 15 or so laptops to use in same room in near future (less <1yr) then buy a single ruckus AP (£250/each)

    regards

    Simon

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    One thing to note: If you're planning to join the laptops to your domain, Home Premium won't work. Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate are the versions for domain joining.

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