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Wireless Networks Thread, Wireless AP Recommendations in Technical; Hi all, the headmaster at the school went out and bought 20 laptops for the teachers at the school. Now ...
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    Wireless AP Recommendations

    Hi all, the headmaster at the school went out and bought 20 laptops for the teachers at the school. Now today he told me they arrived and I pointed out the lack of a wireless solution within the school. We have a few 54Gs around but they are sporadically placed and don't cover what we want to cover.

    I got the green light to buy some more APs and I was looking for recommendations. The wireless network is unmanaged (no domain) so they are all stand alone. A staff meeting will have 25 laptops so it would need to handle that kind of volume. Can anyone recommend a brand to buy to cover the school?

    Jason

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    What budget are you looking at?

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    Lookin to keep it around $500-700 for 3 floors and a library. I already have 5 54g so it would be in addition to those.
    P

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    jamesfed's Avatar
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    I'd seriously consider a managed Wireless System for that kind of volume - expecily if Wi-Fi is going to start to become highly used in your school.
    Here we use the AeroHive system - just google them and their at the top.

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    Right, well that depends on the cost. I agree but I don't control the money flow so while I will push that I can't guarantee it. I looked up AeroHive and sent them an inquiry.

    In the meantime I guess what I am looking for are reliable routers that can handle 25 connections at one time. Any suggestions?

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    You don't need routers, just access points. I would recommend you look at Ruckus, Xirrus and Meru as well.For high capacity wireless, you should stop looking at the home networking providers right now. This includes Netgear, D-Link etc. Thier kit doesn't cut it.

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    OK sorry I wasn't sure of the major differences between the terms AP and router. I see what you mean now but since we have no AD/Samba going on I would like to have some level of control over certain rooms (like allowing student access at certain times of the day). I have explored Ruckus last year and almost got it but I will try again. How much as I looking at budget wise for a solution that can do what I want? If I was to buy an AP for a single room that can handle 25 people which physical AP do you recommend?

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    p858snake's Avatar
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    I believe the ruckless APs can run in "unmanaged" mode till you can afford the controller box/card, If that would make cheaper and more accessible to you (someone will need to confirm/deny this).

    I'm surprised to see that you aren't running your systems in a domain, Is there a reason for this?

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    We aren't on a domain because I don't have the expertise to set one up or the time to manage it. Plus our server is in Korean. So hopefully they will hire someone and we can get it done.

    I've emailed Ruckus and am waiting for a reply. There are no prices on their website so it's hard to know what I can get for the money I may get (now raised to $1000 give or take a few hundred).

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    While Ruckus makes an awesome product. A budget of $1000 will only get you 1 or 2 ruckus APs.
    Are you looking for simply wireless internet access or internal network access as well?

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    Interesting as I just contacted Aerohive and the local Korean partner put 10APs plus ethernet switches and a controller at more than $20,000. I know of Ruckus and can I just get 1 or 2 APs on their own? This is where I need to start before the school will throw down more cash.

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    Have a look at Aruba, we current have this product and is at around 40 or 50 of our sites. Microsoft apparently recommend it, I know it wasn't cheap but is good, we have had some issues with config but that was due to the way it was setup and how our network was setup as well but after a visit from a technician from France we seem to have solved it now. I haven't been directly involved but what I have seen it seems to be very good but cannot compare it against the Ruckus stuff which is very popular on here.

    You need to be prepared to spend money to get something that will work properly and I appreciate funds may be tight but you need to weigh it up against time spent fixing a cheaper one which will not be as reliable.

    In the long run you will appreciate a fully managed wireless solution, we do at work now after trying to do it cheap before.

    If your going to do it right do it right the first time is what I work to.

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    Thanks for the recommendation. I know of Aruba and I wish I could convince those with the money to see it your way (mine too!). Why do these companies never put prices of hardware on their websites (or am I just missing it)? Hard to make a choice when I need to email the companies every time to ask.

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    Being based in Korea why dont you look at a solution more homegrown!

    ZyXEL do a hybrid solution that works, it scales from a single AP and allows up to 26 units to work together as a managed solution.
    Ok its no Ruckus, Extricom or Meru but it's as cheap as noodles and so easy to deploy.

    I used 3 of them for the Korea v Ivory Coast match back in March when they announced they wanted Press WiFi in an area where there was no WiFi coverage at all.
    We had over 80 mad Korean Journos hitting it hard for 3 days and it coped admirably.

    Expensive managed controllers are all very well when you need to feed bandwidth hungry fat clients with managed profiles, Voip handsets and triple play services. If all you want is simple and easy to setup and manage look at the Zyxel Hybrids.

  15. Thanks to m25man from:

    jcrewe (19th September 2010)

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    Thanks m25man I will definitely look into them. I had no idea that they existed and this may be the perfect solution for us!

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