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Wireless Networks Thread, WiFi Pricing - just curious on similar ones in Technical; Good morning Edugeekers and happy Friday! I'm just investigating a proper Wireless solution for my school as currently we have ...
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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    WiFi Pricing - just curious on similar ones

    Good morning Edugeekers and happy Friday!

    I'm just investigating a proper Wireless solution for my school as currently we have 6 home routers dotted around school (legacy kit from before my time) that served the odd Wireless staff laptop, however, I have since upgraded pretty much all of the staff laptops (well, all have wireless now) plus we also have 2 x sets of 10 laptops in trollies which are getting used more and more as mobile ICT Suites for careers, science, music, art, etc.

    Anywho, just had a quote back in from my preferred supplier, but just wondering what kind of cost kit normally costs as before now I've looked after large organisations made up of small offices dotted around the country, so not really needed a managed solution, more of a ProSafe or equiv WAP putting in situ and letting it do it's job.

    Anyway, a survey from plan reckons on 14 AP's + 1 Control Module. AP's are roughly 780 each, control module is 900. It's Motorolla kit and meant to be very good (I trust these guys as they have been very supportive and provided the spot-on kit I've needed time and time again).

    Anyway, just wondering what other options there might be, is that a sensible cost? If any Supporters out there want to PM me for more details to give a cost then I can buzz school plans over as I need to get a few quotes anyway, especially when I'm looking at spending this kind of money!

    Thanks all
    Andy

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    I'd say speak to Net-Ctrl (User Aggy on here), and look at Ruckus kit. We have a Ruckus solution here, 1 controller, 13 AP's so far covering roughly 40 rooms. We've had 30 devices connect in a small area and no one had any speed issues at all.

    Ruckus devices, if you go for the 7363 model, are about 420ish, and a 12 device controller is a couple of grand. However, you don't normally need as many AP's with a ruckus system as most other systems (eg. our site survey with an Aruba system specified 23 APs, 10 more than with Ruckus). Oh, and also factor in software update support - this is about 25 per AP per year for the model above, and about 150 for the controller.

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    Aggy (4th February 2011), soveryapt (4th February 2011)

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    SimpleSi's Avatar
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    how many classrooms/teaching areas have you got?

    Because if you've only got 2 trolleys, then then 1 AP/class is a very cost-effective alternative to your mega-bucks plan.

    Worth trying a few out first

    I use Buffalo ones
    regards
    Simon
    PS Just to be totally fair, I am having a bit of bother with my latest ones running dd-wrt (only 2 weeks ago so haven't had time yet to sort them out) but prior to this, the G54 series have been great.

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    soveryapt (4th February 2011)

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Those ap's seem very expensive, as has been suggested one option is ruckus another that you may consider is the unifi system from http://www.ubnt.com/

    Ben

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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    We need whole school coverage as we have the 2 trolleys but then around 30 staff laptops and a couple of machines that are one Wireless (including my own - fun!) that just keep dropping.

    There are a total of 20 rooms spread across the site that need access. The only reason I'm looking at the mega bucks solution is that the few APs dotted about thing doesn't seem to be working, now whether that's becasue you get a better AP provided with your home broadband to the ones that are installed here or not, I don't know.

    I'm willing to look at all solutions, but these laptops all need to be able to access at the same time ideally, and sometimes from the same place (so when we run training they might be used all at once).

    I'll cost it up though as a 'this is the bare minimum solution that we can put in place for the thing to work as you want it to' and work from that ..

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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    Those ap's seem very expensive, as has been suggested one option is ruckus another that you may consider is the unifi system from Ubiquiti Networks, Inc.

    Ben
    Should explain, their wireless WAP (we have known asbestos through the school, so wired solutions aren't ideal (hence some of my machines being on Wireless too). To they use the N range to transfer info between them and provide access on the b/g.

    So, sadly, they are expensive ..

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    We looked at Motorola. They are really 'Symbol' which Motorola bought out, and that solution is used heavily in warehousing facilities, supermarkets and other such places. They only really started pushing into education and other markets a couple of years ago. Their kit does look very nice too, especially with their Wifi+Portable Radio integration stuff. But it is quite expensive.

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    soveryapt (4th February 2011)

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Their kit does look very nice too, especially with their Wifi+Portable Radio integration stuff. But it is quite expensive.
    I know .. just noticed their "school bus" case study for the secure tunnelling, might be something to buy into the next set of laptops, as 3G controller so staff have access wherever they are .. but yeah .. KERCHING .. I do realise that element too .. lol ..

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    X-13's Avatar
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    +1 for Ruckus.

    We're getting out network redone soon [hopefully]. All new switches, possibly new cabling, WiFi access points... So glad I'm not the one who has to do it.

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    soveryapt (4th February 2011)

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    plexer's Avatar
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    So you don't have network points in the places you are going to be running them but you do have power?

    So you need a meshing solution which I believe ruckus will do.

    Ben

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    soveryapt (4th February 2011)

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    It will indeed Ben, one of the nice things about the system is that with the dual band AP's (7363 and 7962) the 5GHz Radio is used for the mesh uplink with clients associated to the 2.4GHz radio meaning that throughput is maintained at a respectable level. As you would expect when you get over 4 or 5 hops between meshed AP's throughput does diminish not insignificantly (going from a starting throughput of 300 on N then after 3 hops throughput would be 100 and after 6 hops down to 60). Key thing is therefore to design the system so that root (Wired) AP's are located in areas to minimise hop numbers.

    Mark

    WiSE Guy

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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    So you don't have network points in the places you are going to be running them but you do have power?

    So you need a meshing solution which I believe ruckus will do.

    Ben
    Yeah, basically. There are the odd free points through the school, but to be honest, when they had it wired (probably something else that needs redoing too really) they only had very minimal computers, but when they took the leap (again just before my time) to put in IWB and machines per room, they didn't upgrade these points, so they're a bit higgledy piggledy ..

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