Ruckus in one School - Meru in the other
We have a ruckus system supplied by @Net-Ctrl which works really well. Full site coverage, healthy throughput throughout. Our biggest issue is our rubbish LEA internet connection which is really throwing a spanner in the works of our BYOD plans.
Also looking at the Ubiquity UniFi AP Specs they are only 2.4Ghz, have just a 10/100 interface and use proprietary PoE, so no using your current PoE switches.
Last edited by SYSMAN_MK; 31st January 2012 at 04:27 PM.
@gshaw I think £54 a point (£74 with .af adaptor) 1 yrs warranty is a pretty fair.
I expect 3 yrs on £3k server but even then they want additional premiums for 4 hr on sites and stuff.
I have heard of an installer in the midlands charging £1700 pa for a maintenance contract on a 20 point installation.
(Wish I had thought of that).
@SYSMAN_MK whilst Unifi are only 2.4Ghz, Single Band, Single Radio - but then again so are more than 70% of the BYODs that pass through my system. On the Dual Band Ciscos and ZyXEL's we had previously we hardly ever saw a client associate with them at 5Ghz, the odd Mac and occasional iPad.
2x2 MIMo can deliver 300 Mbps (150 Mbps Full Duplex) wireless throughput, but that uses a 40Mhz channel slot which mashes the 1,6,11 cell planning so as most installations use a single 20 MHz channel this seldom yields more than 65Mbps using single slot N, so without Dual Band there is no requirement for Gigabit backhaul so why waste more money on providing it.
The PoE is passive 24v and standard throughout Ubiquiti stuff, why? Prior to Unifi they specialised in Point to Point which isn't reliant on 802.11af and a lot of it is run on batteries and Solar/wind power and lots of switch gear isn't a requirement.
Once again without having to change radio production too much costs are kept to a minimum.
Obviously high density deployments such as schools that already have 802.11af everywhere this can be a frustration but for an extra £20 a point can be solved easily.
As and when UBNT deliver Dual Band Dual Radio (and they will), with Gigabit and .af compliant PoE they will just plug in along side or replace the existing units.
Unfortunately I expect they will be three times the size and four times the price but even then will still be half the price of their competitors.
That's where single channel architecture has its benefits , and a network that supports 5Ghz as well as 2.4.2x2 MIMo can deliver 300 Mbps (150 Mbps Full Duplex) wireless throughput, but that uses a 40Mhz channel slot which mashes the 1,6,11 cell planning so as most installations use a single 20 MHz channel this seldom yields more than 65Mbps using single slot N, so without Dual Band there is no requirement for Gigabit backhaul so why waste more money on providing it.
Just out of interest, how many APs, institutional devices, BYOD devices do you currently see and what do you expect to see in a couple of years?
Absolutely agreed, but how many schools actually have a/b/g/n laptops?
How many are actually getting more than 65Mbps connection rates?
Making wireless clients try to do the same work as wired desktops has been a utopia that has consumed more of school budgets than I care to think of.
11ac may change this forever - in the future.
The private schools are clearly heading up the BYOD campaign and there is a definate increase in the use of RDP and VDI.
So if you deliver a usable wireless infrastructure they will definately come.
Just how many I have no idea but I'm certain that the way it's used is going to shift the traditional bottlenecks to different places.
Where we used to worry about how to get 20 laptops logged in over wifi it will be how do we throttle 200 BYODs through the web connection!
Almost every laptop I have every bought for a school has been a/b/g/(n) going back to when the rules on the 5ghz band was relaxed. I do wonder whether this is in part why my experiences have been so positive.
That said some early n kit was totally bobbins. So you will have to excuse me if I am skeptical that 11ac is going to obsolete my shiney 3x3:2 dual band 40Mhz Channel'ed n network any time soon. Maybe we'll be looking wistfully on in four or five years.
But as an interim, right now, depending on what you want it to do I must say that Ubiquity stuff looks interesting. But for many hundreds to thousands of devices I think Meru or Xirrus have the most promising technology.
You are right about the problem at the edge - caching and traffic shaping are going to become key technologies in a NM's arsenal.
With around 30 home matches a season it would take years to recoup the capital outlay which is why we keep it simple with 16 Unifi and 200 users DHCP lease time of 2 hours.
If we stay up next season I might splash out on the Sonicwall Web Accelerator Appliance
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