Hi everyone i have found your site after a bit of googling round for information on wireless vendors.
I have already read a number of topics, which were very useful :)
I am currently looking at replacing our Wireless Lan with another vendor and upgrading to N.
We have spoken to a few vendors and sales people but depending on who you speak to cost difference is immense and i think because we are in education they think we can afford anything.
I know this is really cheeky but could any of you guys let me know how much you paid for your wireless upgrade in the past year and what kit you had, as i think we are getting taken for a ride.
If you don't want to post on the thread thats fine but you are more than welcome to inbox me
Think our Meru was ~£50K for a large Modern build with ~60 AP's
Obviously it varies massively per school but it's worth looking at Meru and Netgear as well as he obvious Cisco. Netgear will be cheaper and it is still really good!
If you need any quotes, wireless surveys etc, feel free to get in touch
We are looking at about 75 to 90 AP's from
We have also been told around the 50K mark but i think this seems really expensive
Well with the Cisco & HP, don't forget you can "bid" them both and the price drops dramatically. Just make sure your reseller knows what they're doing and plays them off against each other
We had Cisco , was good but the 1131's did not support N..
A number of peeps have had success with the Ubiquiti Unifi. I have used Ubiquiti stuff elsewhere and it's reasonable kit.
Building design, and client numbers plays a big part in the solution.
Very true. It's worth getting someone to do a wireless survey first. Some vendors charge for the survey but I know Netgear offer a free one and then you can give their result to the rest. Not ideal, but it saves money
50k seems about right to be honest. Remember this is enterprise level kit your buying. If you were buying a load of Cisco 3750's, Juniper EX3200/4200 or HP 2910's you'd expect to be paying a fair whack - this really isn't that much different :)
Originally Posted by Mustang
I've been doing working with Meraki Recently and the cloud controller is very powerful and customizable - more powerful then a lot of other makes I've used like HP, Cisco and Aerohive.
Keep in mind with the enterprise kit, you're not just buying a bunch of access points - you're buying a bunch of intelligently managed access points, with a central controller to do the managing. This should greatly reduce APs interfering with each other, improve load balancing, handing of roaming clients from one AP to another, make it much easier to secure and manage your wireless infrastructure... all kinds of stuff.
This is what costs the money, and if you have the money and the requirement for this sort of managed environment then its money well spent.
I can't discuss what we paid for our Aruba deployment, but it was significant and it was money very well spent imho.
One thing to mention about the meraki kit - with it being a cloud controller it means you need to have certain ports allowed outbound. So if you are part of an RBC they may block these ports. (its so each AP can talk to the controller in the cloud).
Unifi - Just does what it says on the box.
I just covered our training facility with 9 APs + 1 external with a 120 deg sector to cover a sports field.
4 SSIDs on 4 VLans guest portal cost less than £1000
Unfortunately, to get the Ethernet connectivity to the previously uncabled areas needed a Fiber Run and 24 Ethernet drops which cost £4k
So the actual cost of your wireless deployment will depend on the state of the underlying infrastructure and it's ability to support it, so £50k could be quite cheap in some scenarios!
75 UAP-Pros as a comparison will cost around £13k plus what ever the installer wants to put them in if you can't do it yourself.
Most people choosing Unifi do so on cost and therefore self install to save money.
Other vendors leverage specific customisations of the 802.11 standards in order to make their products appear to have specialist features that we all "must have", most of which are probably not needed in the average school.
For those whose schools IT budget is not as large as RBS/NatWest (and look what that bought them) it has to be looked at, if you have specific requirements that need advanced feature sets such as single channel blankets, beam forming and band steering etc then any of the many vendors that feature here have a product that will do the job.
There is no one size fits all in the wireless world, although Cisco would probably argue that point...
RBS/Natwests issue will stem from the cost cutting that they've done recently. Pay peanuts get monkeys when it comes to mission critical systems.
The execption here appears to be Ubiquiti which must have cut some corners to hit that price point - but whether those are evident or even of concern would be for you to evaluate against the alternatives.
I note that every time a vendor/reseller cold calls me about a new wireless network as soon as I say 'Meru' they back off and the conversation is over. Their reputation is fierce.
I'm literally gathering quotes today.
I'm really liking the Meraki kit so will probably go down that route (there are pros and cons to them all I guess). We are a fairly small school (200 students) and are only looking at about 20 AP's. However, this is all part of a bigger plan to arm all kids with an iPad. We need this project to be scalable and manageable. The Meraki kit seems to tick all the boxes so far - and is reasonably priced (in my mind anyway). So far, I have received quotes ranging from £12k to £15k. That is based on 20 AP's on a 3-year license agreement.
£50k sounds about right for 90 APs, plus controllers. You'll then need any cabling putting in to hang it all off.
Originally Posted by Mustang
Me? I'd be looking at Ruckus, Meraki and Aruba. Not had any experience of the rest - except hearing so nightmares about Extricom and Xirrus. We run Cisco here (inherited when I arrived), and it works but it is not the simplest system to manage.