Editor’s Note: This is the second of a four-part deep dive series into High Density Experience (HDX), Cisco’s latest solution suite designed for high density environments and next-generation wireless technologies. For more on Cisco HDX, visit www.cisco.com/go/80211ac. Read part 1 here.
With any new technology comes a new set of obstacles to overcome. 802.11ac is no exception. Last week we talked about CleanAir for 802.11ac and why spectrum intelligence still matters. Another challenge is scalability. In this post I will give you some details on new HDX feature, Turbo Performance, which allows the AP 3700 overcome common scaling issues to scale amazingly well.
What’s Different with 802.11ac?
802.11ac means higher data rates, which means more packets per second (PPS). There are three reasons for more PPS with 11ac: wider channels, increased modulation and increased aggregation. Channel width doubled to 80 MHz, modulation increased from 64 QAM to 256 QAM, and aggregation increased from 64k to 1MB!
With 802.11n, an AP might have had to push 30,000 1500 byte packets per second through the APs data plane. Today with 802.11ac that could now be 75,000+ PPS. More PPS means more load on the APs CPU, so to really keep up with the demands of 802.11ac, we needed to go back to the drawing board. Read More »
Tags: 802.11ac, access point, aggregation scheduler, antenna, AP, byte, Cisco, cpu, data plane, Enterprise, HD, HDX, high density, increased aggregation, modulation, multi-client, network, networking, packet scheduler, packets per second, performance, pps, qam, radio, scale, technology, wi-fi, wifi, wireless
Editor’s Note: This is the first of a four-part deep dive series into High Density Experience (HDX), Cisco’s latest solution suite designed for high density environments and next-generation wireless technologies. For more on Cisco HDX, visit www.cisco.com/go/80211ac.
CleanAir for 802.11ac: Why Spectrum Intelligence Still Matters
In wireless networking and communications, as with life, nothing good comes for free. It’s well known that the primary feature of the new IEEE 802.11ac amendment is support for an 80 MHz-wide channel. The benefit of an 80 MHz channel is the potential to double usable throughput in comparison to that of 802.11n using a 40 MHz wide channel.
However, what is less well known is that a wider RF channel is also more susceptible to interference. In other words, 802.11ac devices “hear more” than 802.11n devices, primarily due to the wider channel support. It should be noted that this is not a flaw in the 802.11ac amendment, it’s simply basic communications theory.
Nevertheless, there is far more to building an 802.11ac access point than simply meeting the standard. Not all 802.11ac access points perform equally without interference. But more importantly, not all 802.11ac access points perform well in the presence of interference.
Furthermore, there is far more to deploying High Density wireless LANs than only considering the performance of individual access points. Read More »
Tags: 11ac, 802.11ac, applications, apps, bandwidth, Cisco, cleanair, device, gigabit, HDX, high density, mobile, mobility, network, networking, spectrum intelligence, user experience, wi-fi, wifi, wireless
A new year means new users and new devices. More devices means more network crowding. Mobile users demand bandwidth and speed, while the network is increasingly overwhelmed by the sheer number of devices. The networks of today and tomorrow have to be ready for high client density environments.
That’s why we’ve developed the Cisco High Density Experience (HDX). I announced HDX in a blog last October with a high level look at Cisco’s answer to handling high client density environments. Each feature in the HDX solution was designed specifically to alleviate the introduction of more clients, more bandwidth hungry applications to provide an unparalleled user experience.
Starting tomorrow we’ll kick off an HDX blog series to dive deep into the four key features that come with HDX:
- January 8: CleanAir
- January 13: Turbo Performance
- January 27: ClientLink 3.0
- February 10: Optimized Roaming
For more on Cisco’s approach to 802.11ac, visit www.cisco.com/go/80211ac.
Tags: 11ac, 802.11ac, applications, apps, bandwidth, Cisco, device, gigabit, HDX, high density, mobile, mobility, network, networking, user experience, wi-fi, wifi, wireless
2013: A Year of Growth and Innovation for Cisco WLAN
As we approach the end of 2013, I feel it is important to reflect on what an important year it has been for Cisco in mobility. 2013 marked continued growth in the WLAN space overall. It’s exciting to to see the continued gain in market share. Innovation has been a key differentiation against our competitors, and we will continue to strive towards providing the best solutions for our customers’ current and future needs. I truly believe the preservation of our market growth is attributed to the cutting-edge solutions that only Cisco can offer to meet the increasingly complex challenges of mobility in the enterprise, BYOD and beyond.
Read More »
Tags: 802.11ac, Cisco, enterprise mobility, wifi
Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Joe Rogers, Associate Director of Network Engineering for the University of South Florida (USF). Hear Joe speak about his experiences with next-generation wireless in high density environments on next Tuesday’s webinar: “Migrating Enterprise Networks to 802.11ac” at 10am PST (Dec 17) (Register here)
Joe Rogers is the Associate Director of Network Engineering for the University of South Florida. He is a graduate of USF’s Computer Science and Engineering program and has worked as a network engineer at USF for the past 20 years. He is currently responsible for all aspects of USF’s network which provides connectivity to over 100k devices across three campuses. He’s held a CCIE routing and switching certification since 1999. When not working, he’s an avid mountain biker (if you can call it “mountain” biking when you live in Florida).
Universities face some of the most complex design challenges in wireless networking. Our user population is highly mobile, bandwidth-hungry, and often simultaneously using at least two wireless devices in rooms with hundreds of their classmates. The wireless network isn’t simply a convenience to them. It’s critical to their educational success as many of the students are taking tests or working on assignments across the network.
At the University of South Florida, we support over 20,000 concurrent wireless users on our network of over 4,000 access points. We have more than 90,000 unique devices registered this semester. Our biggest challenge is designing the wireless network for the device densities in our large classrooms and popular study areas. In these locations, we often have a thousand devices in a few hundred square feet of space.
We heavily rely on band select to place as many devices as possible on 5Ghz where more channels are available. Unfortunately many devices such as older tablets and smart phones simply don’t have an 802.11a/n radio. So we must carefully RF engineer the environment with smaller cells to provide the necessary coverage density. Read More »
Tags: 5Ghz, 802.11, 802.11ac, band select, bandwidth, Cisco, college, guest blog, high density, higher education, migrating, network, network engineer, next-generation wireless, rf, Smart phone, student, tablet, university, user population, webinar, wireless