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Deploying, Testing, and Tuning 802.11ac

By now you’ve probably heard quite a bit about the newest generation of Wi-Fi, 802.11ac.  I’ll save you the gory details, just know it’s about 3x faster than 802.11n and will help to improve the capacity of your network. Jameson Blandford and I were recently guests on the No Strings Attached Show podcast with Blake Krone and Samuel Clements (Click to listen to the podcast).

I wanted to follow up the podcast with a blog to go over considerations for deploying, testing, and tuning 802.11ac.

Considerations for deploying 802.11ac

Switching infrastructure

The first question you’ll want to ask yourself, is, if your switching infrastructure can handle 11ac?  The answer probably is, yes.  The things to consider are the port speed and power-over-Ethernet (PoE) capabilities.  You’ll want the access point to have a gigabit uplink to the switch.  Each 11ac access point could potentially dump several hundred megabits per second of traffic onto your wired network.  It’s also not a bad idea to have 10 Gig uplinks on your access switches to distribution or your core.  If you have even just a couple access points on a single access switch, you may quickly find yourself wishing you had 10 Gig uplinks.

Next you’ll need to consider how you will power the access points.  If you are like the majority of our customers, you will use PoE from your switches.  While 11ac access points require 802.3at (PoE+) for full functionality, the Aironet 3700 will run happily on standard 802.3af PoE.  In fact, it remains 3 spatial-streams on both radios, so performance does not suffer because you have a PoE infrastructure.

Will you deploy 80 MHz channels? Read More »

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Is the Future of Mobility a Disappearing Act?

October 2, 2013 at 2:39 pm PST

As a mobile expert and thought leader, I’m frequently asked about what the next big thing in mobility will be, and my answer often surprises inquirers – mobile’s future is a disappearing act.

When most people think about the future of mobility, they think of larger, possibly flexible mobile screens, thinner and lighter designs, and the incorporation of new, currently unavailable technologies, but the reality isn’t so black-and-white.

Mobile Device

In past posts, I’ve explained why mobile devices gained ubiquity – in sum, they’re submissive to us (they’re easy for us to handle and manipulate), and the future of mobility is no exception. Think about it – what could be easier to handle than nothing at all? In time, we’ll begin to see technologies that virtually disappear until we need them, at which point we’ll see them front-and-center, or discretely in our periphery, depending on the optimal viewing location and utility offered. In the interim, mobile devices (both their hardware and software) will hybridize in an effort to complete the transition to virtual disappearance. Read More »

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Crowdsourcing Fiber Networks: Community Validated Investment in Action

Howard Baldwin - PhotographBy Howard Baldwin, Contributing Columnist

Fact: laying fiber communications infrastructure is expensive. Fantasy: the ability to know ahead of time how many property owners in a given neighborhood would pay for a new fiber infrastructure by subscribing to services or even – and here’s a real fantasy – paying more to get the fiber laid initially.

Except it’s not a fantasy. If you’re a telecom carrier, a cable company, a municipality, even a group of community activists, Greg Richardson is here to offer a compelling approach to capital investment in new infrastructure. And he’s done it with an idea that’s almost embarrassingly simple.

Read More »

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Driving Success for Midsize Businesses with New Website

I’m happy to announce a new resource for companies with 100-1,000 employees:  the Cisco Midsize Business Solutions website. Built for midsize IT and business leaders, it discusses current market influences and top challenges with insights on how to address them. With solutions, case studies, videos, and tools, it provides these leaders with the information they need to grow their business.

One of the top focus areas on the website is the infrastructure. A strong IT infrastructure is important to the success of any business. The infrastructure is how we get the applications we need to do our jobs. It’s how we collaborate with our co-workers, partners, and customers. It’s how we access the data we need when and where we need it. When it comes to midsized businesses, it’s the key to growth.  Read More »

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Cisco Sizzle – Summary of May’s Hottest Stories

Welcome to the Cisco Sizzle! Each month, we’re rounding up the best of the best from across our social media channels for your reading pleasure. From the most read blog posts to the top engaging content on Facebook or LinkedIn, catch up on things you might have missed, or on the articles you just want to see again, all in one place.

Let’s take a look back at the top content from May…

Work-Life Balance … Or Work-Life Integration?
Achieving a work-life balance can be tough, but Cisco’s CTO Padmasree Warrior takes a different approach. Instead of trying to balance the demands of work and home separately, she embraces integration and combines the two together whenever she can.


IoE: Powering Supply Chain Management
Cisco is connecting the Internet of Everything to get supply chains perfectly linked. Watch this video to explore how IoE instigates meaningful actions to happen faster.

Cisco Ranks High With Young Professionals
Career Bliss recently compiled a list of the top 10 companies where young employees are happiest, based on more than 48,000 employee-generated reviews. It’s no surprise to us – Cisco was ranked as #5 overall! Many thanks to our employees for this honor – you make us happy, too!

How Organized is Your Cabling?
Any IT guru will agree: this is an amazing feat of organization. Extra credit to anyone who can keep cabling in line like this!

How IoE Will Bring Up to $14 Trillion of Value to the World
During the 2013 Cisco Editors Conference, Padmasree Warrior and Sean Curtis demonstrated how applications, cloud, data centers and intelligent networks come together to deliver new experience and opportunities. Watch to learn more:

Cisco and Wired: Re-Imagining Magazines As We Know Them
Cisco and Wired are joining forces to provide living examples of the Internet of Everything and its future possibilities. Explore this interactive magazine to see how IoE is changing every aspect of our lives.

What Keeps a CEO Up At Night?
In this latest installment of Leadership@Cisco, Cisco Chairman and CEO John Chambers talks about his love for adventure, the importance of family and the characteristics that make a good leader. Learn what he’s most passionate about, where he sees technology going in the future and what keeps him up at night in this video.

Cloud Curious?
Cloud computing is fundamentally changing the way businesses and people consume information. It is enabling IT as a service, evolving collaboration and changing content delivery. See for yourself how Cisco is helping service providers of all sizes navigate the world of many clouds:

Coordinated Attacks Against the U.S. Government and Banking Infrastructure
In this blog post, Mike Schiffman and other Cisco employees inform us of a round of planned cyber attacks that have been launched against the U.S. government and banking systems. They provide an overview of the situation along with resources and best practices to prevent and respond to the attacks. For more information on how to protect against these attacks, don’t miss this post:

Check out the Cisco Storify feed for even more great content!

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