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Get your Wi-Fi network ready for Windows 8

Microsoft will launch Windows 8 in late October. Along with a slew of other features, it will be among the first to support the 802.11w standard to protect Management Frames for client devices on Wi-Fi networks.

Customers running old Cisco unified releases (between 4.2 to 7.2) in local, Flex or mesh mode will run into an interoperability bug (CSCua29504, to be exact) that prevents 802.11w enabled clients from connecting to a Cisco WLAN with Management Frame Protection (MFP) enabled. This bug does not affect customers running autonomous access point deployments or customers running Cisco unified releases older than 4.2.

What are the possible solutions for you?

1. Please upgrade your production environment to one of the following releases, which will interoperate with Windows 8.

  • 7.3.101.0
  • 7.2.111.3
  • 7.0.235.3

2. Roll back to pre-windows 8 drivers as identified in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article.
3. Fall back to TKIP
4. Sign up for a beta release for Cisco’s upcoming feature release 7.4 (beta available now!) that supports the 802.11w feature in local mode.

What is 802.11w ?

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Public Sector BYOD Series: Streamline IT for a Mobile-Ready Work Strategy

For this week’s final Public Sector BYOD Thursday post, I wanted to discuss a survey  that illustrated what employees want and need when it comes to IT in the workplace:

  • Control over the work experience—the ability to use technology to personal preference, in ways that improve productivity and enhance job satisfaction.
  • Choice when it comes to devices and the ability to use preferred, personally owned devices to complete work-related tasks.
  • Flexibility to perform personal activities at work and work activities on personal time.
  • Mobility that enables anytime, anywhere connections to colleagues, customers and partners.

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Cisco ushers in the Next Generation in Enterprise Class Wi-Fi Connectivity

Last week at Interop New York, we unveiled theAironet Access Point 2600 and Aironet Access Point 1600. They join the Aironet Access Point 3600 (launched earlier this year) to make up Cisco’s second generation “G2” enterprise class 802.11n Cisco Aironet Access Points, a key component of Cisco’s Unified Access solution: one network.

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Application Visibility & Control: CleanAir at the Applications Level

The Problem:

There are many challenges IT managers face on a daily basis. As the proliferation of user devices and the growth in business, personal and collaborative applications continue to grow, almost exponentially, these challenges only make the job of an IT manager harder. For instance, imagine what goes through the mind of an IT administrator who is responsible for helping a hospital and medical school get a handle on device and application growth and usage:

  • Is a guest or patient downloading movies using Bit-Torrent –in other words, stealing valuable airtime away from my mission-critical applications?
  • My network supports a mixed use of guests, employees and vendors/doctors. Without prioritizing applications on the network, employees risk losing productivity and response time to patients, insurance providers, labs. Can I prioritize business-class applications such as Cisco Webex/Jabber and de-prioritize the applications such as Netflix?
  • Who are my top 10 users and the top 10 upstream and downstream applications? Can I save a detailed report of all application flows in my network for compliance purposes?
  • The number of devices, number of users is exploding, and use of video is growing 50% year over year. Should I add more access points in my auditorium or conference room areas? Or should I upgrade to 802.11ac for more capacity?

Enter Cisco Application Visibility Control(AVC) integrated into wireless infrastructure.

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My first iPhone!

Excitement, anticipation, and a bit of anxiety. 3-2-1-Submit:  it was done: I’d just ordered my first iPhone! I’m not your typical fangirl—I loved my trusty  Droid for 2 years, but couldn’t help wondering what the iPhone fuss is all about and had to test out the “Apple way” for myself.

It’s clear I’m not the only one jumping on the bandwagon. Within three days, the iPhone 5 sold over five million units! And that’s not all. Apple is estimated to have sold  over 12 million units by the end of the month! iPhone users aren’t the only ones exploding the market. Google reported that in September 2012, there were over 1.3 million Android activations every day.

We’ve been promised speed, high performance and simplicity. In my mind, I should automatically be able to use my new device to connect with family and friends. Equally as important to me is the ability to access my work email and calendar, painlessly jump on a webex conference call and access Cisco’s intranet for up to date company information.

Don’t you feel the same way about your network? You should be able to painlessly and seamlessly manage your security policy, network management, and network architecture without having to maintain statuses of multiple solutions. With enhanced Unified Access, now you can do just that. (Learn more in our upcoming webinar)

Unified Access combines One Policy, One Management and One Network to create one platform to show us what’s possible. It’s the best way to prepare an organization for the deluge of devices coming onto the network, but given the fact that most companies are currently utilizing multiple solutions to patch up their different networking problems, we know that it’s not necessarily simple to understand exactly what Unified Access is and how it makes the most sense for you.

That’s why Chris Spain, Cisco VP of Product Marketing, is hosting a webinar with  a featured analyst firm who will discuss market trends.  Chris will then take a deeper look into Unified Access and how this innovative IT platform can help enterprise IT managers.

  • How can you create the flexible architecture you need to combine the wired and wireless network?
  • How can Unified Access address difficulty with identity, security and management?

To answer these questions and more, be sure to join us for our live webcast and Q&A next week on Wednesday, October 10th.  Register Now!