Cisco 521 Roaming?

Unanswered Question
May 7th, 2008

Does this Access Point support roaming?

We want to buy 3 of theses in standalone mode and are wondering if a user moves throughout an area, if they will roam seamlessly from one AP to the other. I did not see any documentation on it so just curious.

Also, is the Cisco Configuration Assistant easy to use? Does anyone have a demo or know where I could download it now to see how it works?


I have this problem too.
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dennischolmes Thu, 05/08/2008 - 04:45

I do believe that they would roam just like and other autonomous 1131 or 521.

rob.huffman Thu, 05/08/2008 - 15:47

Hi Josh,

I don't think roaming is supported on the "standalone" type deployment :( In traditional Autonomous deployments you required the use of the WDS to provide roaming which this will not have.

There is no roaming support between the AP521G access points or between the AP521G and the UC520-integrated access point.

The ultimate wireless and mobility solution for the SBCS environment is the Cisco AP521G controller mode access points deployed in conjunction with WLC526 wireless LAN controller. In this deployment a client can seamlessly roam between the controller mode access points. A maximum of six controller mode access points per WLC526 controller are supported by CCA.

From this excellent doc;

Hope this helps!


mrdrummer18 Thu, 05/08/2008 - 16:56

Hi Rob,

Thanks for the info. Through my account rep at CDW, she informed me that Cisco said that autonomous deployments of the 521 do support roaming. I assume that means yes?

dennischolmes Fri, 05/09/2008 - 03:27

I think this depends on the definition of the word "roaming" as Bill Clinton would say. Since the 521 does not support WDS, you will roam, but not very quickly. Roaming is actually a function of the client and if the autonomous APs are configured the same then when you meet the client devices' roaming threshold you will move to the next AP with the same SSID. Does this mean you wouldn't have to reassociate and reauthenticate? NO. You WILL have to do both of those and it won't be fast. So, if you're deploying a latency based application like voice or video then you will have slow roams and jitter or dropped calls and video streams. WDS was created to compete with Airespace and like minded companies that used PKC or credentials caching to speed roam times up to less than 10 milliseconds(same subnet, same controller). One of the main reasons that Cisco acquired Airespace was this ability to run latency based applications much better than their existing autonomous solution. SO, as Bill Clinton said, "I can not roam with that AP, the 521!" when in essence, he just did!But, oh so slowly.

rob.huffman Fri, 05/09/2008 - 05:34

Hey Dennis,

Great! Great! Great! 5 points from Calgary for sure ;-)



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