Number of AP1250 managed by WLCs

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Oct 28th, 2008
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I heard from a Cisco SE that WLCs could not manage the same number of APs if these are 802.11n APs (1250) or others.

For example: a WLC4404-50 will manage 50 802.11a/b/g APs but only about 33 802.11n APs (1250).

Is that true ? I really can't find anything about this on CCO.



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jeff.kish Tue, 10/28/2008 - 14:51
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Kind of yes, kind of no. A Wireless LAN Controller operates via licenses, so it can support X access points, regardless of their type. The thing to keep in mind is the bottleneck that's created by having traffic pass through the controller. 50 APs each passing 20Mbps max = 1Gbps, and a 50-AP WLC has 2Gbps in uplinks. 50 802.11n APs each passing 100+Mbps quickly clogs the pipes.

Keep in mind that 802.11n implementations rarely hit this high throughput. It's only when in pure 802.11n implementations (no 802.11a/b/g). In these cases, you should probably avoid fully loading controllers, and use WiSMs where possible.

dennischolmes Wed, 10/29/2008 - 07:32
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The odds of you hitting this throughput ceiling in the next 2-3 years is unlikely. Most devices today are still 802.11b/g. A new generation of controllers will be released in the next year or so to enhance throughput and resources such as processor and memory power.

grzegorz.ciolek Fri, 10/31/2008 - 04:20
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Wireless is access network. As much as I remember max oversubscribe rate for this type of network is 20:1. Max average throughput per one 1250 is around 250Mbs. So with WLC4404-50 You have 6.1:1. I think your IT manager would be delight :-).




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