I am placing a formal request to Cisco and to the firmware development team to create a new-and-improved firmware release for the WET200 wireless Ethernet bridge, a product that is still being produced, shipped, and sold. I purchased the product about one-and-a-half years ago and have enjoyed its performance. There have been, however, some flaws with the device, namely the following:
- While configured to use WPA2-based security, DHCP-related traffic is not passed from a router/gateway's DHCP Server to connected devices on the WET200. Current firmware release notes indicate this was a known issue and was, supposedly, fixed; however, due to the level of problems customers are reporting, it appears this may have only been resolved, if at all, with security configurations of WPA, WEP, or OPEN. It has not been fixed for customers using WPA2-based security.
- When I originally purchased the WET200 and configured it to use WPA2-based security, while it, initially, did have a few problems connecting to my router/gateway, it, eventually, did connect and stayed connected for, approximately, one year. However, in September of 2009, it suddenly lost connectivity with my router/gateway and has not been able to establish a connection since, even after reinstalling the latest firmware revision and after several soft and hard resets of the device. I tested the WET200 with another router/gateway, only to experience the same issue. Other devices are connecting to my router/gateway, but, not the WET200.
- The last firmware update for the WET200 was dated back in July of 2008. Currently, it is January 2010 and since these issues have been known for quite some time, it is unacceptable that the firmware for this device has not been updated in such a long time, especially when there are known issues with the WET200's firmware. Such lack of support is forcing me and my clients to stop using these Cisco-based products and purchase competing hardware, something I would prefer not to do; however, without better support, I and my clients do not have a choice. Expecting me and my clients to use an inferior form of security on the WET200, such as WEP and/or WPA, until a firmware update is issued is unacceptable, especially when that update has not been released in over one-and-a-half years. Such lack of support is especially unforgettable when my clients and I are looking to purchase new networking equipment. In the past, I would not have hesitated to purchase a Cisco-based product; now, with this experience in mind, I am finding it very difficult to recommend to a client that he or she should invest their organization's finances into Cisco-branded equipment. Proper, professional, timely, support of your hardware is expected of your customers, especially if you wish them to remain loyal customers.
I have noticed that other similar devices, albeit, higher-end devices, have had their firmware updated, more recently, compared to the WET200. I assumed this meant that the firmware development team was updating all firmware on such devices. So far, I have been disappointed in the lack of firmware updates for the WET200. While I understand the possible desire to update the higher-end products, first, as a professional whose job is to research, recommend, purchase, install, configure, secure, and maintain both the enterprise-level and small business-level devices, I highly encourage Cisco not to overlook their small business products when the firmware development team is updating firmware for any Cisco products. Deficiency in the support of one strata of Cisco-based products is reflective upon the support of any Cisco-based product and is not easily forgiven by Cisco customers, such as myself, when new and additional hardware needs to be purchased.
I sincerely hope this posting will be met with the urgency and attention it is meant to initiate from Cisco, with the end result of producing a stable, effective, timely, and issue-resolving firmware release for the WET200. Your current customers desire such results and future customers will desire the same results, especially, if Cisco wishes to not only maintain their current customer base, but, more importantly, if the company wishes to grow their customer base. Thank you for your attention to this matter; I hope to see proper results, soon.