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Community Member

How many clients per AP?


I'm looking for documentation that states what the practical limit is for the number of clients per AP.

The only thing that I have found is on the FAQ that states, generally, that the AP is capable of 2048 MAC addresses and performance decrease as more clients attach.

I'm looking for a hard number (i.e. 20-26 client...)



Community Member

Re: How many clients per AP?

the maximun number of devices that you should assocaite as recommended is 15 - 25 , this is also applicable when you are using the LEAP authentication.

Hence the optimum number.

Community Member

Re: How many clients per AP?

Do you happen to have a link to this info?



Cisco Employee

Re: How many clients per AP?

Hi Robert,

There is not a hard and fast rule for this.

You have correctly stated that the theoritical maximum is 2048 and as per the previous post is is also correct that the 'rule of thumb' is between 15 and 25 clients, but this is based on typical traffic patterns.

If you have a traffic pattern that is large size packets and low number of packets then you can have more clients but if you have a large number of small packets even though the through put is the same as the above example you will need less clients per AP Interference will also reduce your throughput and as such the number of clients per AP

I hope from this you can see why there is no exact figure as there is a number of varriables that will be different in each network

For scalabilty the best way to think of an AP is as a layer 2 ethernet bridge, as this is functionaly what it is

The rule of thumb that I use is not so much 15-25 clients but rather ask the question "would I design this same network with only 10baseT hubs ( not switches) ?" The outcome is the same but also takes into account the rest of the network in terms of broadcast domains etc

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