I’m working on deploying 96 wireless access points in our student dorm rooms. We originally started with an initial deployment of 40 wireless access points. We installed the original AP’s in the hallways, but had signal issues due to all the HVAC in the vertical walls. Hallway installation wasn’t the greatest idea to begin with, but at the time of the initial installation we had limited funding to run cables to every suite. In our new deployment, we required that contractors pull cables into certain suites. Each suite houses 4 rooms,so I decided to place an AP in every other room and staggered the AP’s from floor to floor. There wasn’t much HVAC or piping in the horizontal flooring above or below the rooms, so signal penetration worked significantly between the floors.
For those of you asking why Enterasys (now Extreme Networks), well we’re already an Enterasys shop and house 2 physical Extreme Networks 5210 wireless 10Gb controllers in our data center. Extreme Networks wireless also has a niche of being able to push L4/QOS policies down to wireless users as they do on the Extreme Networks wired gear. This makes redirecting blacklisted users through our NAC system a breeze.
I also decided to go with the
Enterasys Extreme Networks ap3705i, which is a 2×2 dual radio MIMO wireless access point versus the 3×3 model. We ended up being able to double our AP capacity because the 3×3 radio was almost double in cost. We typically see around 65% of 1×1 MIMO mobile devices, so higher AP density just ends up making more sense for us right now. You can also find some great notes on my issues with wireless channel planning here too.