Thin AP Crosses the WAN

By Eric Griffith

December 08, 2003

Airespace says its new remote edge access point is the first that can be setup by itself in a branch office to talk with the central network switch over a wide area network.

While it's not unusual for switches to control access points in branch offices, they usually do have some sort of direct connection.

Airespace of San Jose, Calif., hopes to cut the cord further with a product they say is the first to light-weight access point to work across a wide area network (WAN) link without having a secondary switch or appliance on the branch office premises.

The 1200r Remote Edge Access Point (REAP) is a light-weight or "thin" access point (AP) that conforms to the LWAPP specification still under consideration by the IETF. LWAPP was authored in part by Airespace, and is supported by other wireless switch vendors such as Legra.

"We've had quite a few customers say they buy into the whole central architecture, to push out things like Quality of Service and SSIDs," Jeff Aaron, senior manager of product marketing at Airspace. "But they ask, how do you do it to a remote site?"

The zero-configuration 1200r is meant to continue to function and provide network access locally to users even if the WAN link to the network operations center goes down.

The unit will work with the Airespace 4000 switch and the 4100 appliance.

Last week, Airespace announced plans to partner with location-based services company Ekahau, to build Ekahau Site Survey 2.0 into the Airespace Wireless Enterprise Platform as an option in their control system software. Security wise, Airespace is incorporating technology from Fortress Technologies, to do dynamic radio frequency adjustments. To provide these features, the company is upgrading its embedded software, AireOS, to version 2.0..

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