Aerohive – The future proof Wifi solution

Moving from fixed devices to mobile devices has triggered a massive increase in the demand for wireless internet – Wifi. This revolution continues apace, that is clearly visible. At the end of 2014 there were, for the first time in human history, more mobile devices than people on earth. There is no sign that the uptake of mobile internet connected devices will slow down anytime soon.

Wifi solutions are increasing in complexity, performance and security, while at the same time getting very affordable. One of the newer and more innovative players is Aerohive, a Californian company. On April 27 2015, Aerohive Networks announced a partnership with Dell; Dell now offers their customers an Aerohive cloud-based solution.

Now let us take a look…

What is Aerohive?

As you may know the offices of the year 1950 are not quite the same anymore as the offices we have today. Let’s clarify this with a picture…

In today’s world, we have more and more connected devices, with interconnected applications, different locations, etc. All those devices take a lot of throughput. And what the customer wants is reliability, ease of use, low prices, and speed, speed… and again, speed.

Well, Aerohive is a cloud based solution that can provide all of this.

How? I hear you say… Well, let’s take a look!

How Aerohive brings the Wifi network to the next level

Aerohive has a high throughput, it has high reliability, great manageability, and it is easily scalable to ensure high signal strength in the entirety of your building, all at a competitive price.

Aerohive devices use the wireless network protocol 802.11ac. I wont elaborate any further on this protocol here, but if you are interested in the technical explanation of the protocol you can find a lot of useful information about the protocol on the worldwide web.

One of the unique functions of Aerohive devices is the management console which gives you an overview of zones where the signal strength is strong or weak, for example. This will allow you to tailor the number and positions of your access points (AP) to maximise the WiFi signal in your environment.

You can even upload a ground plan of your office and indicate the APs on it. The device will calculate where the weak spots in your building are. All the information is stored in a cloud based environment.

We examined what Aerohive throughput is; we discussed the protocol and some other functions.

But now…

How does the Aerohive work?

You have 4 methods:

  • AP centralized on wireless Lan controller
  • AP with a mix of cloud and Wlan control functions
  • AP that uses an elected AP as a controller
  • AP with protocol-based Cooperative control

I will briefly cover two methods below.

Centralized Wlan Control with cloud controllers

The main disadvantage of this method is that when the connectivity of the Wlan has been lost, the functionality will also be lost.

There is a L2/L3 roaming with voice possible. L2 or L3 roaming refers to a user seamlessly hopping between access points in a network. Layer 3 roaing is more complex because the wireless client is moving from one VLAN/subnet to another. Aerohive allows roaming with voice in addition to data.

Cooperative control

The other three methods try to overcome the ‘connectivity problem’ of the first method.

The Cooperative control has an architecture that scales from one to tens of thousands of connected APs.

The advantages are:

  • 1) There is no single point of failure. Which means I can have AP failures without endangering the availability of my mobile/Wifi network.
  • 2) There is a distributed software update function.

Aerohive devices

Aerohive has a number of devices, all tailored to provide the right solution to the corresponding customer. Ranging from small retailers to large campus environments. Not sure which device fits your requirements? You can contact us to discuss a custom solution.

This brief introduction of what Aerohive is capable of delivering perhaps raised some interest… And many more possibilities and functions exist.


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