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RichardBennett 12/5/2012 | 3:13:26 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back It isn't every day I get to see Aruba's internal correspondence, so when I got this one it was too juicy not to share. I really hope Aruba's people believe the picture they tried to paint of Trapeze is accurate, it makes our job so much easier when they're boxing with shadows.
meshsecurity 12/5/2012 | 3:13:26 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Back...snoozer. Would hate to be associated with any wireless controller outfit today on the marketing end. Old stuff, nothing interesting. Let's look at new arguments and stuff that is going on under the radar.

This url will take you to a very interesting deployment. One that is a fundamental argument for the next wave of wireless deployments in the enterprise. Check it out...


The integration of WSN's into an existing enterprise wireless lan deployment represents an intersection of two to three main IT issues faced by enterprises today. What you have now is that Aruba and Cisco are two dominant technology leaders in the wireless enterprise space but must emulate(copy) innovations coming from next-gen. companies. Can you guys which next-gen company is the next innovator in the enterprise space?

The internet of things....


IPobserver 12/5/2012 | 3:13:25 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Richard,

Conceptually it makes sense to separate control and bearer planes GĒō this is happening right across the networking sector.

But for enterprise WLAN, what difference does it make in practical terms? Can you elaborate?

Some of your competitors say it's just a technical feature without much of an application.(near-term, at least).
peanutoat07 12/5/2012 | 3:13:22 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Howdy,

I just have to say that I don't see the value in all of this vender versus vender sniping. I think we can all see that the person at Aruba Networks who wrote the list of these counters got most of it wrong, in terms of the technology. But that's probably his job, to give his salesmen lists of negatives. I don't know who he is, but I suspect that this sort of thing goes on all of the time in every company, because I see it whenever we talk to vendors, when they attack each other. It seems so unprofessional to me, but that's how things work.

Trapeze didn't start this "smart whatnot" campaign because they couldn't make money on their original gear. I would suspect they did it because they did the math and figured out that having a centralized tunnel endpoint for 802.11n bandwidth would be too expensive for their sorts of customers. Makes sense.

But, I can see how Aruba has to counter, since they *have* to tunnel all of their traffic back because they made their name with centralized encryption. But, it's not impossible for them to make the centrallized architecture work. You just need bigger iron, and they can make that easily, from what I've seen.

And, I'm sure Trapeze could do it to. They just chose their own marketing campaign. Let's not fool ourselves that either approach--centralized traffic (encryption or not), or off-loaded traffic is unique, or new, or anything to smile about. Different customers have different needs, and some make more sense centrally and others not. I've seen each vendor in this space pitch that their APs can offload data centrally or at the AP itself. It can be done with Cisco, Trapeze, Meru, and I think even Aruba mentioned they have something that can do it, though they don't like to talk about it much because they can't do centralized decryption that way.

Sorry, folks, but I think this whole distinction between fat and thin APs is hogwash.
lrmobile_strungup 12/5/2012 | 3:13:22 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Peanut has some good points, but Gabriel's got a great question. Just how applicable is Trapeze's new architecture in the enterprise/edu? The setup seems useful only for talking to other clients connected to the same AP, which is rare and far in between.

90% of the time clients are going out to the internet or talking to intranet servers, which all logically sit behind the controller. Aside from voice, this seems like a lot of work to relieve a non-critical issue. What are we missing here?

wirelessfreak 12/5/2012 | 3:13:21 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back I'm not even convinced it applies much to voice. How many calls are made to people on the same AP or even on the same floor of a building? Sure there are some but then again they aren't "critical" calls - more "hey, the meeting is starting."

Reading the response from Trapeze on Mr. Bennett's blog site it seems that Trapeze claims to centralize some traffic and not others. Does that mean the AP is doing stateful packet inspection or does it mean that certain clients are tunnelled (or not) or just simple ACLs on the APs that forward sets of ports into the tunnel?

Hard to tell the marketing from the engineering.
wavefront 12/5/2012 | 3:13:20 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Mid- to large-size enterprises that have branch offices would typically access the PSTN locally at the branch to avoid long-distance calling from a remote gateway. Bridging voice payload locally in this case makes sense.

The guest network in the same branch office should be tunneled back to the data center for access the service provider.

Would be nice to use the same APs to provide both services (VoIP, guest access).
wirelessfreak 12/5/2012 | 3:13:19 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back So this "feature" is for a remotely located AP at the end of WAN link and replaces the branch office WLAN switch? That doesn't seem to justify the marketing and FUD being thrown about over this "new" architecture.

Doesn't CAPWAP define all of these modes of operation - centralized, distributed, autonomous or something like that?

Seems that all the vendors are likely to support this but Trapeze is first to make noise about it.

No news here - time to move on.
RichardBennett 12/5/2012 | 3:13:19 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back One enterprise application that benefits immediately from local switching is Voice over WiFi (SIP + WMM). Local switching across APs takes two hops out of the path each voice packet takes, and the result is a reduction in latency and jitter.

Incidentally, there seems to be some confusion about how local is local, with some commentors assuming it's only within the same AP, but that's not really the case either. Local switching will send frames from STA-AP-AP-STA when the path is available, and also STA-AP-STA when that path is available.

Perhaps you guys should do a feature on Enterprise WLANs to help the public understand their options better?

Meanwhile, I've got code to write so additional questions can be answered by the able Trapeze marketing folk and from the Trapeze web site, http://www.trapezenetworks.com.... There's a nice white paper on Smart Mobile.

Ciao and namaskaar,

h8_wifi 12/5/2012 | 3:13:13 PM
re: Product Roundup: WiFi Strikes Back Aruba is not freaking out. Aruba has their eyes on Cisco and Cisco only, and Trapeze barely registers as a competitor most of the time. Emails like the one you saw are generated by their competitive marketing people to get sales people and VARs to stop asking the same questions over and over. A similar email goes out any time a competitor announces anything of substance.

By the way, this clever "Smart Mobile" thing you are so proud of - Aruba has had that as an option for oh.. two years now? They call it "Remote AP". It's designed for a remotely deployed AP and enables it to do local processing of traffic, but it works equally well in the campus network too. Read up on it. I think Chantry had a similar sort of thing once upon a time too - not sure what has become of them since the Siemens purchase. And even Cisco has HREAP.

Trapeze needs to sell themselves off to Nortel soon, as they are quickly becoming irrelevant. What does it tell you about a company when they name competitors directly in their product overview brochure, and give quotes to the press saying things like "We're the first vendor in our class to do x.. by the way Cisco isn't in our class" (last week.. some product announcement about a location appliance.) And finally, what does it tell you about a company when a thread like this starts on Unstrung?
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