Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Wireless Project Update

I have written before about our project to get the whole campus wireless coverage by September 2015. After many [many] months waiting for our Estates department to start moving, things are coming [too] thick and fast.

As well as another 36 buildings to survey and 47 currently being installed as part of the wireless project we have a small matter of three new buildings to kit out and bring on line for the start of term. This is in addition to all the fun the start of term usually brings, last minute department moves included.

Matters were not helped recently when Cisco shipped us a few hundred access points with a different LWAPP image version to the other 600 or so among the order. The configuration on these access points was different and it appears was missing the crucial "bridge-group 1 spanning-disabled" command. This caused our switch's BPDU guard to err-disable and shut down the port within around 30-60 seconds of boot up. What's worse is Cisco had no way of telling which image was on which access point. They were all mixed up among the order.

As a result we have had contractors fitting access points around campus and not knowing whether they are going to come up or not. If not, is it down to this LWAPP version or a VLAN, cabling, switching issue? Or just the contractors plugging the the ethernet cables into the console ports, or not al all?

This is just one of the many problems we have had in the last few weeks and months of the project. I'll try to update with a few more details, but on the bright side I finally managed to get a Surface Pro for wireless surveys and so far this has been excellent.

More about this and the project progression to follow.

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