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Top issues to consider when implementing a wireless local area network (WLAN)

By Martine Velkeniers, Global Product Marketing, HP Networking

 

Martine VelkeniersWe’ve seen a lot of changes to the ways in which technology is used as mobile technology has taken off.  Today, mobile devices are simply everywhere. For the most part the transition to this new reality has felt seamless—you have a device and you’re just accustomed to being able to use it whenever and wherever you want to—at home or Wi-Fi hot spots. 

 

But as you’ve probably noticed, wireless access in private business settings can sometimes be challenging. Let’s be honest, if you’re in charge of your business’ IT department, you know that users demand pervasive wireless access everywhere in the building. Since this creates new challenges let’s focus on some of the things you’ll need to consider when implementing a wireless network and, in turn, we’ll see if we can make some of those challenges more manageable.

 

First let’s take a look at this video to understand some of the things you’ll need to consider.

 

 

Let’s now review some of the issues raised. The first thing you’ll probably need to contend with is your legacy wireless network. Simply put, if your organization has been around for a while, your network was probably not originally designed to meet the demands of the mobile world. Even if you’ve tried to keep pace with mobile demands, it can still be challenging.  In all likelihood you didn't build your WLAN network to handle today’s bandwidth intensive applications and the sheer number of devices currently in use.  Even with an accurate headcount, each of your mobile users brings in two or three mobile devices on your network and you will have a hard time keeping up with the demands placed on it. As they say, knowing is half the battle. Accurate insights into the limitations of your legacy network and your user expectations can help you make the necessary improvements.

 

Another point to consider—lower power devices such as tablets and smartphones need to be closer to the access points for adequate wireless connectivity. Gone are the days of limited numbers of access points in your network. With increasing density from these lower power devices, you’ll need more coverage to ensure that users are handed off seamlessly from one point to another.

 

Applications such as streaming video and other rich media communication tools, which are increasingly common, are bandwidth hogs. And you know from experience your users expect that application to work on whatever device they have at hand, with an experience that matches their existing wired experiences. Again, knowing how much media rich usage your network will be expected to carry is important to getting your wireless networking right for the future.

 

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Finally, with the ever-increasing proliferation of mobile devices come widely divergent security policies for these devices. This can significantly increase your network security risks and costs. So how do IT administrators cope?

 

Well, the first step is to centralize your internal decision-making. By doing this, you can eliminate fragmented approaches to mobility planning, security policies, and application design.

 

By centralizing decision making and properly planning and architecting your wireless network you can effectively support a mobile workforce while lowering costs and eliminating complexity.

 

For further information, download our best practices for creating a mobile-centric organization here.

 

For further information, 

>> For more information about the HP Wireless LAN solutions visit www.hp.com/networking/wlan

 

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<< Previous Blog: Why a “Unified Network” saves you time and money

Dragana Beara talks about deploying a unified network solution designed for unified access, BYOD, security, and unified management and how it reduce TCO by 47%.

>> Next Blog: Simplifying user access by unifying your network and access strategy

Gladys Alegre-Kimura talks about why not to segregate wireless networks, and how managing policies can deliver an optimal wireless experience; even to a guest user!

 

 

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