Max number of wireless clients



  • I have been messing with pfSense wireless pretty obsessively for the last half year but continue to learn new uses. I saw a post asking for Wireless ISP stuff in upcoming pfsense releases. I never knew this user base existed. Are they using internal radios?

    To my question for Anyone using an internal atheros device

    What is the max clients your wireless network has hosted?

    Where does it degrade?

    Does bandwith available divide evenly among users.
    ie… if 6megabytes/sec is max single client can achieve does it divide by each user?
    ie... 2 users=3mb/s????6 users=1mb/s and so on..

    Any -number of radios- to users rule of thumb?
    Thanks Frank



  • While I'm sure that user base exist, most people are just using external access points. Better range, configuration options, location, management, wireless technology support. My answer is based in pure speculation as I have not done a formal survey but an external access point just seems so much better. However I could be wrong that does happen from time to time.  8)



  • Yes i was just dreaming there was some internal device i was overlooking.

    I am trying to build a wireless test bench with 5-6 clients and wanted to hear others real world numbers. I bought a bunch of broke laptops for cheap and been rehabbing them for testing. Need to do a bunch of Antenna upgrades to them before attempting to benchmark them. I am trying to see how it scales up.

    Anybody running wifi honeypot??


  • LAYER 8 Netgate

    Routinely have 150+ on a Ruckus 7372. WPA2.



  • Thanks Mr.D

    I see the Ruckus on fleabay @$350-400. Is there any additional fees/subscription required?

    Do you know what the POE voltage and wattage required is for the POE input?

    Why a gig-E port and 10/100 port. Is the slower just for admin features or both do uplink?

    RP-TNC for antennas?


  • LAYER 8 Netgate

    No.  The AP will run in standalone without any additional costs.  Though you lose the benefit of the controller.  (My example is representative of a single, controller-based AP so the controller benefit is minimal)

    Not sure why they chose 10/100 for the second port.  It's typically used to provide wired access where an AP is.  Not for management/uplink.

    I don't believe the APs require PoE+.  www.ruckuswireless.com will know for sure.

    All internal antennas.  Just run with it.  BeamFlex is pretty sweet.  The main concern is usually keeping co-channel signal from other APs, not propagating further.



  • @Phishfry:

    Do you know what the POE voltage and wattage required is for the POE input?

    It's all in the specs for everyone to read: http://www.ruckuswireless.com/products/zoneflex-indoor/zoneflex-7372-7352#specs

    • DC Input: 12 VDC 1.0A

    • Power over Ethernet 802.3 af

    Have a look at their R500 AP which does AC for the same money. Both are two-stream MIMO 2x2:2 devices

    Make sure to read Ruckus' TechTalk section to understand what they are doing and why (pretty interesting!):
    http://www.ruckuswireless.com/technology/beamflex
    http://www.ruckuswireless.com/whitepapers



  • Kind of blown away with serving 150 connections with an internal antenna. Then only 7.5 watts@48V as well. Very impressive. So Cisco merkaki is a direct competitor?




  • LAYER 8 Netgate

    @Phishfry:

    Kind of blown away with serving 150 connections with an internal antenna. Then only 7.5 watts@48V as well. Very impressive. So Cisco merkaki is a direct competitor?

    Not really.  ;)

    Aruba maybe.



  • Aruba was just bought by HP. Down they go…

    Current ranking  (at least within the US and as far as I heard) currently is
    #1 Aruba
    #2 Cisco
    #3 Ruckus

    FWIW



  • Back to the topic. I have been researching this max internal Atheros radio users issue and can't find anything solid. One of the Atheros modules i recommend is an Apple Airport Extreme AR5BXB112 radio. When i look at Apples AP numbers they say 100 users. Do you think pfSense would work with that large a number as an access point? No conjecture please.

    How could i test without 100 friends with laptops?

    Maybe do a large gathering and setup a hotspot? Serving bandwidth would be cellular and not ideal with this method…


  • LAYER 8 Netgate

    pfSense DOES NOT CARE how many users are on an AP.  It's all layer 2.

    You are simply crazy if you want to use wireless adapters in pfSense for all but the most pedestrian of Wi-Fi access.  Get an AP.

    Regarding testing, you're getting to the numbers where if people expect it to work, and it doesn't, you look like an ass.

    Your best bet would be to find a place where wi-fi isn't expected, advertise its availability, and give them something for their feedback.  Depends on how badly you really want to know how well it works.

    I, personally, cannot see hanging a pfSense from the ceiling where a high-density AP belongs in all but the highest-density, open space scenarios.


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