When deploying a new wireless network, sometimes network administrators will run into situations when they don’t want to broadcast a certain SSID in specific areas of their campus. Or vice versa, sometimes it is desirable to only broadcast a particular SSID in a restricted area. A great example would be when they want to provide open, unrestricted guest access in a corporate lobby for visitors but they don’t want to broadcast this SSID in other areas because they don’t want to employees accessing social networking sites during business hours. Or perhaps an administrator doesn’t want to broadcast an SSID on the APs around the perimeter of a facility to provide geo-fencing.
We have now added an easy way to accomplish this through Dashboard using AP tags. AP tags are a way of grouping APs together by applying an identifying tag, such as “Building_4”, to create an easily-searchable group of all the APs located in a certain building. So how do you apply a tag to an AP? There are two simple ways, either for an individual AP or for a large group of APs. To just tag a single AP, go to the AP details page:
Go to the Edit Configuration link, and add Tag names, such as “Lobby”:
Then go to the SSID Availability page and select “This SSID is enabled on some APs…” from the AP selection control. Enter the name of the tag of the APs that you want to broadcast the SSID from, and you’re done! This specific SSID will only be broadcast from the APs belonging to this tagged group.
In some situations, there may be a large number of APs that you want to tag into a certain group, perhaps all the APs in a single building on a college campus. In this case, you can tag en masse from the Access Points page under the Monitor tab. Simply check the APs you want to tag, select “Add tags” from the Actions drop-down menu and enter the name of the tag to use:
AP grouping with tags gives you a simple way to segment SSID broadcasts within a single network by building, floor or room, providing you with a new level of control over your network. AP broadcast by tagging is available now for all Enterprise customers. Try it out and let us know what you think!