We recently encountered an issue wherein a particular training building required network access. It was actually a shed used to teach carpentry and bricklaying etc.
As this building never had fiber optic or conduit connected to it, a cost effective solution was sought after.
I decided to use Ubiquiti Networks AirMAX Prism 2 product. I was able to create a “virtual wire” from the existing Cisco Catalyst based campus network to the shed using the AirMAX Prism 2 product.
The really cool thing about UBNT gear is that is supports enterprise standards and in this case that is dot1q trunking and layer 2 protocols like CDP. Our link is only around 25 meters in distance so speed was not really going to be a problem as the Prism 2 product is 802.11AC capable at 20/40/80 Mhz channel widths. I was more interested in stability of the link over speed. Granted we were able to achieve 300 mbit – which is a good result for the staff and students working in this area.
Lets break down the components I used:
2 x UBNT Airmax Prism 2 AC radios – both come with GPS for plotting distance. Note these come with POE injectors.
2 x Ubiquiti 5GHz AC RocketDish, 31dBi (compatible with Prism 2 radios).
1 x FS.com 8 port POE managed ethernet switch POE
1 x Cisco 3702i AC wireless AP.
As shed never had any data cabling we decided to install our enterprise Cisco AP to provide network access to the building. This is why I didn’t bother with a 48 port Catalyst switch – a cheap POE switch from FS.com will do the trick. The Prism AC configuration is AP for main and station for shed side – this allows pass through of VLAN tags for dot1q trunking. Cisco AP on far end needs a specific native VLAN as it is running in flexconnect mode. FS.com managed switch supports dot1q and powers Cisco APs out of the box with out injector, you can also tag your inband mgmt vlan for the switch managed IP address.
So for around sub 3k with cabling / mounting costs we were able to extend the network to this location. Below is the Catalyst commands that uplink to the Prism2 in AP mode:
description Link to Radio Bridge
switchport trunk allowed vlan 2,3,4,10,111
switchport trunk encapsulation dot1q
switchport trunk native vlan 111
switchport mode trunk
A cool feature on the AirMAX OS for Prism is the Google maps integration if you mount the included GPS antenna on each end of the link. Below is a screen shot of the web interface that shows this mode: