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Beginner

5508 & 5520 Old vs. New Mobility and supported MC MA Roles

Hi,

I'm looking for some assistance as we start to add 5520's and 8.2 code to our 5508 environment running 8.0 code.  We have 3 campuses with 10 buildings and 8 5508's.  AP's have L2 access to controllers and we have a centralized anchored guest network.  We allow / want roaming on each campus.

In reading the 8.2 release notes it talks about new mobility.  The notes and/or TAC state that the 5508 will only support new mobility as an anchor and not a foreign controller.  They stated that the 5520 cannot act as a mobility controller in the new mobility mode and they also state the 5508 cannot function as a mobility controller.

FYI we have some Catalyst 3850's in our environment, but it's mostly 3750's.  We do not plan to use these for MC or MA functions at this time.

It's confusing as to what is possible and have yet to find documentation that explains this well enough to understand how to phase in 8.2 code and 5520's.  Does anyone have any experience with this and recommendations?

Also, aside from this - in a campus environment does it make sense to centralize controllers and move AP's from local mode to FlexConnect? This could be a whole other posting, but maybe it can be limited for now to whether or not it plays a part in how we configure mobility and upgrade our environment.

Thanks,

Jason

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VIP Mentor

It's confusing as to what is

It's confusing as to what is possible and have yet to find documentation that explains this well enough to understand how to phase in 8.2 code and 5520's.  Does anyone have any experience with this and recommendations?

If you are not intending to use 3850 as MA (converged access design), then you are ok. 5520/5508 cannot operate as MC for 3850/3650 MA. Still it can support new mobility.

If you enable "newmobility" between 5508 & 5520 it will change the mobility tunnel type from EoIP to CAPWAP, not other functional differences.This will enable the possibility of encrypted data traffic between controllers.

Also, aside from this - in a campus environment does it make sense to centralize controllers and move AP's from local mode to FlexConnect? This could be a whole other posting, but maybe it can be limited for now to whether or not it plays a part in how we configure mobility and upgrade our environment.

In campus environment Local mode is the best option unless you have low-speed links between buildings. FlexConnect helps, if you have multiple sites where you do not want to have WLC in each site or connections come via service provider WAN solution.

HTH

Rasika

*** Pls rate all useful responses ***

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Beginner

Thanks for the reply.

Thanks for the reply.

So if we have 5508's running 8.0, can they be upgraded to 8.2 without any mobility configuration changes?  If we replace any 5508's with 5520's do we need to use new mobility for all WLC's?

In regard to Flex Connect, it looks like the 2504 and 5508 are the only 2 post rack mountable stand alone WLC's going forward.  I like the idea of the 5520's smart licensing, I just wish there was a compatible WLC that was better suited for a wiring closet installation.

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VIP Mentor

So if we have 5508's running

So if we have 5508's running 8.0, can they be upgraded to 8.2 without any mobility configuration changes?

Yes

 If we replace any 5508's with 5520's do we need to use new mobility for all WLC's?

No, still you can use old mobility.

HTH

Rasika

*** Pls rate all useful responses ***

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Beginner

Good day guys, 

Good day guys, 

Was looking at your post and saw a really good discussion. 

I actually have a deployment to do for a customer that has ordered WLC 5520s and 3650 switches. 

They DO intend to use the 3650s as MAs. 

From documentation, i am seeing the following:

With Release 8.1 in a New Mobility environment, Cisco WLCs running Cisco Wireless software cannot function as mobility controllers (MC). However, the Cisco WLCs can function as guest anchors.

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/wireless/controller/7-5/configuration-guide/b_cg75/b_cg75_chapter_010010101.html 

Also,  what does supporting New Mobility—Mobility Controller mean? What functionality does it give me versus the New Mobility—Mobility Controller SPG

From the link below, it states that the 5520 controllers support New Mobility—Mobility Controller but doesn't support New Mobility—Mobility Controller SPG. I do understand what the SPGs do in terms of grouping the MAs to support quicker roaming and connecting the MAs back to a MC; which in this case would have been the 5520 (if it was supported).

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/wireless/compatibility/matrix/compatibility-matrix.html#pgfId-201465

So i suppose my overall question is what would be the best design based on the equipment. (Yes i know the design should have came first and then the BOM :))

Atm, i am seeing that we can use the 3650s as a MA and well the 5520 as a mobility anchor for guest access. 

But then what will be my MC? 

Can i use the 3650s as MC as well? its going to be around 300 APs so think it should have one separate. Or should there be some that act as both MC and MA.

Hope all that information isnt confusing. Ask any questions and i will clarify. 

Thanks 

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VIP Mentor

Converged Access (3850/3650

Converged Access (3850/3650 MA/MC) is no longer supported by Cisco. Last supported version is 16.3.x. Refer given release note

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/switches/lan/catalyst3850/software/release/16-5/release_notes/ol-16-5-3850.html#pgfId-1342650

  • Converged Access (CA) is not supported beyond Cisco IOS XE Denali 16.3.x.
    On the Cisco Catalyst 3850 Series Switches, CA is supported in the Cisco IOS XE Denali 16.3.x software release, which has extended support for 40 months

So I would not advice you to do the design based on that technology. Stick with AireOS (5520) and used 3650/3850 just as a switch without WLC functionality

HTH

Rasika

*** Pls rate all useful responses ***

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Beginner

Thanks for this very valuable

Thanks for this very valuable information. I would have most likely found this out during the project.

We are now confirming the best approach to use for the centralized model. 

It seems we may have an extra 5520. So the think is going to be that we use two WLC 5520s in HA SSO and use the 3rd one as a mobility anchor.

Thanks very much again

Highlighted
Beginner

Stay with the old mobility,

Stay with the old mobility, if you do not intend to integrate 3650/3850 with MA functionality.

If you have have neighboring APs on different controllers (but still in the same mobility group) and utilize Layer 3 roaming you will run into roaming issues. I speak from experience. We upgraded our 5508 WLCs to 8.2 and clients stopped working after the 3rd roam during a Layer 3 roam and were unable to connect until the user idle timeout kicked in. Reverting to old mobility helped.

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