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Ask the Expert: Cisco Unified Wireless and Cisco Unified Access

Community Manager
Community Manager

With Richard Hamby, Patrick Croak and Nicholas Tate 


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Welcome to the Cisco Support Community Ask the Expert conversation. Learn from Cisco experts Richard Hamby, Patrick Croak, and Nicholas how to configurre, troubleshooot and design your network using Cisco Unified Wireless and Next Generation Unified Access Wireless. The Next Generation Unified Access Wireless includes the new IOS-based wireless features on the Cisco Catalyst Swtiches 3850 and 5760. You can ask questions about the Cisco Wireless portfolio of controllers, access points, and latest WLAN features. 


Richard Hamby is a technical support engineer in the Cisco Technical Assistance Center in Richardson, Texas. He is an expert in wireless products that include the Cisco Unified Wireless Network and the new Unified Access Wireless products. Prior to his current position, Hamby was a customer support engineer with the authentication-authorization-accounting team supporting Cisco identity management solutions..


Patrick Croak is a technical leader for the global wireless support team at the Cisco Technical Assistance Center, responsible for solving complex and challenging enterprise wireless issues. He also works closely with the Wireless Business Unit and Account teams for product development and innovation. He has more than seven years of experience working at Cisco. Croak holds CCIE certification (#34712)  in wireless and a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering from the University of Wisconsin. 


Nicholas Tate is a senior customer support engineer in the global technical assistance center supporting wireless technologies, where he works on complex wireless enterprise issues. He has published numerous wireless documents to and the Cisco Support Community. Tate has been with working at Cisco since 2011 and holds a degree in information computer technologies from East Carolina University. 


Remember to use the rating system to let Richard, Patrick, and Nicholas know if you have received an adequate response.


They might not be able to answer each question due to the volume expected during this event. Remember that you can continue the conversation on the Wireless sub-community, Getting Started with Wireless discussion forum shortly after the event.


This event lasts through June 14, 2013.. Visit this forum often to view responses to your questions and the questions of other community members.

32 Replies 32

Richard Atkin


Are the new 3850 / 5760 Controllers equipped with dedicated hardware that runs the NBAR / AVC features, or do they still run in software like on the 5508? And in either case, do you guys have any stats surrounding the performance hit (if any?) when this is enabled?  I can see this being a great feature, especially with the 3850s at the edge, but not if it comes at a significant cost.



Hi Richard,

The 3850 and 5760 are both based on the newest IOS-XE platform which has a number of differing characteristics to the AirOS platform (and other IOS platforms). I have seen NBAR specs published for the ESP platforms, but will need to check with the business unit for specifics and follow-up.


Thanks Richard, it'd be good to know what you find out.

Hi Richard,

I checked with the business unit on NBAR/AVC performance numbers and none are published yet.  Once we get closer to the release date of code that supports the features, we should publish more info.


Hi Richard,

you mentioned feature parity. I remember that I read that the current IOS XE 3.2 release is based on 7.0 code.

Do you have an ETA on when there will be an update so it will be on par with the newer releases?

Also currently it is required to run code on the AirOS platform to use the new mobility architecture. Any plans on incorporating this into the 7.4 release?



Hi Patrick,

We don't have a stated target date for when the two platforms will be feature paired, but the plan is continued effort through FY14 to bring them together - a trend you will see in the software releases of both over the next year.

Currently there are no plans to add new mobility to the 7.4 train, but it will be in the next release of 7.5 which should be coming out this Summer.


I am with Cisco7961 phones at our office.  I am switching over to RingCentral.  I am told that I need to upgrade fireware on my phones to make it SIP capable or something to that affect.  I need help doing this.  THanks.

Hello Jimmy,

The Cisco IP phones can run in either SIP mode or SCCP mode.  This is determined by the code version the phone is running.  There are builds of code for the phone that support SIP or SCCP.  If your phones are currently running in SCCP mode then you will need to install SIP capable code on the phone.  If you have any further questions regarding converting your phone to SIP please go ahead and open a TAC case so that we can provide more assistance with this conversion.




the 5760/3850 release notes state that there is no support for outdoor access-points. Given that the only option for them is mesh, it is only a logical consequence.

Once mesh will be supported will this also mean that current outdoor APs series like the 1550 will be supported on the NGWCs?

Also will future mesh support in IOS XE include the ability to configure multiple country codes per WLC when operating mesh APs?

If so, will it also apply to future AireOS releases (>=7.5)?

Current AireOS releases are limited to one country code in order to operate mesh APs.



Hi Patrick,

Yes, mesh support is on the roadmap for the new architecture, which would include indoor & outdoor mesh. However, at this time I am not sure which upcoming release will bring this support.

I know that the single country code issue has come up in discussions -- you are certainly not the only one asking about it. I would urge you to talk with your account team on this topic so that we can prioritize this enhancement accordingly.




i'm not sure if this is the right place for this but i'll ask anyway

i have a 2504 with a number of aps (all joined with ip addresses and upgraded) but i can't get my client to get an ip address

*DHCP Server: Jun 11 15:08:22.196: #DHCP-6-SCOPE_NOT_FOUND: dhcpd.c:244 Dropping packet from (unable to match to a dhcp scope)

i'm using wpa with psk and the credentials are correct

if i plug my laptop into the ap's cable i get an address

have you seen this before

thanks for your views


There could be a number of issues that could cause your clients to not get DHCP. It looks like you have setup DHCP on the WLC itself. In order to proceed, we would likely need to collect more information from your configuration.

I would recommend that you open up a TAC case and we can investigate it further.



is there cisco validated design guide for this new 3850 platform ? Apart from the config guides is there any reference material like config example or tech notes for this.

We have brought 4 of these switches to test it out. Lack of good design documents keep me slow on this. These are the features I am interested

1. Vlan Select (Mapping multiple vlan to single SSID)

2. Netflow configuration

3. AVC



Hi Rasika,

Updates and new content are actively being uploaded to as they are created, but we are aware more Wireless-specific examples are needed.  There are efforts underway to document features, and detail the interop between the WCM and switch service. 

The 5760 deployment guide is out, which has a lot of new content applicable to both 3850 & 5760 and includes info on interface groups:

The current switch netflow features (and other topics) are documented in the config guides section:

Support of NBAR/AVC and netflow features for Wireless is coming out in the next releases of code, planned for later this year and early 2014.  As those releases come out, you should see more feature-specific deployment guides coincide with the release.


Hi There

I am currently in the process of designing an upgrade of wireless NW. I have 75 No of 1131 APs and a few 1242. The WLCs installed are 4402 running 4.2.

I  want to go for upgrade to 802.11n. My questions are

1. Do I have to replace current 4402? or just upgrade the 4402 IOS to 7.x and buy all new APs in 1600 series?

2. If I replace 4402 with 5508 running 7.x, will the current 1131 and 1242 be supported? I know 1131 ans 1242 do not support N type.

3. The current switches are 3750 series, do I have to replace all the switches to Giga, or its not necessary. I understand N type works better with Giga, but if I connect 1600 to 10/100 will be the reception from N type APs

Where can I find the AP and WLC compatibility chart?

I hope they are not too many questions.

Thanks and Regards

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