Likelihood to Recommend
[Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller's] software quality has been shed in recent years. The only problem I have with it is its inability to work with older Cisco Access Points. However, that's to be expected for any deployment. While the controller's UI works well, some areas could be improved. API integrations lack flexibility. [I feel] it's time for policy redesign. It can be a little difficult to determine coding quality.
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Fortinet offers great Security features and is one of the leaders on that, and integrating Wireless LAN infrastructure with Access points proved to work rather seamlessly. Ease of management, single platform and ability to customize licensing as per needs were elements in favor of adding the Wireless LAN solution from Fortinet to our security portfolio.
Read full review Pros The GUI on the Cisco 8540 WLC is much better designed than other Cisco products. Its easy to navigate between the different settings to find what is needed. The AP groups allows touching multiple APs at one time. It also allows us to create standard SSIDs that can be used at all sites that connect back to it, this saves a lot of time instead of hitting each site with a local controller. Read full review Really easy to configure Really easy to manage Great value for price Read full review Cons Code quality is a bit hit and miss. This will be great for a while, then things will be bad for a while, then we'll do it again. The UI of the controller works, but could do with a refresh, and I would like to see some improvement on layout and organization. The constant code/firmware upgrades and the QA of new code could be better. Maybe the compatibility with old Cisco Access Points could be improved, but it's normal in all kinds of deployments. Read full review In the web portal, it would be nice if you could create a customer, assign that customer all the devices in the solution, and have a single pane glass to manage them all. Right now you need to access different web links to manage the devices. The security feature set could be a bit more sophistication, like an Arista AP which polices the air. Read full review Usability
Very well made product. Very stable. We have had no issues administering the 8540.
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It is a better product. The evolution is positive.
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Fortinet offers excellent support. They will work with you until the solution is doing what it is designed to do, within its capabilities. They also do an excellent to follow-up with the end-user prior to closing the ticket.
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We have [done] some work before with the Cisco 3504 product, but the more recent Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller provides a wider range of capabilities for managing the wireless network and each individual device [and] also being able to handle more users. Unfortunately, we didn't test and deploy equivalent products from other concurrent companies.
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as a stand-alone product, the Fortinet wireless LAN solution isn't the most powerful, nor compelling out there. Others, like Cisco Meraki, offer great products, with added wifi features at a similar price point, but where Forti shines, is when integrated into a network with firewall enablement such as
. Overall, it stacks up well with others and is a solution that needs to be evaluated in a purchasing project.
Read full review Return on Investment The Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller allows you to reduce your hardware footprint of wireless controllers deployed in your environment. Instead of having a controller per site deployed, you can have a couple of 8540 controllers in your data center that can handle up 6000 Access Points. Some of the savings on hardware cost is offset by the cost of redundant WAN circuits. The access points will continue to function when connectivity to the Cisco 8540 Wireless Controller is unreachable, but it will not allow any new connections in that wireless environment. Read full review Less management cost Less expensive to buy Read full review ScreenShots