Roll Your Own Enterprise Wi-Fi
As you can tell by my Wi-Fi focus in The Open-Source Classroom this month, I really love wireless networking. I've implemented wireless solutions for schools on a shoestring budget, and I've helped plan campus-wide rollouts of redundantly controlled enterprise solutions. The one thing I really like about the enterprise solutions is the single point of management. The problem is those controllers and enterprise-capable access points are so darn expensive! That's why I love Ubiquiti.
The UniFi line of products from Ubiquiti is affordable and reliable, but the really awesome feature is its (free!) Web-based controller app. The only UniFi products I have are wireless access points, even though the company also has added switches, gateways and even VoIP products to the mix. Even with my limited selection of products, however, the Web controller makes designing and maintaining a wireless network not just easy, but fun!
The Web controller runs happily on a little Atom Web server, and if it happens to go off-line, the access points keep working independently. If you'd like robust hardware with a powerful Web controller application, but you're not ready to invest the thousands of dollars for a traditional enterprise solution, check out the UniFi product line. If you're half as nerdy as I am, you won't regret the decision!