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Feb 07, 2007

Cisco Documentation is Useless

There will be a special place in hell reserved for hardware/software vendors whose products should interoperate but whose documentation is so piss-poor it becomes a Sherlock Holmes like effort to make everything work.

As an example if your fancy new 1130AG access point won't power up the radios via a Power Over Ethernet connection supplied by an injector don't include a reference to a technote that isn't included in the box (definitely a WTF moment). Especially when the note is critical to the devices operation and would only take 2 to 3 lines of space to include in the original setup documentation.


In case anyone else runs into a similar problem heres the appropriate reference -

* Cisco Aironet and WLAN Controller Product Power Options

Of course for any of that to be useful you need to go through a painful 'discovery' process - first you have to determine why the access point comes up and pairs with the wireless LAN controller but the radios don't come up. Then you have to spot the error about power (either with a serial console session or in the controller log), scratch your head a little when it works with an ac-adaptor but not PoE, discover the reference in the skimpy setup document, look for the technote reference, discover its not in the box, search Cisco and get sidetracked with the whole IOS versus LWAPP (one will let you enable the radios via web interface the other will not and it seems entirely random as to wether the device will ship with IOS or LWAPP) and then twig that the injector is the problem and that the command needs to be issued to the access point from the controller (you can't issue the command to the access point itself unless you have LWAPP so you go through some hoops trying to re-flash the device before realising this isn't necessary).


Someone needs to give their documentation (online & print) team a good kicking.

Other than that the combination of the 4402 WLAN Controller and 1100/1130AP's works really really well :-)

[/spleen] | [permalink] | [2007.02.07-19:58.00]