When deployed, Firetides HotPoint wireless mesh routers ($799 each) automatically form a mesh network, enabling an enterprise to avoid costly standard LAN cabling.
Each HotPoint router includes three standard 10/100M-bps Ethernet ports for connecting access points and other devices. My test network consisted of five HotPoint wireless mesh routers, a NetGear WG602 wireless access point and a Panasonic WV-NM100 network camera.
The routers operate at 802.11b speed and form an IP network supporting multihop, point-to-point and multicast routing. Like the Internet, the wireless mesh network offers multiple redundant communications paths throughout the network. When I pulled one router off my network of five routers, for example, there was no discernible degradation.
I used the products management console to configure my mesh network for private operation with AES encryption. The network also supports third-party VPN and security platforms.
However, the management console doesnt offer the ability to take a router off the network remotely. Thats fine if youre wiring one floor, but if youve wired an entire campus, you probably have better things to do than look for a router thats gone AWOL.
More information is available at www.firetide.com.
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