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WLAN is emerging as a strong access technology for the enterprise and consumer markets. Enterprises are deploying WLAN to manage the deluge of WiFi-enabled devices, content streaming in enterprise environments and seamless connectivity in corporate LANs. Service providers are further entering into WiFi because their end customers need uninterrupted service across locations, such as airports and cafés, and the limited availability of 3G/4G bandwidth requires the provisioning of alternatives like WLAN.

Aricent offers comprehensive services and software frameworks for diverse WLAN requirements across a multitude of industries. With deep domain expertise in WiFi, silicon, testing, applications and product development, our solutions and expertise substantially reduce costs and time to market for equipment manufacturers.

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WLAN Software Frameworks

Aricent’s WLAN software frameworks enable device and network equipment manufacturers to deliver innovative solutions across the WLAN ecosystem including access points, wireless mesh networks, WLAN controllers, offload systems, Cloud WiFi and small cell integrations on access points.

WLAN Access Point (AP) Framework

Aricent’s WLAN AP framework supports a comprehensive set of access point features, including:

  • Hotspot 2.0
  • IPv4 and IPv6
  • Security—WEP, WPA, WPA2, WAPI
  • MAC filtering
  • AP load balancing
  • Traffic isolation by SSID, VLAN, STA and more
  • Time synchronization with NTP
  • WiFi management—fragment threshold, RTS threshold, beacon interval and more

WLAN Controller Framework

Aricent’s WAN Controller framework supports several important controller functions across WLAN management, security, routing and switching, including:

  • CAPWAP—AP provisioning, mobility management
  • RF management—static and dynamic
  • AP/SSID profile management
  • Security modes—WEP, WPA, WPA2
  • VLAN, spanning tree, link aggregation
  • IPv4/v6 routing, IGMP
  • AP load balancing
  • Inter and intra-AC management

Control and Provisioning of Wireless Access Points (CAPWAP)

The IETF-defined CAPWAP protocol provides standard, interoperable methods to enable a controller to manage a collection of wireless access points. CAPWAP offers configuration and device management, allowing for configurations and firmware to be pushed to access points

Aricent’s CAPWAP software framework is a portable implementation of the CAPWAP specification defined in the IETF RFCs. The software comprises of two components—a client for WLAN access points and a controller for WLAN control switches or servers. Each component is optional depending upon the type of device the software is required to support.

The software implements support for all the message types, message elements, protocol timers and protocol variables defined in the IETF CAPWAP specification. It also implements support to use IPv4 or IPv6 transport.

Hotspot 2.0 Framework for Seamless Mobility

Aricent’s WLAN AP framework supports Hotspot 2.0 features, including the Access Network Query Protocol and Generic Advertisement Service Protocol. Other key features of Aricent’s Hotspot 2.0 implementation include:

  • Based on WPA2-Enterprise
  • Standards-based service discovery
  • IEEE 802.11u standard-compliant solution
  • Better management and monetization of hotspots
  • 3G-like end-user experience for WiFi authentication and roaming
  • Stronger authentication based on extensible authentication protocol (EAP)

Access Network Query Protocol (ANQP) for WiFi Hotspot 2.0

The Access Network Query Protocol (ANQP) is the query and response protocol for a WiFi station (STA) to automatically discover available WiFi hotspots and to automatically authenticate the stations using hotspot-supported Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) mechanisms.

Aricent’s ANQP software is a portable implementation of the ANQP protocol as defined in the IEEE 802.11u specification. It can be used by WiFi stations to automatically discover available WiFi hotspots and authenticate the stations using EAP mechanisms. It comprehensively implements the Hotspot 2.0 specification, which defines the requirements and additional information elements carried by ANQP for Hotspot 2.0-compliant operators and service providers.

Generic Advertisement Service (GAS) Protocol for WiFi Hotspot 2.0

Aricent’s GAS protocol software is a portable implementation as defined in the IEEE 802.11u specification. The software provides Layer 2 transport of an advertisement protocol’s frames between a mobile device and a server in the network prior to authentication. It allows a mobile device to query an access point, prior to association, in order to ascertain the network’s configuration and reachability information. The access point is responsible for the relay of a mobile device’s query to a server in the carrier’s network and for delivering the server’s response back to the mobile.