Is software-only upgrade to 802.11n possible ?

I recently bought a 877 router. It has up to 802.11g standard.

With the "n" standard having now been ratified, I am curious if it is technically possible for Cisco to enable the "n" service on existing equipment with just firmware upgrades ? Or does that require truly different hardware and frequencies that would not be available on equipment Cisco has been selling in recent months ?

In other words, is it possible Cisco has been waiting for official ratification of the "n" standard before unleashing software upgrades that enable "n" this on its current products ?

Reply to
JF Mezei
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The last 877W I opened up had an AR5213-based MiniPCI wifi card in, so could have supported A/B/G should Cisco have chosen to enable it, however it's B/G only. I'm going to extrapolate from this that they're not going to add 'N' [which seems to be such a broad term as to be pretty much meaningless] to products that don't already support it. 'show controller do0' should tell you what chipset you have.

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JF Mezei schrieb:

No. the Atheros radio used doesn't support the additional 802.11n features. For the throughput enhancements of 802.11n there is a lot of additional hardware needed.

the Aironet 1250 and new 1140 APs are 802.11n capable.

Reply to
Uli Link

router2#show controller do0 ! interface Dot11Radio0 Radio ATHEROS AR5212, Base Address 0025.8462.45d0, BBlock version 0.01, Softwar0

So, As "Uli Link" said in another message, it looks like I am out of luck. At least I know not to expect it.

But, since I now know the name of the chip...

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Supported Data Rates IEEE 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g Standard Mode 1-54 Mbps Atheros Super A Mode Atheros Super G Mode Atheros Super A/G Mode 1 - 108 Mbps

Some blurb on the "super" mode:

? Super A/G mode includes dynamic 108 Mbps capability, real-time hardware data compression, dynamic transmit optimization and standards-compliant bursting

I wonder if this could have been an early implementation of the "n" ? Atheros now has the 5008 series chips which do formally support "n".

Reply to
JF Mezei

When you see A/G 108 Mbps, that simply means that (with compatible kit on the other side) the product will be able to use a and g (which run at different frequencies) simultaneously, loadbalancing across the two, and getting up to 54 Mb on 5GHz .11a plus up to 54 Mb on 2.4 GHz .11g.

The super-a and super-g modes probably include all the features they mention above, data compression and transit optimization and bursting, for whatever that's worth in real life. HTML may actually be very slightly compressible, so it may even have some effect for particular types of usage.

11n really is a very different kettle of fish, although it does run on both frequencies and the bundling of a and b frequencies is supported in the spec if both products support both frequencies -- many n products only use one, and you can usually tell by whether they are b/g/n or a/b/g/n products.


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