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Why Ruckus?

An Executive Comparison with Aruba Networks

The Aruba Position

The Bottom Line


Aruba, as a company, is not focused on Wi-Fi it wants

Aruba is a security company that uses wireless to sell firewalls


and other security products. Their basic premise: Wireless
is insecure and you need an entire security infrastructure to

to be a security company instead


Ruckus has proven performance in both clean and the
toughest RF environments and high density

deploy it. A secondary focus is the concept of secure mobility.


This encompasses both wired and wireless LANs.

Offers very little interference avoidance or mitigation

The Ruckus Position

robustness, ease of use and performance. The entire product

Unlike other Wi-Fi vendors, Ruckus is a best-of-breed solution

line is designed around these tenets and it shows.

that is laser focused on Wi-Fi reliability, robustness, ease of use


and performance. Ruckus is the only Wi-Fi vendor that builds

Ruckus is the only Wi-Fi vendor that builds their APs and

their APs and controllers from the ground up to deliver incred-

controllers from the ground up to deliver. Everything from the

ible performance for all clients. Everything is tightly coupled

antennas, AP hardware, software and management is designed

the hardware, radios, antennas and software. This tight integra-

by the same engineering group with the same goals. This tight

tion makes no compromises.

integration makes no compromises.

Solution Analysis

Bi-Directional Aggregate TCP Throughput


(75% uplink, 25% downlink)

Whether this central argument makes sense or not depends on


the state of your organizations current infrastructure. The key
question to ask is, Do I care more about security than Wi-Fi

104 Mbps

Ruckus 7363

performance?
84 Mbps

Aruba AP125

Aruba spreads its focus on a wide variety of products several


0

of which have very little to do with Wi-Fi such as Ethernet


switches, intrusion detection, VPN servers and firewalls.
At the heart of Aruba MOVE, Mobility Controllers deliver a single
set of network services to manage security, policy and network
performance for every user and device on the network, regardless
of access type. Aruba Networks web site, June 2011

Why Ruckus?
Ruckus believes it has a better solution: make Wi-Fi an incredible experience. Unlike other Wi-Fi vendors, Ruckus is a
best-of-breed solution that is laser focused on Wi-Fi reliability,

20

40

60

80

100

120

Mbps per second

Figure 1 - Bi-Directional Throughput with 60 Clients


(Data courtesy of Toms Hardware)

Lower TCO With a lower acquisition price per AP, return on investment and TCO happen far quicker. Because Ruckus APs cover approximately twice the footprint of an equivalent Aruba you can get full
coverage with up to 40% fewer APs. This reduces total AP cost, control-

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Why Ruckus?
ler cost, licensing and support as well as few CAT-5 cabling runs and

ment model is so compelling Aruba has recently offered an

Ethernet switch ports.

local data forwarding solution, but without the WLAN control-

Ruckus is also regarded as one of the easiest enterprise Wi-Fi

ler a large number of capabilities are lost.

solutions to deploy, manage and support. Contrast Aruba,


which is widely known as one of the most complex Wi-Fi solutions to install, manage and support. Typical Aruba training

Ruckus understands everyone already has firewalls, Ethernet


switches, VPN servers, and so on equipment from vendors in

easily goes into week or even a month to cover all topics.

the Gartner Magic Quadrant for their class and have decades

Competency Ruckus does Wi-Fi and is not distracted by

compelling reason to ditch these products for new solutions

other, unrelated technologies or conflicting business require-

that are more about convenience than best of breed.

ments. It is a best of breed solution backed by a level of serious

of development and experience behind them. There is no

Wi-Fi expertise seldom seen.

The LAN is not dead. There will always be wired networks,

Performance Ruckus equipment has been tested and proven

a fantastic point:

servers, Internet connections and more. Wi-Fi technology is at

again and again by analysts, 3rd party reviewers and customers.

It boasts unbroken security and encryption standard in

every Wi-Fi client sold.


TCP Throughput with Interference
(Single 2.4 GHz client at 100 LoS uplink)

76 Mbps

Ruckus 7363

Virtually all laptops and smartphones are Wi-Fi enabled.

iPads and similar ultra-portable tables are fast replacing

much laptop usage and functionality and like smartphones,


there is no wired connection option.

33 Mbps

Aruba AP125
0

10

20

30


40

50

60

70

80

Mbps per second

Figure 2 - Single Client Performance w/Interference


Wireless speeds that can provide equivalent wired user

experience.

Even older, legacy Wi-Fi devices interoperate seamlessly

with the latest technology.

(Data courtesy of Toms Hardware)

Stability With year over year revenue growth doubling,


Ruckus is not cash-strapped or resource poor. It is profitable
and putting those profits into development of even better
products.
Unmatched video Ruckus knows video like no one else and
holds several patents on IP-based streaming video. Ruckus has
customers using its solution to deliver flawless 1080p HDTV to
90 set top boxes in a single facility. This is simply not possible
with any other solution.

All of these points demand superb, reliable Wi-Fi that quickly


gets wireless clients access to wired resources every time.
Without fail. That kind of functionality requires a company that
knows Wi-Fi inside and out:
By the time you finish reading this document, there will be
more Wi-Fi devices on your network or operating nearby
than there were yesterday and more next week, next month
and next year. If there is one guaranteed prediction for Wi-Fi
its this: Wi-Fi will never get better on its own; through fewer
clients or less interference. Every day will demand even smarter

Reliability Much is made about whether the WLAN control-

WLANs dedicated to keeping performance high and reliable

ler is in or out of the data plane. Ruckus is committed to the

while steering around the every growing RF population.

highest possible performance and uptime. Tunneling all data


through a WLAN controller is simply not feasible. With dualband APs capable of pumping out 600 Mbps of traffic, even
the largest WLAN controller becomes a bottleneck. Ruckus can
tunnel traffic if required, but in general, it polices traffic to make
sure its permitted and then gets out of the way. This deploy-

Get Ahead of the Wi-Fi Crunch


By the time you finish reading this document, there will be
more Wi-Fi devices on your network or operating nearby than
there were yesterday and more next week, next month and
next year. If there is one guaranteed prediction for Wi-Fi its

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Why Ruckus?

this: Wi-Fi will never get better on its own; there will always be
more clients, more interference and less free channel spectrum.
Only Ruckus Wireless gives you the tools you need:
Performance optimized for every client and every environment (not a one size fits all solution)
Airtime Fairness
Band steering
Adaptive RF optimization
Client load balancing
Active interference mitigation not just detection
Intelligent support for demanding application such as
streaming IP video and voice

Ruckus is the only Wi-Fi company that delivers on the promise


of wireless LANs without compromise and without excuses.

Figure 3 - RF Coverage for Aruba AP125


(Data courtesy of Toms Hardware)

Hardware)

ZoneFlex APs are typically 50% faster at range and provide at


least twice the coverage. The end result is outrageously good
Wi-Fi at a fraction of the cost.

Figure 4 - RF Coverage for Ruckus 7363


(Data courtesy of Toms Hardware)

Additional Reading
Toms Hardware Part 1 - performance testing - http://tinyurl.com/toms-hardware1
Toms Hardware Part 2 - performance testing - http://tinyurl.com/toms-hardwarep2
Wired Magazine - Ruckus Wireless in the carrier market - http://tinyurl.com/ruckus-wired1
Network World - Ruckus BeamFlex technology review - http://tinyurl.com/ruckus-nw
Chip-based Beamforming vs. BeamFlex - a comparison of different beamforming techniques - http://tinyurl.com/68ddohp
ZoneDirector Demo on Demand - quick, easy demonstrations - http://tinyurl.com/ruckus-demos

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