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Optimizing client switching between Access Points

New Contributor III
I have a 7372 and R600 is there a way to set this up so that devices pick the AP providing the strongest signal?

I originally set them up with the same SSID but then all devices seemed to pickup on the 7372 instead of the R600, so right now I have two separate SSIDs

You’ll need a controller to do this satisfactorily.

Valued Contributor II
If you have a controller, you will be able to enable 802.11r/k fast transitions. In my experience, I've found a lot of mobile clients will roam more aggressively on a network that supports this roaming standard.

Even without such, you can try to use the "smart-roam" functionality. Basically it causes the AP to pretend to go out of range (e.g. ignore you and send you disassociation packets) hoping it will convince the client to roam. You can check the support documents on smart-roam (short story: Set a roam factor of 3 to 5 if you have decent network coverage, be on the lookout for unexpectedly dropped connections).

You should also try increasing the bss-minrate to 5.5 or so in order to encourage clients with a weak connection to roam instead of trying a lower data rate.

Also, since you are combining a 2x2:2 N (300mbit) with a 3x3:3 AC (1300mbit) AP, you probably also want the AC AP to broadcast a specific AC SSID... Almost no client roaming algorithm I've seen is smart enough to understand that, for example 50% signal strength on a 3x3:3 AC AP is worth more real world throughput than even 100% signal strength on a 2x2:2 N AP. That way, you can pin desktops/laptops known to be in reach of the AC AP to stay on it. I've had a ton of problems when I mixed N and AP AP's that my desktops would roam over to N AP's because they appeared slightly stronger.

At the end of the day, though, other than devices that support 802.11r/k, I have not found adding a controller to make a huge difference in roaming behavior.

Hi - in the zone director screens where to you go to turn this on

"If you have a controller, you will be able to enable 802.11r/k fast transitions."

New Contributor III
thank you for your response. that is definitely helpful, so net is that I would need a zone director to help with this, and that different SSID's are best for the two APs given that one is n and the other is ac.

So now a question on zone director. Does the zone director 1000 provide all the functionality you mentioned or do I need to have the 1100?

Thank you