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Cisco and Lucent Equipment
for Wireless Networks

July 26, 2001



Part 1: Equipment characteristics.

In this article we will describe the equipment used for testing. The test results of PC cards ORiNOCO Silver in the "point-to-point" mode can be found in the "Lucent ORiNOCO wireless networks" review.

Access point of the ORiNOCO AP-1000.

An access point of the ORiNOCO AP-1000 is a network bridge for Ethernet networks which has two PCMCIA slots for two ORiNOCO PC Cards working at different frequencies. It allows organizing two access points on one device.

The ORiNOCO AP-1000 is controlled distantly according to the SNMP protocol with the ORiNOCO AP Manager. This software implements initial configuring, control and remote monitoring of the device status.

AP-1000 access point (front view).

AP-1000 access point (back view).
A wireless adapter of the ORiNOCO PC Card is inserted into slot A, a bracket is installed into slot B.

ORiNOCO PC Card (Silver/Gold).

The ORiNOCO PC Card is a base of the series of wireless products of Lucent Technologies. The card contains a radio module and a transceiver, which allow the ORiNOCO devices to form high-speed wireless networks of IEEE 802.11b standard. The ORiNOCO card has low power consumption and improved sensitivity of the receiver.

The ORiNOCO PC Card has 4 data rates: 11 Mbps, 5.5 Mbps, 2 Mbps and 1 Mbps. It allows varying a range and a speed of data transfer, since the less the speed the higher the sensitivity of the receiver and, therefore, the longer the distance.

Another useful feature of the ORINOCO PC Card is a traffic coding function. The Silver card, for example, uses a Wired Equivalent Privacy algorithm (WEP) with a 64-bit key, while the Gold one uses a RC4 algorithm and a 128-bit key.

The ORiNOCO PC Card is compatible with equipment from other manufacturers supporting the IEEE 802.11b standard. Besides, the card supports the equipment of IEEE 802.11 standard at 1 and 2 Mbps speed.

The ORiNOCO PC Card works in the following products:

  • AP-1000 access point;
  • ORiNOCO/EC adapter;
  • Adapter for ISA (PCI) bus;
  • As a PC card in notebooks and other devices and as a PCMCIA port.

Technical characteristics.

Transmitter output power 15 dB
Power consumption (from a 5V source)
Stand-by mode 9 mA
Reception 185 mA
Transfer 285 mA
Range of operating temperatures 0-55 C
Humidity up to 95%
Transfer rate
11 Mbps
5.5 Mbps
2 Mbps
1 Mbps
Radius covered with a built-in antenna
Open space (field)
160 m
270 m
400 m
550 m
Office with wooden partitions
50 m
70 m
90 m
115 m
Building with main walls
25 m
35 m
40 m
50 m
Sensitivity of the receiver
- 82 dB
- 87 dB
- 91 dB
- 94 dB
Delay in transmission
65 ns
225 ns
400 ns
500 ns

Access point of the Cisco Aironet Series AP340.

The access point is meant for connection of wireless clients to the network of the main office or a service provider. It works in the range allowable for wireless data transfer. At the expense of a progressive modulation method the data rate in the channel can reach 11 Mbps. The IEEE 802.11 standard is supported at 1 and 2 Mbps providing the compatibility with the equipment from other manufacturers.

AP340 access point (front view).

AP340 access point (view from the side of connectors).

The radio cards of the series AIR-PCM340, AIR-PCI340, AIR-ISA340 and universal clients AIR-WGB340 can be used as clients. External antennae provides the covering area up to 6-8 km without additional amplifiers in use. With the amplifiers the range increases up to 15 km (in case of a nondirectional antenna).

Technical characteristics.

Maximum number of clients 2048
Cable protocols supported IEEE 802.3: 10Base-T, 10Base-2, 10Base-5
Local configuration (Serial EIA-232 DB-9 female)
Remote configuration HTTP, Telnet, FTP or SNMP BOOTP
SNMP MIB I, MIB II
Indicators System, Ethernet Network Activity, Wireless LAN Activity
Sensitivity of the receiver -90dBm @ 1Mbps
-88dBm @ 2Mbps
-87dBm @ 5.5Mbps
-84dBm @ 11 Mbps
Output power 30mW (US, Canada, ETSI)

4.5mW/MHz (EIRP, Japan)

Temperature f exploitation From 0C to 55C
Relative humidity from 10% to 90%
Dimensions 16cm x 12cm x 3.68cm
Weight 0.35 kg
Power supply unit 90-264 VAC, 47/63 Hz to 12 VDC @ 1.5A

Modifications of the series.

AIR-AP340E2C 340 Series AP with two built-in antennae, without data coding
AIR-AP340E2R 340 Series AP with 2 SHF connectors RP-TNC, without data coding
AIR-AP341E2C 340 Series AP with two built-in antennae, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-AP341E2R 340 Series AP with 2 SHF connectors RP-TNC, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-AP341S1C 340 Series AP with one built-in antenna, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-AP342E2C 340 Series AP with two built-in antennae, data coding with a 128-bit WEP key
AIR-AP342E2R 340 Series AP with 2 SHF connectors RP-TNC, data coding with a 128-bit WEP key

Note: The tested model is marked with yellow color.

PCMCIA AIR-PCM340 Card.

The AIR-PCM340 client device is a PCMCIA card. It is a client device for access points of the AIR-AP340 series. At the expense of the progressive modulation method the data rate in the channel can reach 11 Mbps. The IEEE 802.11 standard is supported at 1 and 2 Mbps speeds, thus providing compatibility with the equipment from other manufacturers supporting this standard.

For desktop computers with an ISA or PCI bus there are AIR-ISA340 and AIR-PCI340 models.

Usage of external antennae is allowable.

Technical characteristics.

Indicators System, Ethernet Network Activity, Wireless LAN Activity
Sensitivity of the receiver - 90dBm @ 1Mbps
- 88dBm @ 2Mbps
- 87dBm @ 5.5Mbps
- 84dBm @ 11 Mbps
Output power 30MW (US, Canada, ETSI)
Temperature f exploitation From -30 C to 70 C
Relative humidity 95%
Dimensions 5.4 cm x 11.1 cm x 0.5 cm
Weight 0.045 kg
Power consumption 490mA in the data transfer mode,
280mA in the data reception mode,
5mA in the sleep mode

Modifications of the series.

Number according to catalogue Card type Description
AIR-ISA340 ISA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, without data coding
AIR-ISA341 ISA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-ISA342 ISA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 128-bit WEP key
AIR-PCI340 PCI 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, without data coding
AIR-PCI341 PCI 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-PCI342 PCI 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 128-bit WEP key
AIR-PCM340 PCMCIA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, without data coding
AIR-PCM341 PCMCIA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 40-bit WEP key
AIR-PCM342 PCMCIA 340 Series 11 Mbps Adapter, data coding with a 128-bit WEP key

Note: The tested model is marked with yellow color.

In the next part we will test Cisco products from the Aironet series and compare them with equivalent solutions from Lucent.

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