Wireless Access

New Contributor

303 can't join 6.5.x cluster

The customer has a small cluster of 103s and 207s running 6.5.x, they bought a few 303s to expand the network and we have discovered that they won't connect to the 6.5.x virtual controller becuase their base firmware is 8.3.


The customer left cisco for excatly this reason, model incompatibility.

This is very poor model support from Aruba.


Ok, I understand that older models (103,205 etc) cannot run the new 8.x firmware due to hw restrictions, but why can't the 303 be "downgraded" to 6.5.x??


Anyone I assume would gladly give up the extra features of 8.x to retain compatibility of 6.5.x, especially those with current hw not able to upgrade to 8.x and looking for more economical upgrade solutions.


We asked no chance of a swap, now have to explain to customer.

Super Contributor II

Re: 303 can't join 6.5.x cluster



Sorry to hear about your situation. A few words of advice would be to avoid mix´n matching 802.11n and 802.11ac APs in the same location. I´ve seen clients make poor decisions when they got both to choose from. Even with AP-205 though you´d be in the same boat.


I don´t have any details on why new hardware can´t be downgraded but it should be because that code has no way of knowing about hardware that doesn´t exist yet, we´re talking code directly interacting with radio chipsets and antennaes here :D


So to proposed solutions (I asume swopping old APs are not an option)


1. Deploy a controller and licenses. All those APs can run controller based AOS 8.3. 


2. Make 2 IAP clusters. One cluster holding the old APs runing the old code and one cluster holding the new 303 APs running 8.3. If you can separate them physically in the target location the downsides of this setup could be minimized. If the customer have Airwave it´s easy to use that as a management plane for both.


Hope it works out for you and your customer,

Christoffer Jacobsson | Aranya AB
Aruba Partner Ambassador
Aruba: ACMX #537 ACCP ACDP | CWNP: CWNE #306
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