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Can an AP-305 join a virtual controller?

Our company recently bought a couple of AP-305 access points. Here lies a problem as we don't have a mobility controller. In various documentation there's mentioned an AP can however be turned into a IAP model at first boot when it cannot find a mobility controller. As I understand it upgrades its firmware to work in controllerless mode when it finds a virtual controller in the same LAN.


Did I understand this correctly? If so, should this work with an IAP-205 which is in virtual controller mode? As far as I tried this morning, the AP-305 doesn't show up in de WebGUI of the 205. And looking at a trace I made, I don't see the 305 trying to connect to the virtual controller IP. It just shows it's sending out ADP broadcasts and multicasts and does DNS lookups for aruba-master.


Can someone share some light on this matter?


Thank you,



Guru Elite

Re: Can an AP-305 join a virtual controller?

Unfortunately an AP-305 cannot join an Instant Cluster.

*Answers and views expressed by me on this forum are my own and not necessarily the position of Aruba Networks or Hewlett Packard Enterprise.*
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Re: Can an AP-305 join a virtual controller?

The misunderstanding is that while an IAP-305 can be converted from Instant to controller based, the AP-305 can not be converted from controller based to Instant. To have the 305 going the Instant virtual controller, it needs to originally be an IAP-305.


If that is the functionality you needed, it sounds like you'll need to exchange the AP-305s for IAP-305s through your reseller.

Charlie Clemmer
Aruba Customer Engineering
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