Wireless Access

Occasional Contributor I

Controller and / or AP Licensing

Greetings All,


I'm looking to purchase the Aruba 7210 wireless controller along with 30 AP-335 wireless APs and 8 AP-334 wireless APs for my organization.

I'm a little confused about the licensing though, so I'm hoping someone can help me out with this.

Do I need to purchase a license for each of the APs that I intend to connect to the controller?  If so, how do I determine exactly which license I need?  Do I also have to purchase a license for the controller itself?


For example:  I'm seeing item JW500AAE which is labeled as Aruba PEF VIA License for 7210 Controller E-LTU.  The cost on this is about $16,000.  Then I see JW472AAE Aruba Controller Per AP Capacity License E-LTU for $75.00 each.


So, basically, I'm getting really confused on exactly what I need to purchase to get this project rolling.  I would have thought that the APs would have come with a license (especially for the asking price of $1,600 or so per AP.)  But when I contacted the vendor, they said I needed to buy a license for each AP on top of the unit cost.  They also advised me that the licenses have to be bought again after a set period of time.


Any advice is very much appreciated!

Occasional Contributor I

Re: Controller and / or AP Licensing

Follow-Up to my post:


The JW500AAE Aruba PEF VIA License for 7210 Controller E-LTU appears to be for a firewall, which I'm not interested in deploying or using.


Based on what I have been able to find so far, I'm guessing I only need to purchase the Capacity licenses for each AP I want to connect to the 7210 controller.  (JW472AAE)


Am I understanding this correctly?

MVP Guru

Re: Controller and / or AP Licensing

PEF-VIA is basically to support the VIA VPN Agent.


Most of our customers have LIC-AP + LIC-PEFNG and many + LIC-RFP.


The LIC-PEFNG allows role-based access, stateful firewalling of client traffic and AppRF application recognition and prioritization.

LIC-RFP allows advanced RF Features including Wireless IDS/IPS.


Please work with your Aruba partner or local Aruba sales team to decide which licenses you need, in what quantity, and what they give you.

If you have urgent issues, please contact your Aruba partner or Aruba TAC (click for contact details).
Occasional Contributor I

Re: Controller and / or AP Licensing

Yes, I contacted your sales team a few days ago and was told I'd have a call-back or an email between then and a day or so ago.


They still haven't called me back or emailed me, so I'll try them again.


I'll post the answer I find out on here for others to benefit from.

Occasional Contributor I

Re: Controller and / or AP Licensing

I finally got in touch with one of my vendors who was able to explain the licensing to me.  The answer is:


For 90% of most deployments, 2 licenses are typically used:

1)  JW472AAE - Aruba Controller Per AP Capacity License

This is a perpetual license that allows one access point to be managed by the controller.  You need one of these for every access point you want to connect to and manage with the controller.  Your basic license.


2)  JW473AAE - Aruba Controller Per AP PEF License

This is a license that must be acquired on top of the JW472AAE license.  This license isn't mandatory, but it allows more advanced role-based access controls on a per AP basis.  (Like if you wanted to have a restricted network and an open network, but you had one or two devices that normally connect to the open network but need access to resources only available on the restricted network.)


It's important to note that the PEF license augments the capacity license - it does not replace it.  (Think:  more $$ to use more features.)


My vendor said that for 90% of most deployments they see, the above two license types are really the only two to be concerned with.  There are others that offer increasing functionality and features at an exponential price increase.


Also, Aruba does offer non-perpetual licenses that must be renewed every year.  So, be very careful and talk to your vendor before you actually buy any licenses.  In most scenarios, you'll probably want the perpetual licenses.  There are; however, cases where an annual license may be a better fit for you.


In closing:  I noticed that there seem to be large-quantity license "packs" available at significantly better prices than buying the licenses individually.  For certain enterprise deployments, these options may be more viable.


My Opinion:  It honestly confuses me why Aruba has made this process so complicated.  They have two series of AP:  IAP and AP.  IAP can work with or without a controller whereas AP are marketed specifically for use with a controller.  Why they charge $1500+ for an AP and then force you to pay more just to be able to use it seems a little "greedy" to me.  I'd say that if you're going to market a product to work with another product, the licensing should be included in the price - especially at that price point.


Don't get me wrong ... Aruba's got some really nice high-quality stuff ... but you can tell they like some of their stuff just a little too much.

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