This document provides information on the most common questions asked
about Cisco Aironet Workgroup Bridges.
What is a Workgroup Bridge?
A. A Workgroup Bridge (WGB) is a small stand-alone unit that can provide a
wireless infrastructure connection for Ethernet-enabled devices. Devices that
do not have a wireless client adapter in order to connect to the wireless
network can be connected to the WGB through the Ethernet port. The WGB
associates to the root AP through the wireless interface. In this way, wired
clients get access to the wireless network. The WGB connects to a hub through a
standard Ethernet port that uses a 10-Base-T connector.
Where can I download the latest software?
A. Cisco Aironet equipment operates best when all the components are
loaded with the most current version of the software. You can download the
latest software and drivers at the
Wireless Software Center.
How do I upgrade the software on a Workgroup Bridge?
A. The procedure can vary according to the firmware version to which you
upgrade as well as the WGB model in which upgrading is done. Complete these
steps explained in
Bridge Firmware in order to upgrade a 350 series WGB with its latest
firmware version 8.89. Refer to the appropriate procedures explained within the
notes of different firmware versions for all other vxworks firmware
How can I manage the Workgroup Bridge?
A. A 340 series WorkGroup Bridge does not have a console connector to
configure. In such cases, configure the Workgroup Bridge with one of these
Install the IP Setup Utility (IPSU) on your PC, then launch IPSU and
configure an IP address and Service Set Identifier (SSID) on the Workgroup
Bridge. IPSU is available at
registered customers only)
By default, the SSID of the Workgroup Bridge is
tsunami, and it tries to acquire an IP address over the
wireless link through DHCP. Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) is off by default.
If an IP address is already configured, you might make a Telnet connection or
browse to that IP address. These default settings apply to a 350 series WGB
that run the firmware version 8.89.
You can also reset the WGB to factory defaults, with the use of a
paper clip on the small reset hole, and then use the default address
192.168.200.1 in order to access it if DHCP
Can wireless clients associate to the Workgroup Bridge?
A. No, the Workgroup Bridge is itself a wireless client. It is used in
order to attach wired clients to the wireless backbone.
How do I save the configurations on WorkGroup
A. There is no explicit method or command to save your configuration
changes. Changes you make are automatically saved to nonvolatile Flash memory
each time you set or modify a parameter. This ensures the configuration is
maintained during power failures or intentional power outages. Most
configuration settings become effective as soon as the command is executed.
Those that do not immediately become effective are noted in the command
Can Workgroup Bridges work with other IEEE 802.11b devices?
A. No, the Workgroup Bridge works only with other Cisco equipment. It only
communicates to a Cisco AP or Cisco Bridge. It does not communicate with any
other Cisco Aironet wireless networking devices, not even other WGBs, or
devices other vendors manufacture . It uses Aironet Extensions, which are for
all practical purposes proprietary beacons, in order to function with Cisco
APs. It is a Cisco specific device.
With which devices can a Workgroup Bridge associate?
Workgroup Bridge to Access Point (AP)
Workgroup Bridge to Bridge (in AP mode)
Workgroup Bridge to Base Station (in AP mode)
Workgroup Bridge to AP in repeater mode, if the repeater is
associated with a root AP
At what frequency does a Workgroup Bridge communicate?
A. Workgroup Bridges transmit and receive on one of 11 channels within the
2.4 GHz frequency. This frequency is public. Refer to
Characteristics for more information on the radio specifications.
How do I secure the data across the radio link of a Workgroup Bridge?
A. Enable Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) to encrypt the payload of packets
sent across a radio link.
With the software version (8.8) you can add the Workgroup Bridge as a
Light Extensible Authentication Protocol (LEAP) client. The Workgroup Bridge
authenticates to an Access Control Server (ACS). Refer to
the Configuration Menu from the Product Configuration Guide for more
What EAP authentication types can the WGB use when talking to the
A. All AP IOS WGBs can use LEAP, EAP-FAST or EAP-TLS to authenticate to
the upstream AP. PEAP support should not be necessary for the AP1130 and AP1240
because EAP-FAST can support PEAP as a EAP-FAST inner EAP type. The only reason
that lack of PEAP is an issue is if their AAA server only supports PEAP and not
EAP-FAST or EAP-TLS. But in that scenario, they can use the local authenticator
What is a Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) key?
A. A WEP key is a user-defined string of characters used to encrypt and
What is the typical range for a Workgroup
A. The typical range depends on many factors, such as the data rate
(bandwidth) desired, the antenna type and antenna cable length, and the device
that receives the transmission. In an optimal installation, range can be up to
300 feet (90 meters).
What is the speed of the Ethernet port of the Workgroup Bridge?
A. The Ethernet port of the bridge supports 10 Mbps over a 10baseT RJ-45
connector, and only half-duplex is supported.
What are possible sources of interference for the radio frequency link of
the Workgroup Bridge?
A. Interference can come from a number of sources, such as 2.4 GHz
cordless phones, improperly shielded microwave ovens, and wireless equipment
manufactured by other companies. Police radar, electrical motors, and metal
parts of machinery that move can cause interference as well. Refer to
Problems Affecting Radio Frequency Communication for more information.
How do I set the Workgroup Bridge back to its factory default settings?
A. There are several options available in order to reset a 350 series WGB
back to its factory default setting.
If you are telnetting into the WGB, enter the command
Telnet and then the IP address of WGB. Choose the
Diagnostics option from the VxWorks Main Menu. From Diagnostics, choose
Defaults. The Defaults option returns the bridge configuration
to its default factory settings. The bridge erases the currently saved
configuration and executes a restart command.
Choose the Reset option of the Diagnostics menu in
order to reset only selected portions. There are three entry options:
ident_save—all parts of the configuration except the
IP address are defaulted.
radio_default—only the radio configuration is
filter_default—only the filter information is
You can also reset the WGB to factory defaults, with the use of a paper
clip on the small reset hole, and then use the default address 192.168.200.1 if
DHCP fails in order to access it.
You can also use the Web GUI in order to reset the 350 series WGB to
factory default. Open your web browser and type in the IP address of WGB in the
Address field. From the WGB main page, choose to Allow config
changes. Then click on Diagnostics.
The resultant page provides you with a number of items and the
corresponding value column in order to reset your WGB to factory default
settings. Among these items, choose Return to default
configuration in order to reset the WGB to factory defaults.
Choose any of the three values ident_save:,
radio_default:, filter_default: that
correspond to the item "Default parts of the configuration" in order to reset
only selected portions.
What security features does a Workgroup Bridge (WGB) support?
A. The latest WGB firmware on a WGB device supports:
All access point (AP) IOS WGBs (APs that act as a WGB) support
Lightweight Extensible Authentication Protocol (LEAP), EAP-Flexible
Authentication via Secure Tunneling (EAP-FAST) or EAP-Transport Layer Security
(EAP-TLS) to authenticate to the upstream AP. Protected EAP (PEAP) support
should not be necessary for the P1130 and AP1240 because EAP-FAST can support
PEAP as an EAP-FAST inner EAP type. The only reason that lack of PEAP could be
an issue is if their AAA server only supports PEAP and not EAP-FAST or EAP-TLS.
But in that scenario, they could use the local authenticator with EAP-FAST.
They also support Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA).
How many devices can the Workgroup Bridge support?
A. The Workgroup Bridge supports up to eight MAC addresses on the wired
Ethernet segment. But, when a 1200 series access point works as a Workgroup
Bridge, it can handle up to 254 clients on the Ethernet side, while it presumes
that no other wireless clients are associated to the root bridge/AP to which
this AP in WGB mode is associated.
But, keep in mind that when the AP acts in a WGB mode, the AP takes on
the association at the client level, which means it is not a true bridge. So it
is always advisable to limit the users to a small or reasonable number.
What are some typical applications for a Workgroup Bridge?
Hotels with a wireless backbone that provide connectivity to wired
Printers with built-in Ethernet adapters that connect to a wireless
Stretching wireless infrastructure to wired-only
Wireless-ready classrooms that accommodate wired-only student
Can a Workgroup Bridge be used in an outdoor (building-to-building)
scenario, as a bridge?
A. Yes. Remember that the Workgroup Bridge is treated like a wireless
client. It cannot associate to another Workgroup Bridge. Distance is limited to
about one mile under ideal circumstances (line of sight, antennas, and so
forth) when it connects to an AP.
What Autonomous IOS APs can act as a WGB?
A. The AP1100, AP1130, AP200, AP1240, and BR1310 all support WGB mode of
operation. The AP350 and the BR1400 do not support WGB.
Do LWAPP APs support WGB?
A. WGB functionality is only implemented on autonomous
IOS APs, not on LWAPP APs.
What are the default settings for a WGB (350
Radio Network Name—tsunami
WEP Encryption Key—3031323334353637383930313233
Association—Mixed Cells Allowed
Can an AP 340 be converted to a WGB?
A. No. AP340s do not have any supported functionality in order to allow
them to serve as a WGB.
Can a 340 WGB be converted to a bridge or AP?
A. No. The 340 WGB cannot be converted to an AP or bridge. The 340 WGB
runs VxWorks, and new Cisco IOS products (such as the br1310) have adapted the
WGB, root/non-root bridge, and AP functionality.
What is the default IP address of a WGB?
A. Once the WGB is restored back to factory defaults, it assigns itself an
IP address of 192.168.200.1.
Is it required that the PC IPSU installed should be on the same subnet as
the Bridge in order to assign an IP address to a WGB via IPSU?
A. No, since IPSU uses IP multicast, it can set the bridge IP address and
SSID when the computer that runs IPSU is on a different subnet than the
What is meant by Bridge Loop? What are the possible causes for a Bridge
Loop to occur?
A. If the Workgroup Bridge is connected to the wired LAN and communicates
with an access point on the same LAN, a network problem known as a bridge loop
can occur. Disconnect the Workgroup Bridge from the wired LAN immediately after
you configure it in order to avoid a bridge loop. A bridge loop can also occur
if two or more workgroup bridges are connected to the same remote hub. Always
connect only one workgroup bridge to a remote hub in order to prevent this
What is the use of Staleout time setting?
A. The Workgroup Bridge management system includes a wired LAN staleout
time setting on the Configuration > Ethernet page. Use this setting in order
to control the number of seconds that the Workgroup Bridge continues to track a
device in its association table when the device is inactive. Enter a value
between 5 and 1000 seconds. Five minutes equals 300 seconds; ten minutes equals
If the same devices are always connected to the Workgroup Bridge, enter
5 for the staleout time setting. If the devices connected to
the Workgroup Bridge change frequently, enter 300 (equal to
five minutes) for the staleout time setting. If you disconnect the Ethernet
cable from the workgroup bridge and reconnect it, the Workgroup Bridge removes
all devices from its association table and relearns them, regardless of the
staleout time setting.
What are the antenna options in a 350 series WGB?
A. The bridge comes with two possible antenna configurations: one captured
antenna or two reverse-TNC antenna connectors to which the user can attach one
or two antennas.
What is the power specification for a WGB350?
A. The power in DC for WGB 350 is +5 Volts and 1.25 Amperes. Actual
current drawn is 600 milli Amperes. The maximum and the minimum range is 5
volts or really close like 4.8-5.2 Volts DC.
Also, a 350 series WGB does not support inline power. It supports only
the direct power. Use a power adaptor, in order to power up, which directly
terminates into the WGB350 power port at the rear panel of the WGB. The power
adaptor model is 100-120V~1.0A/50-60 Hz and the output is +5V to 1.25A.
I am unable to access Workgroup Bridges associated with access point.
A. When a Workgroup Bridge (WGB34x or WGB352) is associated to an access
point, you cannot access the WGB console menus or ping the WGB from a station
on the wired LAN connected to the Ethernet port of the access point. But, you
can access the WGB from any client device connected to the WGB Ethernet port
and from any client device associated to the access point that is associated to
the WGB. Radio traffic between the access point and the WGB is not
What are the different modulation types supported in a 350
A. The different Modulation types supported on a 350 WGB are:
DBPSK @1 Mbps
Differential Binary Phase Shift Keying (DBPSK) Modulation technique
is used by IEEE 802.11-compliant wireless LANs for transmission at 1 Mbps.
DQPSK @ 2 Mbps
Differential Quadrature Phase Shift Keying (DQPSK) Modulation
technique is used by IEEE 802.11-compliant wireless LANs for transmission at 2
CCK @ 5.5 and 11 Mbps
Complementary Code Keying (CCK) Modulation technique is used by IEEE
802.11-compliant wireless LANs for transmission at 5.5 and 11 Mbps.
What is the typical range covered by a 350 series
A. It varies based on the indoor/outdoor usage and the data rate
130 ft (40m) @ 11 Mbps
350 ft (107m) @ 1 Mbps
800 ft (244m) @ 11 Mbps
2000 ft (610m) @ 1 Mbps
What are the Remote configuration options supported in WGB?
A. Use any of these options in order to configure WGB from a remote
I have my AP1200 act as WGB. Can I have my two Antennas on my AP to work
in WGB mode?
A. If your access point has two radios, either the 2.4-GHz radio or the
5-GHz radio can function in Workgroup Bridge mode. When you configure one radio
interface as a Workgroup Bridge, the other radio interface is automatically
How do I configure my AP acting as WGB to dynamically switch between
parent access points based on signal reception?
A. Use this command in order to configure the Workgroup Bridge as a mobile
When you enable this setting, the Workgroup Bridge scans for a new
parent association when it encounters a poor Received Signal Strength Indicator
(RSSI), excessive radio interference, or a high frame-loss percentage. With the
use of these criteria, a Workgroup Bridge configured as a mobile station
searches for a new parent association and roams to a new parent before it loses
its current association. When the mobile station setting is disabled, the
default setting, the Workgroup Bridge does not search for a new association
until it loses its current association.
Refer to the
a Workgroup Bridge for Roaming section for more information.
What is the maximum number of Access Points a WGB can be configured in
order to attempt association?
A. You can enter MAC addresses for up to four parent access points. The
Workgroup Bridge attempts to associate to MAC address 1 first. If that access
point does not respond, the Workgroup Bridge tries the next access point in its
parent list and so forth. But, keep in mind that at a time a WGB can be
associated with only one AP. This list of MAC addresses only denotes the
maximum number of APs to which a WGB can sequentially send its association
request and attempt to associate.
How does an AP treats a WGB by default? Is it possible to change this
A. An AP treats a WGB by default as a Client Device. Use the
infrastructure-client command as the radio interface
configuration command in order to configure access points and bridges to treat
Workgroup Bridges as infrastructure devices. The treatment of a Workgroup
Bridge as an infrastructure device means that the access point reliably
delivers multicast packets, which includes Address Resolution Protocol (ARP)
packets, to the Workgroup Bridge. The configuration of access points and
bridges to treat a Workgroup Bridge as a client device allows more Workgroup
Bridges to associate to the same access point but at the same time, this does
not ensure reliable delivery of Multicast packets. With reduced reliability,
the access point cannot confirm whether multicast packets reach the intended
Workgroup Bridge, so Workgroup Bridges at the edge of the coverage area of the
access point might lose IP connectivity.
How many WGB can associate to a single AP?
A. When the AP treats WGB as a client device, which occurs by default, the
minimum 20 WGB can associate to an AP.
What do the LEDs on the top of the Workgroup Bridge mean?
A. Refer to
the Top Panel Indicators.
What type of Ethernet cable do I need to use in order to connect my end
device to the Workgroup Bridge?
A. The type of cable depends on the type of device to which you connect.
The Ethernet port on the Workgroup Bridge is not internally crossed, so use the
same guidelines you would with any other end device: straight-through cable to
a hub or switch, crossover cable to another end device.
PC --> [Crossover Cable] --> Workgroup Bridge
Hub --> [Straight-through Cable] --> Workgroup Bridge
How can I tell if my Workgroup Bridge is associated?
A. There are three different methods you can use in order to tell whether
your Workgroup Bridge is associated:
Check the system LED on the top panel. If it is solid green, the
Workgroup Bridge is associated.
Make a Telnet connection to your Workgroup Bridge. Choose
Main > Association > Display from the
Check the association table of your Access Point (AP) or your bridge
in AP mode in order to see if the Workgroup Bridge shows up under
Does a WGB support Fast Secure Roaming?
A. A Workgroup Bridge device does not support Fast Secure Roaming. This is
because Fast Secure Roaming requires CCKM support, which is not available in a
WGB device, whereas, a 1300 series Wireless Bridge that acts in WGB mode
supports Fast Secure Roaming.
Does a WGB support multiple VLANs in it?
A. No. A Cisco WGB device does not support multiple VLANs in it. A 1100
AP, however, that acts in WGB mode can support multiple VLANs in it but with
The VLANs must be assigned on both the root AP and WGB
The WGB must be connected to a dot1Q-capable
The Infrastructure SSID must be mapped to the native VLAN on root and
Note: The WGB associates on the Infrastructure SSID.
With this configuration, it is possible to associate WGB (WGB BVI
interface) as a Native VLAN and have wired clients configured behind a dot1q
switch associated to different (non-Native) VLANs.
Is VLAN trunking supported through the Workgroup Bridge?
A. The role of a Workgroup Bridge is to extend the Wireless backbone to a
wired client. When you use a WGB, wired clients cannot be in multiple VLANs. A
root/non-root bridging construction is used for the extension of the wired
network to another site over wireless.. Root/non-root bridges can handle
WGBs do support VLANs when they operate in infrastructure mode. The
problem is that infrastructure mode is configured on the root AP (interface
command infrastructure-client). As infrastructure client is not available in
LWAPP, VLANs are not supported on WGBs when WGBs associate to LWAPP APs.
Is there a comparable solution for the Workgroup Bridge available in a
Lightweight Access Point Protocol (LWAPP) environment?
A. Cisco Aironet autonomous access points that operate in WGB mode can now
associate to Cisco Aironet Lightweight Access Points (except Cisco Airespace
AP1000 Series Access Points) to provide an 802.11 wireless connection to wired
devices. The WGB is supported only in client mode and not in infrastructure
mode and must run Cisco IOS Software Release 12.4(3g)JA or later (on 32-MB
access points) or Cisco IOS Software Release 12.3(8)JEB or later (on 16-MB
access points). WGB functionality is not supported for use with hybrid REAP.