Table Of Contents
Release Notes for Cisco Aironet Mini PCI Client Adapter Firmware, Version 5.00.03
This document contains the following sections:
This document describes system requirements, upgrade procedures, and new and changed information for Cisco Aironet mini PCI client adapter firmware release 5.00.03. This release includes the new information discussed on page 4.
You will need the following in order to install and use firmware version 5.00.03:
•A Cisco Aironet 350 series mini PCI card (MPI350)
•A computer running Windows 95, 98, NT, 2000, Me, or XP
•Windows Aironet Client Utility (ACU) version 5.02.005 or greater and Windows mini PCI card driver version 3.4.9 or greater
Note Mini PCI cards use different drivers and firmware than PC, LM, and PCI cards.
•To benefit from the latest security features, access point firmware version 11.10T or greater
Network-EAP Authentication Requires Matching 802.1X Protocol Drafts
In order to use Network-EAP authentication on your wireless network, your client devices and infrastructure devices (access points and bridges) must use the same 802.1X protocol draft. Mini PCI card firmware release 5.00.03 supports draft 10 of the 802.1X protocol standard. Therefore, if client devices use this version of firmware, an access point or bridge to which they associate must also be configured to use draft 10. The table below lists firmware versions for Cisco Aironet products and the drafts with which they comply.
Firmware Version Draft 8 Draft 10 1
Mini PCI card (MPI350)
4.95.08 and later
Other client adapters (PCM34x/35x, LMC34x/35x, and PCI34x/35x)
4.25 and later
Workgroup bridges (WGB34x/352)
8.61 and later
Access points (AP34x/35x)
11.05 and earlier
11.06 and later2
1 The functionality in draft 10 is equivalent to the functionality in draft 11, the ratified draft of the 802.1X standard.
2 The default draft setting in access point and bridge firmware version 11.06 and later is draft 10.
If your clients and infrastructure devices do not have matching 802.1X protocol drafts, upgrade the firmware in these devices to versions with the same draft number. However, if your access points or bridges are using firmware version 11.06 or later, you can use their Authenticator Configuration page to select the draft of the 802.1X protocol that they should use. To set the draft for your access points or bridges, follow the instructions in the Release Notes for Cisco Aironet Access Points for firmware version 11.06 or greater. You can access these Release Notes at the following URL:
Upgrading to a New Firmware Release
This section describes how to upgrade to mini PCI card firmware release 5.00.03.
Determining the Firmware Version
To determine the firmware version that your mini PCI card is currently using, open ACU. Then click the Status icon or select Status from the Commands drop-down menu. The firmware version is displayed in the Status screen.
To upgrade your mini PCI card's firmware to the 5.00.03 release, follow the steps below.
Step 1 Use your computer's web browser to access the following URL:
Step 2 Locate the section for client adapter firmware.
Step 3 Click the link for your client adapter's series (for example, 350 series).
Step 4 Click the latest radio firmware file for mini PCI cards.
Note If your wireless network uses LEAP authentication, remember to select a radio firmware file of the same draft standard as the access points to which your client adapter will be authenticating.
Note If your wireless network uses EAP-TLS or EAP-MD5 authentication, you must select draft 10 of the radio firmware.
Step 5 Read and accept the terms and conditions of the Software License Agreement.
Step 6 Select the firmware file to download it.
Step 7 Save the file to a floppy disk or to your computer's hard drive.
Step 8 Locate the file on your floppy disk or on your computer's hard drive and use an unzip program to extract the image file to a folder.
Step 9 Open ACU; then click the Load Firmware icon or select Load New Firmware from the Commands drop-down menu.
Step 10 Find the location of the new firmware in the Open Window's Look in box. The default location is InstallPath\Firmware, where InstallPath is the directory that ACU was installed in.
Step 11 Click the firmware image file (*.img) so that it appears in the File name box at the bottom of the Open window.
Step 12 Click the Open button. A progress bar displays while the selected image is loaded into the mini PCI card's Flash memory.
Step 13 Click OK when the "Firmware Upgrade Complete!" message appears. The OK button cannot be selected until the process is complete or an error occurs.
New and Changed Information
This section describes new and changed information for release 5.00.03 of the Cisco Aironet mini PCI card firmware.
Ability to Periodically Scan for a Better Access Point Added to ACU
Firmware release 5.00.03 enables the client to look for a better access point if its signal strength becomes low and to switch associations if it finds one. This feature is selectable in ACU through the Periodically Scan For A Better Access Point parameter on the RF Network screen.
Note This parameter is available only if your client adapter is using ACU version 5.02.005 or greater.
Ability to Select Clear Channel Assessment (CCA)
Firmware release 5.00.03 provides the ability to determine whether the channel on which your client adapter will operate is clear prior to the transmission of data. This feature is selectable in ACU through the Clear Channel Assessment parameter on the RF Network screen. The following methods are available from the parameter's drop-down list in ACU:
•Firmware Default (XXX) - The CCA mechanism reports that the channel is busy based on the default value of the client adapter's firmware. The firmware's CCA default value is shown in parentheses. For example, the CCA default value for PCM/LMC/PCI card firmware is Car/Cor, and the default value for mini PCI card firmware is ED.
•Carrier/Correlation (Car/Cor) - The CCA mechanism reports that the channel is busy upon detection of a direct-sequence spread spectrum (DSSS) signal. This signal may be above or below the ED threshold.
•Energy Detect (ED) - The CCA mechanism reports that the channel is busy upon detection of any energy above the ED threshold.
•ED or Car/Cor - The CCA mechanism reports that the channel is busy upon detection of a DSSS signal or any energy above the ED threshold.
Note This parameter is available only if your client adapter is using ACU version 5.02.005 or greater.
Getting Bug Information on Cisco.com
If you are a Cisco registered user, you can use the Cisco TAC Software Bug Toolkit, which consists of three tools (Bug Navigator, Bug Watcher, and Search by Bug ID Number) that help you to identify existing bugs (or caveats) in Cisco software products.
Access the TAC Software Bug Toolkit today at the following URL:
For the most up-to-date, detailed troubleshooting information, refer to the Cisco TAC website at the following URL: http://www.cisco.com/tac. Select Wireless Technologies under Top Issues.
For more information about 350 series client adapters, refer to the Cisco Aironet Wireless LAN Client Adapters Installation and Configuration Guide for Windows.
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