Business Central Wireless Manager FAQs
What is the difference between Business Central™ and Wireless Manager?
Business Central is the NETGEAR® secure, cloud based IT service platform designed to provide small to mid-sized organizations with an affordable way to establish, provision and manage key IT networking services. Wireless Manager is a component of Business Central that allows customers to manage their entire WiFi network across multiple borders, cities, buildings and floors – anyplace, anytime.
What is the 90 days free trial period for the Wireless Manager?
Every new account receives a free 90 day trial of the full service. For users interested in trying the cloud platform, simply purchase a cloud-capable NETGEAR ProSAFE® Access Point and sign up for an account on Business Central at wireless.netgear.com. Once an account is setup, a user has 90 days to access the Business Central account. Users can manage the AP, explore the interface, change configurations, access monitoring statistics, etc. At the end of 90 days, a user’s account is locked out. To regain access to the account, a user needs to purchase any of 6 available subscription licensing options.
If a license is not renewed, what happens at expiry?
Access Points continue to be active, but cannot be configured or managed from the Cloud, until a new license is added. Functionality such as Captive Portal management will be disengaged.
How do I know when licenses will expire?
Remaining license tokens and an expiry date is available inside every account. Business Central servers automatically send 30 day notice reminders in the last remaining month and a further 15 day grace period post expiry.
Does Business Central Wireless Manager support 802.1x RADIUS Authentication?
Yes. Business Central cloud managed AP’s support authentication via RADIUS. During the 802.1X authentication process, the AP acts as the Authenticator (i.e., RADIUS client) that directly interacts with the RADIUS Authentication Server. The authentication packets will be passed along between the AP and the configured RADIUS Server. The RADIUS Server can be inside the corporate firewall or on the Internet. Business Central basically configures the Radius setting on the Access Points, and the wireless client will be authenticated to the configured Radius servers. To configure the RADIUS server, the IT administrator should go to the RADIUS server profile at the location level such that all APs in that location will share the same RADIUS server settings.
Which APs will be supported by Wireless Manager?
The following ProSAFE branded business grade Access Points will be supported by Wireless Manager: WNDAP660, WNDAP360, WNDAP350, WNAP320 and WNAP210v2.
ProSAFE WNDAP620, WN370 and WND930 are NOT currently supported by Wireless Manager.
Do I need to buy special cloud versions of the APs to use Wireless Manager?
Compatible existing and new APs can be used with Business Central. Customers simply need to make sure they download cloud capable firmware for supported APs from www.netgear.com to be able to synchronize with Business Central. Post launch, newly manufacture APs in time will come with cloud firmware pre-installed
How many APs can be supported by a Business Central Wireless Manager account?
Up to 4,000 APs can be supported using a single Wireless Manager account.
Can Wireless Manager be used alongside a Wireless Controller?
Absolutely. As an example, an on-premise controller can be used to manage a single HQ site, while satellite sites benefit from the use of the Wireless Manager. However, there is no integration between the two platforms.
Is a Wireless Manager a replacement for NETGEAR Wireless Controllers?
No. A Wireless Manager is complementary to existing products and will broaden reach and appeal to end users.
If I choose to move to a hardware-based Wireless Controller in the future, how easy is it to move APs off the Business Central Wireless Manager?
This is very easy, but obviously, this should be done outside of business hours. The user should first delete the AP off the Wireless Manager account. A factory reset will allow APs to be managed in either standalone or controller managed.
If an account admin is logged on, how long before the account is timed out as a result of inactivity for security reasons?
Will Business Central Wireless Manager be offered as a license?
Yes, you can choose from 6 license options. Choose to manage increments of 1, 10 or 50 APs across 1 year or 3 years. Licenses are sold separately from Access Points. For service duration longer than 3 years, a combination of 3 year and 1 year licenses should be used.
Will Business Central Wireless Manager be delivered as a download from the Internet?
No. The actual application (Business Central) is a Software as a Service platform hosted using Amazon Web Services. Users do not need to download any software, and will access the management platform application from a secure browser, located from anywhere in the world.
Would Business Central be sold as a service or a product SKU?
Business Central will be sold as a product SKU. VAR’s can (if they choose) sell licenses to end users, or sell WiFi as a managed service and additional services on top of the Business Central offering.
Where do I get the firmware on the AP to be cloud managed?
During the initial transition period (where there may be units in the channel and distribution from earlier shipments), the customers should go to NETGEAR support to download the latest AP standalone firmware and upload on the AP. Factory reset the AP and it will be activated with cloud enabled firmware.
After the transition period, all cloud capable Access Points will be shipped with cloud capable firmware enabled by default.
What kind of personal data will be required from the customer to use Wireless Manager?
When the user purchases the subscription (one of the 6 SKU’s mentioned above), the user simply provides an email address to a NETGEAR authorized VAR, and the VAR will provide this email address to an Authorized Distributor as part of the purchase order. The Distributor then will make the request to NETGEAR LMS system (license management system). The LMS will automatically generate the license key for the user to enter into his account. This license key will be sent to the email address that the user used to make the purchase. If the user has never signed up to an account before, they will follow through with the account signup process. The information needed for account sign up is exactly the same as what a user will provide as part of the sign up process to create a MyNetgear.com account. Business Central and MyNetgear.com use a common single-sign-on authorization process.
Where can I purchase Wireless Manager Licenses?
Licenses are available exclusively through our indirect channel. End users should contact a local authorized NETGEAR reseller who can offer advice and guidance on available options.
On purchasing a license key, when will a customer receive the license?
Our License Management System generates licenses 5 times a day. On receipt of licensing orders from distribution, license keys will be emailed to end users typically within 24 hours. Given the shipping times of the hardware, if Aps and licenses are ordered at the same time, the licenses will probably arrive first. End users or the reseller must provide an email along with their order to which the license key(s) will be sent. The email does not need to be the same as that used to sign up to a Business Central account.
Who can sign up for a Business Central Wireless Manager Account?
End users can register for an account and manage it by themselves. Alternatively, Business Central can be purchased as a managed service from authorized NETGEAR partners. Business Central accounts do not support muli-tenancy, so each individual customer will require and be given their own individual account that is solely for their own organization.
Can I add admin users to my Business Central account?
Hot spot clerks can be invited and added to your account. They cannot see any network configuration or management views, only voucher access services to allow free or fee paying access codes to be issued. In addition to Hot spot clerks, Admin and Read-Only user account types are available.
What is license co-termination and how does it work?
Co-terminations ensures you have a given single expiry date for your service, regardless of the number of APs you have deployed. Business Central automatically adjusts expiration times whenever you adjust your network through adding or removing APs, or adding additional licenses.
Can I control guest access with a pre-approved access code?
Yes, you can set up free and fee based access for given time durations of your choosing from a drop down menu. Business Central Wireless Manager does not include a billing solution, so monies will need to be debited manually with a process of your choosing, e.g. cash, debit or credit card over the counter.
Can I set up a multi-tenancy account with Business Central?
No. Resellers can however, choose to use a single account to manage multiple APs at different locations, each one potentially being a different customer. This would require clear transparency to end users to ensure reseller terms and conditions of delivering such a service implementation model are acceptable.