cisco live

CTS 113: The Wizarding World of Cisco Live 2018

Robert Boardman, of WiFi of Everything, joins the show to tell us his thoughts on the upcoming Cisco Live conference during the summer of 2018.

CTS 113

Figus making an appearance at Cisco Live

Cisco Live 2018: What To Expect

Cisco Live 2018 will be from June 10 – 14, 2018 in Orlando Florida. Robert and I are both Cisco Champions. We decided to get together and record two shows at the same time. This CTS episode will also air as a video for the WiFi of Everything Show.

This is our first time attending Cisco Live in Orlando. One of the most visible parts of this conference is the Customer Appreciation Event. Let’s just get that out of the way. This year, Cisco is having the biggest party ever. All attendees will have Universal Studios all to themselves! There are multiple musical performers lined up and Cisco Live attendees will have the chance to have unlimited rides at the park. In addition to that, there will be food and drinks available. We’re looking forward to that.

Okay, now for the serious stuff. Have you seen the sessions that will be at Cisco Live? Being this is a Wi-Fi focused show, we have highlighted just a few:

Anatomy of real-time wireless analytics and troubleshooting using DNA Assurance/AIRsense

I’d like to see how far DNA Assurance has come along after first seeing it last year at Cisco Live 2017. Unfortunately, I haven’t ran into anyone who has it implemented. Hopefully there are some real use cases this time.

Cisco Next-Gen Enterprise Wireless Architecture

This could mean one thing right? 802.11ax? Maybe or maybe not? Will there be a new access point announced? New controllers? One can assume.

Securely Designing Your Wireless LAN for Threat Mitigation, Policy and BYOD

Security. Often forgotten and implemented after the fact. With wireless being a main point of connection, it’s important to keep it secure.

Optimize your WLANs for iPhones and iPads

We run networks predominantly used by iOS devices. So it only makes sense to optimize it for them and plus we’d like to know what else is coming out of the Cisco + Apple partnership.


Getting involved in the wireless community is one of the primary reasons we’re attending. We love meeting new people, learning about what they do, and making new friends. This year is no different from the last.

What’s new? We will be recording WiFi of Everything videos! Stay tuned for what’s to come. There will also be CTS episodes recorded. As we get closer to the conference we will announce days and times.

Look out for Figus! He’s the guy you see in the image above. He’ll be better than last year and ready for social interactions!

Links and Resources

CTS 085: Cisco Advanced Services Team at CLUS

This is a recording from Cisco Live 2017 in the Podcast Domain. We had a few Cisco Advanced Services members join the podcast to discuss various topics about wireless.

This episode is sponsored by Metageek.

Sponsored by Metageek

Podcast Domain at Cisco Live 2017

Clear To Send with Cisco Advanced Services at Cisco Live 2017

We were fortunate to have a dedicated podcast space at Cisco Live 2017 called Podcast Domain. Many thanks to Lauren for setting this up and scheduling Cisco engineers to speak with us. I am joined by a special co-host, Drew Lentz, who is a wireless professional and man who runs many businesses 😉

Those joining us from Cisco Advanced Services are:

Eric Holderson – Does wireless and scripting. He has been with Cisco for 10 years now and started in the BU. He has done some Assurewave testing, has been in the escalation team, and now into services.

Matt Swartz – 14 years at Cisco and has always been in Advanced Services. He is also Captain Wired! Started in routing and switching then moved into wireless.

Jake Fussell – Has been at Cisco for 12 years, first 5 years spent in TAC for wireless. Then moved into TAC escalation before being recruited into services.

Josh Suhr – Worked at a Cisco Partner before making the move to Cisco. Kind of a Swiss Army Knife and can work on routing, security, wireless, etc. Started in services 6 years ago.

In this episode, it runs more like a roundtable. We don’t have any one specific topic we focus on. We primarily get to know members of the advanced services team, get their perspective on how they do wireless and where they see it going from Cisco’s point of view. It is especially interesting since Cisco announced new products and a new direction this year with Cisco DNA, SD-Access, etc. A lot of things focused on machine learning and analytics, which we dive into a bit.

This group does a lot of stadium deployments for the MLB which have been described as an excellent partner. They utilize a lot of Cisco technology to reach out to their fans.

This initial conversation gets us talking about machine learning and analytics right away. You may want to look at BRKEWN-2033 with JP Vasseur on Cloud Machine Learning and Analytics for DNA.

Other topics we discuss:

  • What skills are required to deploy wireless beyond the fundamentals and basics. RF is a given, but what about the solutions we need to provide.
  • Getting into wireless
  • How is this different from Mist (Beaconpoint)
  • Client sensors
  • Cisco Engage
  • Cisco CMX
  • Hyperlocation vs Beaconpoint – how do you decide?
  • Use cases for Hyperlocation
  • CWNP


CTS 078: Cisco Live 2017 – Get Ready

Cisco Live 2017 is coming up and there’s much to see. Clear To Send will be there to do a live recording. We will also be giving away Clear To Send stickers at Cisco Live if you can find us!

The conference floor of Cisco Live.

Upcoming Cisco Live 2017

The Mandalay Bay will be hosting Cisco Live 2017 again in Las Vegas. The event begins on June 25th, 2017 through June 29th. I, Rowell Dionicio, will be in attendance from Clear To Send podcast. This is the second year in a row as an attendee for me. Learn more about last year’s experience from Episode 44.

First Time Attendee?

I highly recommend picking a hotel close to conference. If you can, get into Mandalay Bay or Delano. This year I will be staying at the Luxor which is next door. Other hotels may seem like an easy walk but trust me, in the heat you don’t want to be walking. Luckily, there will be a constant stream of shuttles to various hotels.

Prepare an extra bag just for the swag. You’ll get a ton of it. I’ve heard of some bringing an extra carry-on just for the swag. Lots of cool toys, tshirts, and of course marketing literature.

Wear comfortable shoes because you’re going to be doing a lot of walking. The Mandalay Bay conference center is very large. There’s also walking along Las Vegas if you’re up for it. That also means wearing comfortable clothes. When I attended Las Vegas 2016 it was a nice cool 110F. Wear light, breathable clothing. Within the conference center it will get very cold. It’s best to layer your clothing for Cisco Live.

A trailer sits within Cisco Live. Customized for the conference.

Cisco Live Sessions

I’ll be attending mostly wireless sessions but will add in a few new technologies to keep myself up-to-date with what’s out there. My favorite speakers are Jerome Henry, Matt Swartz, and Jim Florick. Any topic from those individuals will be knowledge bombs.

Check out all the sessions from the Cisco’s website.

Here are a few interesting sessions to check out:

  • CCNA Wireless, master the 802.11 protocols! By Jerome Henry (Tue 27th 8am 2h)
  • Improve Enterprise WLAN Spectrum Quality with Cisco’s advanced RF capacities (RRM, CleanAir, ClientLink, etc) by Jim Florick (Wed 28th 8am 2h)
  • Apple and Cisco: Fast-Tracking the Mobile Enterprise (Monday 26th 8am 1h)
  • Be my guest! – Design and Deploy Wireless Guest Access that Works by Federico Ziliotto (Monday 26th 4pm 1.5h)
  • High Density Wi-Fi Design, Deployment, and Optimization by Josh Suhr and Matt Swartz (Wed 8am 2h)
  • Advanced Enterprise WLAN Deployment (full day seminar)
  • Design and Deployment of Outdoor Wireless Networks by Kshitij Mahant (Thurs 29th 1pm 1.5h)
  • 7 Ways to Fail as a Wireless Expert by Steven Heinsius (Ekahau Webinar)
  • CCIE Wireless Techtorial by Carlos Alcantara and Santiago Lopez (Wed 28th 1pm to 5pm)
  • CCNP Wireless – Candidate’s Choice (Mon 26th 8am 2h)
  • Connected Mobile Experience (CMX) by Darryl Sladden (Thur 29th 8:30am 1.5h)
  • 5G Radio Access Network Transformation (Cellular Networks)
  • 5G Technology Updates (Cellular Network)
  • Cisco IOT in a 5G World
  • Deploying 4G/LTE for Enterprise and IoT Solutions

Meet The Engineer

Any attendee can schedule in a Meet the Engineer and I highly recommend it. Last year’s Cisco Live I was able to sit down with Matt Swartz and Jim Florick to talk RRM. It was a valuable discussion which gave me a few action items in the end. When you can talk directly with the engineers about any topic at hand you come out much smarter.

Certification Exam

Once you’re registered for Cisco Live you’ll want to schedule your free exam. Try to get this out of the way as soon as possible. I land on Saturday afternoon and I scheduled my exam for Sunday. Seats fill up fast and the earlier you can get this done the better. As soon as you get into sessions your brain will be overloaded with so much information that sometimes it can be difficult to focus on an exam.

Customer Appreciation Event

This year Bruno Mars headlines at the T-Mobile Arena. I love the upbeat music from Bruno Mars so this will surely be an entertaining event.

Live Podcast Recording

We can’t do Cisco Live without doing a live recording of Clear To Send! The details are still being put together but once we have things finalized I will release more information on when, where, and how to get there. If you can, please join us for a recording and become part of the show!

Prepare To Chow Down

Join me as I get food at some of my favorite restaurants. I’ll be stopping by the following:

  • Tacos El Gordo
  • Secret Pizza Parlor
  • Lotus of Siam


The best part of going to Cisco Live is networking with your peers. We often communicate virtually on social networks so this is a great time to get face to face. Meet the people behind the avatar and you’ll be surprised with much fun you can have just by meeting your social counterpart.

I’m looking forward to another Cisco Live. Keep up with what’s happening during the event from my Twitter account: @rowelldionicio

CTS 059: Become A Better Wi-Fi Engineer in 2017

Becoming a better Wi-Fi engineer with this list of resources. Even if you are just getting started in Wi-Fi, you should check out each resource.

Happy New Year! We made it to 2017! I am so glad we are done with 2016.

I spent a lot of time in 2016 studying for the CWNP exams working my way up to CWNE. But in 2017, I’d like to focus on becoming a better Wi-Fi engineer.

What does that mean? I’m talking about really learning how Wi-Fi works. Understanding the technical details of creating a good experience for the end users. In addition, we have to apply what we learn in the field. Whether that is improving your home Wi-Fi, installing Wi-Fi for a church, for your office, or doing high density Wi-Fi.

So in this episode, I want to outline a lot of resources that are available to help us become better Wi-Fi engineers.

Wi-Fi Resources

  • Wireshark
    • Start capturing frames
    • Airtool is a good application for macOS
    • Use this tool from Riverbed for Windows
  • Vendor-specific
    • CCNA Wireless
    • CCNP Wireless
    • Aruba has some good docs
    • Read Cisco configuration guides
  • Get out there and volunteer your services
    • Install Wi-Fi for someone in need, such as your local church
  • Get ahold of some Cisco APs and install the virtual controller trial
  • Do as much work as possible, try to work out the issues and if you need further clarification or guidance, reach out to the community.
  • Find ways to do true validation testing with end users and their devices.
  • Secure networks with 802.1X, I know easier said than done.

CTS 045: Wrap Up of Cisco Live 2016

Wow what a conference. Cisco Live 2016 met my expectations and more. With over 28,000 attendees we filled Las Vegas throughout the strip. At the Cisco Live, we collectively used about 40 TB of traffic! Impressive numbers. I have to give props to those who help set up the conference, especially WiFi. There were times it was slow but it worked very well for me for the rest of the conference.

With so many sessions available for us to wrap our heads around, there were a few that stuck out the most. In this episode, I provide some of my notes from the following sessions:

  • BRKEWN-2000 – Design and Deployment of Wireless LANs for Real Time Applications
  • BRKEWN-2017 – Understanding RF Fundamentals and the Radio Design of 802.11n/ac Networks
  • BRKEWN-2019 – 7 Ways To Fail As A Wireless Expert
  • BRKEWN-3000 – Analyzing and Fixing Wi-Fi Issues with Cisco WLC tools and Packet Capture Analysis
  • BRKEWN-3011 – Advanced Troubleshooting of Wireless LANs

One of my favorite sessions was the Meet the Engineer with Matt Swartz and surprisingly, Jim Florwick. To have some of Cisco’s finest WiFi experts was a great honor. The knowledge bombs they dropped were gold. Thank you to both for meeting with me.

And of course, the community. It was great to see my friend Robert Boardman again. Someone give him an alarm clock! It was great meeting Mitch Dickey, Brennan, Scott McDermitt, and Jerry Olla in person.

Till next year!