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Ok, one thing I want to touch on right away. I’m reading through my old post about UniFi and wanted to touch on a few items related to that. Obviously a lot has changed in the past seven years and this probably warrants a more in-depth post but for now I’ll throw out some quick bullet points. It’s probably worth noting that I have worked with UniFi extensively since my last post in February 2013 – in fact the computer I am typing this on is connected via a UniFi Switch 8 and I have multiple APs at home, as well as our setup at work and many client sites with one or more APs.

Key differences:

  • Most APs now support standard 802.3 PoE. There are a handful of older APs that only support Ubiqiti’s passive 24V PoE and a handful of other devices that support both but have limits on their support in one direction or another. There are also quite a few newer devices that do not support the old passive standard. Thankfully there is a handy support matrix ( https://help.ubnt.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000263008-UniFi-Supported-PoE-Protocols ).
  • The management stack has come a LONG way. It absolutely does run on Linux now (as well as Windows and macOS) and there are all kinds of places to run it other than a premise machine. My personal preferred approach is a tiny Linux VM (I use a Debian 9 VM with 2GB RAM, 1 CPU core and 30GB disk at home – and I’m sure it could be made smaller) but I’m interested in playing around with the various Docker images that are out there. Ubiqiti also offers their CloudKey management appliances (which are okay but pretty expensive for what you get), and it’s easy to run in the public cloud if need be.
  • Ubiqiti now offers a cloud management interface (which plugs into the local controller, wherever it happens to run). I don’t have a ton of experience with it, but it’s certainly handy.
  • Greatly expanded product line – in additon to many APs, there are switches, camera gear, lighting, firewalls, etc. There’s also a ton of non-UniFi gear in their product line. How good that gear is in absolute terms varies a bit but the value for money is typically hard to beat.

Again this is probably something I could write several posts about but for now I wanted to throw out some commentary to update my post from 2013.

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