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Time: August 10th, 2023

We have discussed a very common question of what is AP isolation in this blog post and how it works in the real world. Read till the end to learn this technology in wireless networks. 



A lot of us have gotten used to the idea of Wi-Fi, but it's still a relatively new technology. As a result, there are some things that we just don't know about how it works or how we can get the most out of it. That's why we're here! Today we're going to talk about AP isolation and why it matters.


What is AP isolation?

AP isolation is a feature that prevents your wireless devices from connecting to other networks. It can protect your network from other wireless networks and also protect it from infected devices. It is enabled by default on all Aruba controllers running version 7x or higher, but if you want to disable this feature, see our article on how do I disable AP isolation. This tech prevents devices on your network from communicating with each other. This can be important because it can prevent devices from being hacked or infected by malware, but also has some more practical uses:


  • You won't accidentally share files with others on your network.
  • If someone tries to access your computer remotely (via remote desktop), they won't be able to see any other computers on the same network as yours because of AP isolation.


How does it work?

So, the question “what is AP isolation” is explained, and now let’s dive into how it actually works. The router will isolate the access point from the rest of the network. The router is used to create a virtual firewall around your home Wi-Fi network so that devices connected to the access point cannot communicate with other devices on your local network (e.g., computers and printers). This isolation means that if someone is using an infected device, they won't be able to send malware or viruses over to any other computers within the range that are connected through this same router. You can configure the device through the router's web interface, or you can do it through its mobile app, or even through its settings page or panel.


AP isolation is also known as wireless network segmentation and it allows you to separate networks by using different channels or frequencies (the part of the spectrum where wireless signals travel). This prevents devices on one network from communicating with each other or with another device on another network, even if they're connected via Wi-Fi.


Because router manufacturers want their products to be usable by both home and small business users, you will find AP Isolation on almost all routers. AP Isolation is a rather crucial feature to enable in a small business setup, especially when configuring a wireless hotspot for public use. Blocking connections between computers on the network, adds an extra layer of security for hotspot users. Each computer in the network is isolated from the others in this way, thus the name AP Isolation. 


If there are frequent visitors to the wireless network and no intra-home networking going on, AP Isolation on a home router is only necessary. For instance, it is advised to turn off AP Isolation if a NAS (Network Attached Storage) device is connected to the network because, if it is on, it will prevent the NAS device from communicating with any other devices on the network, negating the advantages of using a NAS device. When it comes to security in a network, no one comes near to RG-AP820-I Ruijie AX3000 Wi-Fi 6 Indoor AP from Ruijie Networks thanks to its plethora of security features like Support of PSK and Web authentication, 802.1X authentication, PEAP authentication, data frame filtering, user isolation and much more. 



Hopefully, this article has helped you understand the question of what is AP isolation and why it matters. The primary reason that AP Isolation is a feature for hotspots and guest networks is that by preventing connections between computers, additional security will be added on top of the software firewall that is already installed on a user's computer. Anyone could connect to a public hotspot with AP Isolation disabled and start taking action to view or take over another computer on the network. This is avoided by AP isolation, which assures each network user that they are secure and safe.

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