Changing IP of HA WLC controller.

Today I did change IP of one of our HA Wireless Controllers. Since the company I work for got bought last year we have to change IP of our systems to fit into our new and bigger network.

Changing the IP address isn’t a big thing and you can do it without any downtime on the AP’s if you run flexconnect. If you run in local mode you will be looking at a short downtime. If you want to do it with the minimal of downtime you need a third controller that can host your AP’s while the HA cluster is down.

If you have a third controller that can host your AP’s you have to make sure that the mobility groups are configured and working to your HA. You can check this in the following menu: Controller -> Mobility Management -> Mobility Groups. In this menu all your mobility groups are listed. If the mobility group towards the controller is Up you should see it on the right side of the page. You also have to check this on the HA controller.

If the mobility group is up and running then the next thing is to change primary controller for the AP’s. This is a very easy task but it’s time consuming if you don’t have Cisco Prime ( I got that luckily). From Cisco Prime you can just send out a template to all the AP’s and make them move to another primary controller. If you want to do it manually you can do it to. Then you have to first open an AP and choose High Availability. Then you configure the third controller as Primary. Within the next few minutes all the AP’s should be moved to a new controller.

When there is no connected AP’s left we can start the work to re-IP the HA controller. The first thing we have to do is to break the HA cluster. We are not able to change the IP without breaking the cluster. When breaking the cluster there will also be a restart, so if you don’t have another controller for your AP’s, be ready for some downtime!

To disable the cluster you go to  Controller -> Redundancy -> Global Configuration. In the lower part of the page you have the option to Disable or Enable the cluster. Set the drop down to Disabled and press Apply in the top right corner. The controller will then ask you if you are sure about breaking the cluster and that the controller will restart. Accept this and wait for a few minutes.

The WLC will after a few minutes boot up again on the same IP address as before. Then you should go to the Interface menu to change the management IP address.

Change the IP Address, Netmask and Gateway to the new values and press Apply. You will now loose connection and need to connect on the new IP’s It’s very important to enter the correct IP’s so you don’t loose contact (or you could use the integrated service port if you have a 550x).

The next interface you need to change is the redundancy management IP address. This IP should be in the same subnet as the management IP. So unless you change the IP to something in the same subnet as your previous IP you need to change this IP also. This IP also needs to match the Redundancy mgmt IP in Controller -> Redundancy -> Global Configuration.

The last thing you need to do o this controller is go back to Controller -> Redundancy -> Global Configuration and change the IP’s for the Redundancy mgmt IPs and enable the cluster again.

You should now be finished With the first Controller. The IP for the WLC HA is now active and if you want to move the AP’s to the New Controller you can do that now. You shoudl be able to Connect to the remaining Controller on the old management IP address. You should repeat the steps for changing the Redundancy mgmt IP and Redundancy port IP. When this is done you only need to enable the cluster on this Controller also and the HA should be working again as before.

When you have enable HA on the second Controller you can go to Monitor -> Redundancy -> Summary. There you will be able to see if the HA cluster is running successfully again.

Your cluster should now be working correctly. If you got questions or feedback please leave a comment!


Configuring a VPN tunnel from a VRF

In the company where I work we deliver some of our product using boats. Since most of our customers are in remote locations we use a supplier that have good coverage in those locations. The issue then becomes that the same supplier has a high cost on the bandwidth and they don’t have a good coverage in the areas where our factories are. To reduce cost and ensure good coverage close to our factories we have a wireless network that the boats connect to when they arrive. I have added a picture with a simple diagram showing the solution.
Boat network

At the moment we have Juniper SSG550M in a central location as our VPN hub. We have just recently started to buy Cisco routers instead of Juniper firewalls for the boats. So I had to configure the Cisco routers so they would automatically switch between the 2 connections and always try to choose our wireless connection first (the connection close to our factories).

I did this with the help of BGP and gave the expensive connection more AS path compared to our wireless connection at the factories. The VPN is a VTI/Routing based tunnel.

I will first start with the configuration of the Cisco router. In the first section here I am configuring the settings of the VPN tunnel:

crypto isakmp policy 10
encr aes 256
authentication pre-share
group 14
lifetime 3600
crypto isakmp invalid-spi-recovery
crypto isakmp keepalive 10
crypto ipsec transform-set aes256-sha esp-aes 256 esp-sha-hmac
mode tunnel
crypto ipsec profile boat-vpn
set transform-set aes256-sha
set pfs group14

With all the options set I can build the tunnel itself. The first tunnel is the one wireless in the factories. I have put the connection into a separate vrf to avoid conflicts between the two connections. I also want all the internet traffic to go over the “expensive connection”. Since the boats visit different factories I only have a dynamic IP at the boats. Every time they arrive at a factory they will receive a new IP, so the tunnel is configured with aggressive mode and identified by the fqdn name. Also remember to use another password than supersecret 🙂

ip vrf factorywireless
crypto isakmp peer address vrf factorywireless
set aggressive-mode password supersecret
set aggressive-mode client-endpoint fqdn

For the second and primary connection I will use the default router instance. This is the connection that will have coverage most of the time and is where the internet traffic will be running . This connection is also using aggressive mode.

crypto isakmp peer address
set aggressive-mode password supersecret
set aggressive-mode client-endpoint fqdn

The interfaces for the tunnel are configured pretty straight forward as a normal VTI interfaces. The only difference is that the tunnel that connects from the factorywireless vrf has a line about that.

interface Tunnel1
description Tunnel over ICE
ip address
tunnel source FastEthernet4
tunnel mode ipsec ipv4
tunnel destination
tunnel protection ipsec profile boat-vpn
interface Tunnel105
description Tunnel over Wireless at factories
ip address
tunnel source Vlan110
tunnel mode ipsec ipv4
tunnel vrf factorywireless
tunnel destination
tunnel protection ipsec profile boat-vpn

The last thing we need to do on the Cisco router is to configure the BGP. This is to make sure the traffic is routed on the correct path. You can see that I have added route map prepend-internet  where I have configured 4 extra prepends to the AS path. I only configure the AS path on an outgoing basis so you will see the same amount of prepends on the Netscreen. The prepend is only configured on the traffic going over the expensive internet connection.

router bgp 64501
bgp log-neighbor-changes
network mask
neighbor remote-as 64590
neighbor route-map prepend-internet out
neighbor remote-as 64500
route-map prepend-internet permit 10
 set as-path prepend 64501 64501 64501 64501



That completes the configuration of the Cisco router. We will now start on the configuration on the SSG550M. I will start with the configuration of the VPN proposal. It’s important that these match the Cisco device that we tested with before.

 set ike p1-proposal "vpn-boats-phase1" preshare group14 esp aes256 sha-1 second 3600
 set ike p2-proposal vpn-boats-phase-2 group14 esp aes256 sha-1 second 3600 

Then we will create the connection for the VPN tunnels. We will start on the factory wireless connection. Since we never know what IP address the tunnel is coming from this will be an aggressive tunnel. Remember to type the fqdn name for the connection correct in the first line and choose the correct interface. The interface that you bind the connection to is also important to remember since you will create it in the next section.

set ike gateway "vpn-boats-fb4" address id "" Aggr outgoing-interface "redundant1" preshare "supersecret" proposal "vpn-boats-phase1"
 set vpn vpn-boats gateway vpn-boats replay proposal vpn-boats-phase-2 
 set vpn vpn-boats bind interface tunnel.1
 set vpn vpn-boats monitor optimized rekey

The second connection is almost the same but it contains NAT traversal and is using another incoming interface. The NAT traversal is enabled since I don’t get a public IP on the boat towards the internet.

 set ike gateway "vpn-boats-cellular" address id "" Aggr outgoing-interface "redundant2" preshare "supersecret" proposal "vpn-boats-phase1"
 set ike gateway vpn-boats-cellular nat-traversal
 set vpn vpn-boats-cellular gateway vpn-boats-cellular replay proposal vpn-boats-phase-2 
 set vpn vpn-boats-cellular bind interface tunnel.2
 set vpn vpn-boats-cellular monitor optimized rekey
 unset vpn vpn-boats-cellular dscp-mark 

The last thing needed before getting the connection up on the VPN tunnel is creating the tunnel interfaces.Remember to choose the address that you are peering with on the BGP and the tunnel number you did bind in the previous section

 set interface tunnel.1 zone vpn-boats
 set interface tunnel.1 ip
set interface tunnel.1 protocol bgp
set interface tunnel.1 protocol ping
 set interface tunnel.2 zone vpn-boats
set interface tunnel.2 ip
set interface tunnel.2 protocol bgp
set interface tunnel.2 protocol ping

Now your tunnel should be UP and running and you can do a ping test to verify the connection between them. We will now start on the final part that is the BGP configuration. I am expecting that the BGP config on the device itself is done when writing this so I wont include all the BGP configuration. Only the important part 🙂

I’m beginning with creating the route-map to prepend the traffic over the VPN. The route map will be named internet-prepend. The AS number on the local router is 64500.

set vrouter trust-vr
 set route-map name internet-prepend permit 1
 set match ip 20 10
 set as-path 12
set protocol bgp 64500
 set as-path-access-list 12 permit "64500 64500"

Then I will start configuring the neighbor connections. The first will be the BGP going over the internet and is having the prepend enabled. The rest of the configuration is straight forward.

set neighbor remote-as 64501 local-ip
set neighbor activate
set neighbor force-reconnect
set neighbor nhself-enable
set neighbor reject-default-route
set neighbor enable
set neighbor route-map internet-prepend out

Then it’s the last BGP connection. It’s almost the same as the previous one except for the prepend.

set neighbor remote-as 64501 local-ip
set neighbor activate
set neighbor force-reconnect
set neighbor nhself-enable
set neighbor reject-default-route
set neighbor enable

That is all. If you have any questions or comments you can leave one in the comments section below.

Let people without Dropbox upload files

Let people without Dropbox upload files to you

Go to and log in. Then you click on «File requests»

Press «Request files»

Enter a description for the request. This will show on the upload page. Then you press «Change folder» so the files are uploaded to the correct folder. The folder name and location will not be shown to the person uploading the files.

Browse to the correct folder and mark the folder you want the files to be stored in.

You can now see that the folder name is changed. Pres “Next to continue”

In the next page you will get the link that you can send to the person that needs to upload files to you. There is also a function where you can let Dropbox send the link for you.
After this you are done. Now you just have to wait for the files to be uploaded.

The following is what needs to be done by the uploader

The person uploading the files will get an e-mail like this. He should press «Upload files» to upload the files to your Dropbox.

When the «Upload files» is pressed an internet browser should open and you should see the following image. Press «Choose files» to continue.

Then you will have the possibility to upload one or more files for uploading. To select more than one file keep Control (CTRL) pressed while selecting files.

The uploader should now see a list over files that is ready for upload. He can also press «Add another file» to add more files to the same upload. He can also enter his name and e-mail address so that it’s possible to see who uploads what. The files are uploaded when pressing “Upload”

When that is completed the upload is finished and the files are in the Dropbox.0002