Network Upgrades

Not that our network needed any updating, we’ve been running the Ubiquiti Cloud Key Gen2 and USG Pro gateway and it’s been solid. But I like to keep up to date with the latest and greatest products and while the newer Dream Machine line of products has been out for a couple of years I figured it’s had some time to work the initial bugs out. I picked up the Dream Machine Pro Special Edition, which replaces the cloud key and gateway, and decided to give it a go.

Ubiquiti’s promise of an easy migration proved to be true, to my surprise. I backed up the settings on the old system before decommissioning, and imported the file into the new system. After import and re-adoption of the devices, things were up and running with very little input from me. VLAN’s, firewall rules, etc. – all migrated and running. I was surprised at how quick things went.

The UDM Pro SE has a nifty feature that utilizes an app on a smartphone in concert with the UDM Pro to realtime map the floor-plan of your location and overlay the map with wifi signal strength gradients. Once the network was back up and online, I started to do the walk around to map out the house:

This is a screenshot of the app, the map is the floor-plan of the upstairs of our house. (I have an iPhone 14 Pro Max.) The worst coverage on this is the master bedroom, right in the center of the bed. As I’m typing this, I’m sitting there now, and the signal is solid – to give some context to the strength relativity. The upstairs AP is on the wall right above my desk, where the icon of me standing is in the screenshot.

One unanticipated side effect of real time mapping a floor-plan is how the the software handles mirrors. This app essentially doubled the room size when it scanned the mirror, and it posed an interesting problem to me of how one could handle that.

Ubiquiti also rolled out an augmented reality feature with their new line of products, but unfortunately I needed to have upgraded my switch to support it. I have no need whatsoever to upgrade, but I’m thinking about it just for this feature alone. Here’s an example of what it can do, show an overlay of the ports and what devices are plugged into them: