Review: 5 Things We Love About The Linksys Cloud Manager


Linksys says that it spent two years and millions of dollars in the development effort for its new cloud-hosted Wi-Fi management platform, the Linksys Cloud Manager.

And it shows.

The platform was purpose-built for managed service providers that serve small businesses, and our review in the CRN Test Center found a number of thoughtful features that MSPs should appreciate.

[Related: Linksys Cloud Manager Aims To Disrupt MSP Networking Market]

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What follows are five key things we've enjoyed about the Linksys Cloud Manager.


The promise of the Linksys Cloud Manager is that MSPs can manage multiple client networks from a single dashboard, with a solution that isn't over-engineered. The platform has the key features that are needed to serve SMBs—specifically, businesses that have 100 seats or less. But the platform leaves out the sorts of enterprise-class features that SMBs don't actually depend upon (such as the ability to interface with a Bluetooth radio for asset tracking). That thoughtfulness around what to include and what to leave out allows for a simplified product that is ideal for serving the SMB market.


We began trying out the Linksys Cloud Manager by setting up a Linksys access point, the LAPAC1750. The process was ultra-fast and easy; we were able to quickly create a network, add an access point, and configure the access point with a name and password. The process took about three minutes from start to finish. This setup process is meant for MSPs, obviously, but it's clear that this is a great example of a company that is bringing consumerization to the IT world.


Once you've created your network and added access points, you'll next turn to the dashboard for analyzing and managing the network. And once again, this process has been immensely simplified for serving SMBs. The user interface is easy to navigate with featured data such as network stats, top clients by usage and top access points by usage. Other available analytics include uptime, signal strength and connection duration. It should also be mentioned that the user interface is responsive for use on mobile devices, enabling on-the-go management of networks by MSPs.

Global Map

The dashboard also offers some cool functionality in the form of a map showing where all access points are connected globally. Helpfully, the map gives visual cues about trouble spots by showing access points in red when they're experiencing issues (green means everything is OK). Time-starved solution providers should appreciate this quick way of seeing what's happening on a given network.

No Subscription Fees

Beyond the platform itself, we also need to mention one of the biggest stand-out features of the Linksys Cloud Manager: There are no subscription fees attached. Competing products, meanwhile, can charge $100 or more per year. Specifically, the Linksys Cloud Manager can be used with each access point for up to five years without fees. That pricing, combined with a set of simplified but powerful features, ultimately makes the Linksys Cloud Manager a compelling option for MSPs and resellers that are looking to make money on services.