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When replacing an 802.11a/b/g WAP with an 802.11a/b/g/n/ac WAP (on a network with a single WAP), is there any technical reason to change the Wi-Fi SSID?

If the SSID (and password) stay the same, hosts (Android/Windows/Linux/iOS) will not create new network profiles for the new WAP; instead they will use their existing network profiles. Is this fine, or is better to create a new SSID?

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  • Did any answer help you? If so you should accept it, so that the question doesn't keep popping up.
    – user36472
    Nov 9, 2018 at 11:47

3 Answers 3

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To my knowledge, there is no technical reason to change SSID when replacing a wireless device/router or an AP.

You have to ensure that the same SSID on new wireless device/router or AP has the same settings (authentication - PSK/password, encryption ...) as it does on old wireless device/router or AP.

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I think what you are really asking is 'should the end devices forget the SSID and relearn it'?

From your post I gather you are wondering if the end devices will be able to take advantage of the improvements in hardware?

Good question...I would prob just 'forget' the SSID and relearn it.

I upgrade major systems all of the time and see end stations join as AC when the old AP was N only so prob not needed but I would still 'forget' and relearn.

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Replacing 802.11a/b/g wireless access point with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac capable access point need no change on SSID field at least for technical reason. However, after doing update without changing SSID you probably see two type of effect on user (STA) end. User(s) without having new n/ac capacity will keep connecting old way as if there is nothing changed. But for user who previously had n/ac capability but forced to use a/b/g for limitation on access point capability will create new profile by their network management software. Most of user will need no interaction with their device but as others already said, some Unix/Linux system could define fixed protocol to use for connection every time. That's optional, not requirement.

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    I believe you are misunderstanding the OP's post. WAP = wireless access point. So the OP isn't asking about WEP/WPA/WPA2 in any way.
    – YLearn
    Nov 2, 2018 at 5:27
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    Sorry, My bad:( Just read the OP again carefully and found my mistake about WAP/WEP/WPA. Editing answer. Thanks @YLearn
    – A. Bauani
    Nov 9, 2018 at 3:12

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