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Introducing AirGroup

AirGroup™ capabilities are available as a feature in Aruba WLANs where Wi-Fi data is distributed among Instant APs. AirGroup is a unique enterprise-class capability that leverages zero configuration networking to enable Bonjour® services like Apple® AirPrint and AirPlay from mobile devices in an efficient manner. Bonjour, the trade name for the zeroconf implementation introduced by Apple, is the most common example. Apple AirPlay and AirPrint services are based on the Bonjour protocol are essential services in campus Wi-Fi networks.

AirGroup solution supports both wired and wireless devices. Wired devices which support the Bonjour services are made part of the AirGroup when the VLANs of the devices are terminated on the Virtual Controller.

AirGroup also supports Aruba  ClearPass Policy Manager (CPPM).

With CPPM:

Users, such as students in dorm rooms can register their personal devices and define a group of users who are allowed to share the users’ registered devices.
Administrators can register and manage an organization's shared devices like printers and conference room Apple TVs. An administrator can grant global access to each device, or restrict access according to the username, role, or user location.


Aruba AirGroup is a technology which is made available as part of the Aruba Instant version. See Enabling or Disabling AirGroup to enable AirGroup after you have upgraded to Aruba Instant version.

What is Bonjour and Zero Configuration Networking?

Zero configuration networking enables service discovery, address assignment, and name resolution for desktop computers, mobile devices, and network services. It is designed for flat, single-subnet IP networks such as wireless networking at home. Bonjour, the trade name for the zeroconf implementation introduced by Apple, is the most common example. It is supported by most of the Apple product lines, including the Mac OS X operating system, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Apple TV and AirPort Express.

Bonjour can be installed on computers running Microsoft Windows® and is supported by most new network-capable printers. Bonjour is also included with popular software programs such as Apple iTunes, Safari, and iPhoto.

Bonjour uses multicast DNS (mDNS) to locate devices and the services that those devices offer. Since the addresses used by the protocol are link-scope multicast addresses, each query or advertisement can only be forwarded on its respective VLAN, but not across different VLANs.

WLANs and Bonjour

In large universities and enterprise networks, it is common for Bonjour-capable devices to connect to the network across VLANs. As a result, user devices such as an iPad on a specific VLAN cannot discover the Apple TV that resides on another VLAN.

Broadcast and multicast traffic are usually filtered out from a wireless LAN network to preserve the airtime and battery life. This inhibits the performance of Bonjour services as they rely on multicast traffic.

AirGroup Solution

AirGroup Features

AirGroup Architecture

The AirGroup Solution Components

Configuring AirGroup on Instant

Configuring AirGroup-CPPM Interface in Instant

AirGroup Monitoring

Troubleshooting and Log Messages