Plume SuperPods - worth connecting at all?

EnthusiastXYZ

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 26, 2020
Messages
120
I got a few Plume SuperPods (mesh system) free of charge with my latest purchase, but I am not sure I should even connect them because they require an app to set up, a paid subscription + constant cloud connection for all features, and I have doubts about how secure they are. Currently I use only one WiFi router my speeds are great, but the 5Ghz coverage is poor. Plume SuperPods can be put into Bridge Mode, but can they preserve security features of the existing router, such as Protected Management Frames? Does anyone know of a way to set up Plume SuperPods without the app? Directly connecting them to PC doesn't provide an accessible interface.
 

SamirD

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Mar 22, 2015
Messages
4,196
Even in bridge mode they require an app? (I hate all this app crap when it comes to networking. :rolleyes:)
 

EnthusiastXYZ

Weaksauce
Joined
Jun 26, 2020
Messages
120
https://support.plume.com/hc/en-us/articles/360005362793-How-secure-is-the-Plume-service-

There are 4 main measures taken to keep the data safe and reduce vulnerability to DDOS attacks.

Access to the pods​

Local access to the pods is completely shut down to prevent access, except from the cloud. SSH, Telnet, HTTP/S and other entry ports are disabled for all shipped products. This prevents hackers from trying to gain access to the device and exploit it for attacks. Botnet DDOS is mainly due to IoT vendors not locking down local access to the device. Access to the device was gained through a local login with a known default password.

Encrypted Transmission to Cloud​

Data sent from the pod to the cloud is encrypted via TLS. Each pod has a unique TLS connection with the cloud to prevent access in route.

Access to Data in the Cloud​

The cloud database is separated from the customer facing API server with a VPN connection, making it more difficult for anyone to access the data. The database is kept in the same Amazon cloud environment, not a 3rd party location, so access to the data is only permitted via VPN.

Reliability in failover​

Our API and pod control server is located in Amazon, which is largely protected from DDOS attacks. Of course, they can still happen. We saw this last year when several national websites were down for a while. While operating in Router Mode, if the pods lose connection to the cloud, they will operate in their last known state. The Wi-Fi will operate normally, but it will not have the ability to adapt to changes. New devices can join, traffic will flow normally, etc. But if a new Pod is plugged in it must wait for the cloud to initialize it to join the network. If operating in bridge mode and the outage lasts longer than ten minutes, Wi-Fi connectivity will be lost until the pods can reconnect to the cloud.

Plume's justification for disabling local access is mind-blowing. It implies that common TLS encryption over the internet is safer than local-only Ethernet access.
 
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harvestor

Limp Gawd
Joined
Apr 21, 2009
Messages
141
My experience with them on the XI system has been less then stellar, spotty connectivity and devices never seem to connect to the proper pod
 

Zangmonkey

2[H]4U
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
3,968
I use plume and have had a great experience. I was grandfathered into a lifetime subscription but even if you pay for a sub the hardware is a subsidized which makes them quite affordable for an expandable mesh system.

I think that if you're a power user and you have wired backhaul at all APs then this is probably not a system for you.... But for a "set it and forget it" user or a techie who likes the power tools it's pretty slick.

The app makes it easy to add pods, or to check on network usage, devices, motion detection, network settings from your app anywhere in the world.

I'm actually planning to change my system at home to Omada, and I'm going to put the plume system at my vacation home because I can easily admin and troubleshoot network remotely.
 
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