Chromecast is an interesting product even for businesses, especially it’s screen casting function (although still listed as experimental) can be utilized to present your PC to an external monitor – reducing the need for the right cables or adapters in between.
In an enterprise environment, however, it can prove difficult to connect a device like the Chromecast to WiFi networks that require features like dot1x authentication. This was the case in my company and searching for answers led me to a deployment guide from Cisco, the vendor we use our wireless solution. Although relevant it did not completely solve my issue, so if you are struggling with the same problem just keep on reading.
The deployment guide from Cisco focuses heavily on multicast, both within a single network and between wireless networks. In my case connecting the Chromecast to the same network as the company users was not possible, but the answer was far simpler than the suggested solution from Cisco. In the end it is all a question of mDNS (multicast DNS) being properly set up to announce your Chromecast’s service.
First, according to Cisco’s guide, enable global multicast:
Controller -> Multicast -> Enable Global Multicast mode
From here on, the rest is easily set up as follows:
Controller -> mDNS -> General -> Enable mDNS Global Snooping
Controller -> mDNS -> General -> Add new service to Master Services Database (_googlecast._tcp.local)
Controller -> mDNS -> Profiles -> Edit Default-mdns-profile and add service to list
Next we need to create a separat WLAN for the Chromecast devices:
WLANs -> Select Create New and click GO
On the General tab
- Name your Chromecast device WiFi
- Set Radio Policy to b/g band only (a not supported by ChromeCast)
- Select the same back-end Interface as the client WLAN is using
On the Security tab
- ChromeCast needs WPA2-PSK. MAC filtering is optional security
On the Advanced tab
- Make sure P2P communications are not blocked
- Enable mDNS snooping and use the previously defined policy
If you opted in on MAC filtering security for your WLAN:
Security -> AAA -> MAC Filtering -> Select New
- Enter MAC address of the ChromeCast (this is displayed when using the ChromeCast setup tool).
- Select WLAN Profile Name that was previously made for these devices
- Add a fitting Description
- Select the same back-end Interface name as the WLAN is using
Now you are ready to go. Just connect your Chromecast to your monitor and use your Chromecast PC or mobile app to set up the connection. If you are setting up MAC filtering security on your device WLAN you can find the MAC address of your Chromecast on the bottom of your “select Wi-Fi” part of the setup.