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Aruba announces upgrades for edge, cloud platforms

The wireless networking company has introduced new software upgrades to assist with both network security and agility.

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Aruba has revealed several enhancements to two of its platforms to assist both with security and speed in edge-to-cloud platforms. The Hewlett Packard Enterprise subsidiary plans to deliver improvements to both its edge services platform, Aruba ESP, and new services in Aruba Central, its cloud networking solution to streamline processes for enterprises using the software.

One of the new features announced is Aruba Central’s NetConductor, providing companies with the ability to access a number of distributed networks from one central location, allowing for the simplification of network management. This central network will allow for more flexibility with policy provisioning and granting enterprises additional automated network configurations in wired, wireless and wide area networks (WAN), according to Aruba.

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NetConductor and its uses

NetConductor’s introduction also boasts security enhancements to both streamline networks while also administering Zero Trust and Secure access service edge (SASE) policies. This integration is expected to aid businesses in being more secure with the rate of ransomware and malware attacks rising along with the new reporting standards passed as part of the Strengthening American Cybersecurity Act.

“Enterprises have shown tremendous resiliency in the face of major disruptions and tectonic shifts within their businesses over the past two years, and it’s become clear that business agility is now top-of-mind for our customers,” said David Hughes, chief technology and product officer at Aruba. “The advancements introduced today will help customers evolve their approach to a ‘services orientation’ using AI-powered solutions, strengthening security and accelerating the move to a cloud-centric network architecture, which are all hallmarks of a modern network.”

NetConductor will use AI to assist with network administration and defenses, implementing workflows focused on doing business in a seamless fashion for organizations moving to this platform.

The three main network focuses cited by the NetConductor release of its upgraded platform include:

  • Automation – Intent-based workflows with one-button connectivity and security orchestration
  • Security – Pervasive role-based access control for built-in Zero-Trust and SASE security
  • Agility – Cloud-native services for a single point of visibility and control

This expansion of Aruba’s platforms is largely due to the move to the hybrid and remote work models implemented as part of the COVID-19 pandemic. To help the transition to these new work variations, the wireless networking company is focused on employing a network overlay, combining the virtual LAN (VLAN) segments to assist with making devices more reliable while also ramping up layers of security for enterprises.

SEE: iCloud vs. OneDrive: Which is best for Mac, iPad and iPhone users? (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

WLAN implementations

Another area being upgraded through Aruba’s announcement is through WLAN access point installation. The company has introduced the industry’s first self-locating indoor access points to assist with streamlining how organizations quantify indoor location data and connect over the air to mobile devices and applications. Through the use of Aruba’s Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E access points, users can employ GPS receivers to deploy definitive and automatic WLAN stationing.

Accurate locationing will allow businesses to use universal coordinates and anchored reference points to upgrade not only an enterprises’ asset tracking abilities but also its safety and compliance enhancements along with facility planning and other features that require location services. This addition, in turn, will positively impact companies needing help in these areas and assist with reducing costs across the board.

“In today’s business world, flexibility is paramount – enterprises need to be able to shift gears, turn up new services and offerings, and serve new customers seemingly overnight. Because the network underpins everything – enabling critical connectivity and data-driven intelligence – it’s got to have the flexibility built-in,” said Maribel Lopez, founder of Lopez Research. “Organizations today should look for standards-based solutions that give them technical flexibility and the ability to protect their investments and adopt new technologies at their own pace, but also options when it comes to consumption models.”

Aruba says NetConductor services are now available for early access, and it expects these new technologies to become widely available in June of this year.

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