Alcatel-Lucent has unveiled major enhancements to its enterprise solutions portfolio with the launch of its Unified Access approach for both wired and wireless networks.
The rapid proliferation of mobile devices and use of multimedia services among employees has led to new challenges for enterprises and IT managers. Multiple operating systems, adoption of cloud and dynamic network demand is overwhelming the capabilities of separate stand-alone IT tools and systems. In addition, many enterprise networks have not kept pace with the need to deliver secure and dynamic services to user communities.
Alcatel-Lucent’s Unified Access is a converged wired and wireless solution to address networking challenges, management complexity and offer a consistent user experience. It comprises a set of secure BYOD (bring your own device) services that enables employees and customers to use corporate or personal, wired or wireless devices on the enterprise network, while the enhancements also help simplify IT operations, improving security and protecting the business’ investments.
As a result, Unified Access enhances Alcatel-Lucent’s Converged Campus Network solution, delivering the power of policy integration, network services, BYOD support and cross-platform security to enterprise networks.
Unified Access can be implemented via software upgrades without replacing existing equipment, providing a gradual approach to evolving the network and maximising investment. IT managers can also easily define appropriate security and quality of service (QoS) policies enabling the network to dynamically adjust to the communication context, taking into consideration priorities and bandwidth criteria for user, device, application, location and time of day.
To drive adoption of Unified Access, Alcatel-Lucent is working with long-time Wi-Fi technology partner Aruba Networks to offer a full suite of BYOD services as part of the unified and open-campus network solutions. With a common strategy towards open standards and emerging technologies, such as software defined networking (SDN), the resulting integrated wired and wireless solutions provide a best-of-breed approach eliminating vendor lock-in and reducing total cost of ownership.
Since 2001, external linkAbilene Christian University (ACU), based in Abilene, Texas, has built a long standing relationship with Alcatel-Lucent. The Unified Access and Aruba ClearPass technology enables ACU to bring all products under one view and provide a stronger platform to deliver innovative capabilities for students in the near future. The IT staff, faculty, educators and 4,500 students are already experiencing benefits from the Unified Access offer.
“We built a network that protects students and also gives them a consistent experience that meets the expectations of their digital lives,” said Kevin Roberts, Abilene Christian University CIO. “At ACU we focused on providing critical learning opportunities for our students, and offering the latest in technology helps make this real.”
Unified Access capabilities are offered across Alcatel-Lucent’s entire enterprise networking portfolio, requiring only a software upgrade to deploy while preserving existing equipment. Unified Access network services and BYOD services are available today.
Aruba’s ClearPass Access Management System allows enterprises to securely provision and manage mobile devices on enterprise networks, and is integrated with Alcatel-Lucent OmniSwitches, OmniAccess routers and OmniVista NMS for a seamless, consistent user experience.
Aruba’s AirGroup services under ClearPass Policy Manager, supported on both the wired and wireless LAN, enable end users and IT administrators to self-register Apple® devices. In the higher education environment, students in dorms can plug in printers, Apple TVs, and other consumer devices, register them and set access limits for select friends use instead of the whole campus, all without IT involvement.
Management enhancements ease the burden of IT by automating operations for BYOD services such as device configuration and guest registration and provide common troubleshooting and monitoring tools across the wired and wireless networks.
New security features such as automatic configuration of 802.1x security and certificates increase LAN security to be on par with the wireless experience. Devices like laptops, tablets, printers and cameras are automatically registered, keeping the network secure without overloading IT departments with manual tasks.
Extensive professional services offerings, leveraging Alcatel-Lucent’s broad knowledge of wired and wireless LAN networking, support channel partners and their customers in evolving their network to support unified access and BYOD services.