University deploys Cisco and Aruba solutions to manage 10,000 devices on network
Reports simplified network authentication; broadens range of teaching possibilities
ARUBA Networks Inc has announced that the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) is deploying the company’s enterprise-grade bring-your-own-device (BYOD) solution to manage the mobile devices of over 10,000 users.
The university was looking for a highly secure wireless LAN (local area network) system to provide staff and students with an always-on access to the Internet throughout the whole campus, Aruba said in a statement.
A key requirement was centralised management capabilities as IIUM has five campuses in Gombak, Petaling Jaya, Duta, Damansara and Kuantan. With a small IT team of just 10 staff tasked with managing over 10,000 concurrent users, it was vital to have an easy-to-manage solution.
IIUM evaluated proof-of-concepts from three vendors including HP and Cisco – the latter supplying its wired switches and routers – and chose the Aruba Networks ClearPass access management system, Aruba said.
Albert Tay (pic), Asean general manager at Aruba Networks, said that IIUM is a perfect example of how wireless technology has evolved and is being used to address the onslaught of new mobile devices and applications flooding university networks.
“With Aruba’s technology, IIUM can give its students and faculty access to applications and resources that enhance the educational experience.
"Universities that recognise the importance of a comprehensive wireless and mobile strategy will have a clear advantage in today’s education market,” he claimed.
The university deployed the full ClearPass Policy Manager solution including ClearPass OnBoard for device provisioning and configuration; ClearPass Guest for the secure management of visitor devices; and AirWave for centralised control.
The small IIUM IT team was able to provide productivity enhancing, secure and reliable wireless network access in a highly cost effective manner to staff and students across the university, Aruba said.
The company claimed that ClearPass avoids expensive rip-and-replace programmes and goes further than many Mobile Device Management (MDM) tools that do not provide crucial provisioning and network access control capabilities.
It supports iOS, Android, Mac OS X and Windows 7 devices while its underlying Aruba MOVE (Mobile Virtual Enterprise) architecture enables easy and flexible integration with networking infrastructure from third party vendors. In IIUM’s case, this meant interoperating neatly with Cisco’s wired switches and routers.
Some key features include automated device provisioning; self-service mobile device network configuration; device profiling and risk management to determine individual security requirements; and secure, automated guest device management. The product also allows organisations of all sizes to do more with less, rightsizing their IT resources thanks to centralised management capabilities, Aruba claimed.
After implementing ClearPass, IIUM found huge benefits in being able to centrally manage and enforce user- and device-based access policies across its distributed environment. With the simpler authentication infrastructure, it enabled students and staff to reliably connect to the Internet using multiple devices.
The university commended the reliable performance of having many access points deployed as part of this solution. Rather than having a wired Internet infrastructure that would require greater investment in switches, IIUM saved costs by implementing WiFi in its hostel facilities.
IIUM wirless project manager Sayed Ahmad Fauzi (pic) said that Aruba ClearPass not only simplified network authentication and kept staff and students ’always on’, it also broadened the range of teaching possibilities.
“Aruba’s BYOD solution allows multiple platform client devices to connect to WiFi with ease and reliability. It also provides an expanded teaching arsenal for lectures, allowing students to view e- textbooks, videos, educational apps, online research and digital learning apps,” he added.
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