HP continues to innovate in the realm of bring your own device (BYOD) network administration, with some recently announced key offerings that aim to provide a more unified BYOD experience. Key to this innovation is an update to IMC User Access Manager, which now allows network admins to apply a single policy that users carry across both wired and wireless portions of the network.
Here’s a video interview I did with Mike Banic, VP of Marketing for HP Networking, which breaks down some of the most important details from the announcement.
Unified Wired-WLAN Network Hardware
HP added several new hardware offerings to their network portfolio as well.
830 Wired-WLAN Switch
The 830 unified Wired-WLAN switch comes in an 8 or 24 Gigabit ports configuration with PoE+ support for IP devices plus 24 or 60 wireless access points, all in 1U rack-mounted chasis. The 830 unified switch supports HP’s MSM460, MSM466, MSM466-R, MSM430, and WA2620 access points, IEEE 802.1X protocol, and HP’s Wi-Fi Clear Connect RF optimization, along with integrated intrusion detection, and Layer 2 and Layer 3 roaming.
Unified Wired-WLAN 10500/7500 Module
For heavy duty network configurations, HP offers a unified Wired-WLAN module that fits the 7500 and 10500 series of modular campus switches. Known as the 10500/7500-20G unified wired WLAN module, this module is essentially a card for the modular wireless switch that you add-in to existing wired networks to give them wireless functionality. Each module supports up to 1,024 wireless access points, and in the top-end 10512 switch chassis you can combine up to 11 modules for a total of 11,264 wireless devices.
2920 Series Managed Switch
The 2920 Series managed switch, an upgrade to the 2910 managed switches with support for OpenFlow on its forwarding plane. OpenFlow support is inherent in the 2920, which brings HP’s total number of OpenFlow switches to 29. The 2920 comes with 24 Gigabit Ethernet ports and four optional 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports configured with either SFP+ or 10GBaseT cabling. The 2920-24G has standard ports while the 2920-24G-PoE+ has Power over Ethernet Plus ports for network-connected cameras and IP phones.
Sentinel Security SDN Application
BYOD tends to make enterprise networks more porous due to the more limited control over what end-users install on their devices. As as result, there’s a greater security risk in not being able to isolate specific user behavior easily. HP has a solution here too, thanks to the Sentinel Security SDN Application. Sentinel requires Tipping Point to provide a set of rules that are passed down to OpenFlow switches which can then apply those rules at the port level. This is by far the most practical application of software defined networking I’ve seen to date, as rather than allowing malware or botnets to get all the way to the edge of the network before being blocked, Sentinel shuts down that traffic at the port level by rerouting the DNS away from the undesirable destination.