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Arrow Electronics, Inc.

Exploring the Possibilities of Aruba Central

January 22, 2022

Cloud adoption and the intelligent edge have rapidly accelerated in recent years, transforming IT domains such as compute, storage and, now, the network. For businesses to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances, they must take advantage of new networking technology; with agility, connectivity, and the ability to support remote and WFH models as priorities.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated this need, requiring networks to have a unified infrastructure that eliminates silos and streamlines operations with full security, and AI powered features that can identify issues before they occur.

As organisations pivot to hybrid working environments, there are common challenges that many companies face. Ensuring optimal network efficiencies with near-zero downtime so that users can communicate remotely with each other, their clients, and company servers is critical. This challenge is further compounded by many organisations having outdated management systems, and historically complex and distributed IT infrastructure, including diverse communication channels, network architectures, and software applications.

Additional challenges include:

  • Technology silos - Which hinder agility
  • Lack of automation and visibility - Time-consuming implementation and poor understanding of root cause issues
  • Security threats - Unauthorised installations of IOT devices
  • Remote worker issues - Limited performance and output
  • Economic and resource constraints - Reallocating budgets to meet shifting priorities

As a result, legacy networks struggle to manage the requirements of today’s business environments.

The network needs of modern businesses 

To ensure business success, agility and operational efficiency are critical. Modern networks must keep up and have the ability to deploy services to support the Intelligent edge, and to see beyond the here and now.

Aruba Central is a powerful cloud networking solution with AI-powered insights, workflow automation, and robust security that enables IT to manage and optimise campus, branch, remote, data centre, and IoT networks from a single dashboard. All of which can be consumed as a service.

Below we explore some primary network requirements for modern businesses and how they can be met with Aruba Central.

  1. Network performance

    Automation must be a defining characteristic of the modern network. Configuring, managing, testing, deploying, and operating physical and virtual network devices should be automated. 

    Network service availability (or uptime) improves exponentially when daily tasks, functions and repetitive processes are automated. 

    Aruba Central’s analytics reports compare the latest metrics against pre-programmed operational models, providing real-time information to help make functional decisions to improve network performance, broad visibility, and monitoring.

    Raw network data, including real-time streaming data, is collected and analysed to provide up-to-date information that will help improve the performance, reliability, visibility, or security of the network.

  2. Network management

    Networks that are managed using a variety of siloed tools, with limited AI functionality, and reduced feature and deployment flexibility can impact agility and the ability to support ever-changing working environments.  Today’s management systems include AI-powered features with built-in security, and the ability to unify network operations across all domains and locations.

    Aruba Central has a vision for unifying network management under a single pane of glass. This 'as a service' model is gaining traction due to the ability to control costs, increase efficiency, and reduce downtime. It also enables organisations greater flexibility and control over how they consume and pay for their network management.

  3. Network assurance

    Network assurance is essential to ensure that the appropriate level and quality of network service are delivered to customers. These assurance features help improve network performance and security as well as the user experience. 

    The most effective way to implement a robust network assurance strategy is to ensure that network security, usage, and quality policies are clearly defined and well-maintained. The network and the assets,  infrastructure, data, and software remain secured at all times.

    Aruba Central is designed to cater to both cloud and on-premises network infrastructure; thereby, providing a single solution for organisations that have networks that span both environments and have either cloud or on-premises network architecture.

Benefits of a cloud-based networking system

To maximise the many advantages of the cloud, a network should be agile with the ability to connect into and out of cloud data centres through to remote working locations.

The benefits of cloud networking include:

  • Reduced infrastructure spend
  • Automated, centralised software updates ensuring that the network and all devices on the network are secure and patched, preventing hackers from gaining unauthorised access
  • Automate and assist decision making by powering AI and machine learning
  • The ability to quickly scale up and scale down IT infrastructure without having to purchase and wait for expensive equipment to arrive
  • Improved productivity and user experience

Aruba Central is unique in that it is the only cloud-native networking solution that orchestrates the management of such diverse network infrastructure. It is designed to simplify the maintenance of corporate networks through a single interface or dashboard for all operations.

Aruba Central’s key benefits include: 

  • AIOps (Artificial Intelligence and Operations) for wireless, wired, and SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Network) or virtual networks which enables the network to predict issues before they occur, resulting in a proactive approach rather than reactive
  • The ability to rapidly scale up to tens of thousands of cloud, on-premises, and as-a-service devices in a single instance resulting in better use of resources and outcomes
  • Zero-touch provisioning that simplifies deployment and lifecycle management
  • Automated orchestrated capabilities from a centralised management console
  • Zero trust security to increase protection levels whilst simplifying operations
  • IT teams are able to manage network infrastructure remotely

Aruba Central offers organisations a simple, secure, and cost-effective way to deploy, monitor, and manage both wired and wireless networks. 

Aruba Central has the capacity to simplify the process of adopting a cloud-based network architecture. And where remote employees need to install their own edge network devices, Aruba’s zero-touch provisioning allows non-technical users to unpack and power on the Access Point (AP) or switch. Its configuration and firmware are downloaded and installed directly from Aruba Central.

Aruba Central offers the ability to set up the zero-touch provisioning and monitor from a centralised user interface (UI) to ensure that the devices are provisioned correctly for remote employees. Analytics provided by Aruba Central to monitor and optimise these devices can be used to improve remote worker productivity.

Final thoughts

Aruba Central is the only cloud-based networking platform that supports both on-premises and cloud-based networking with a single UI to deploy, manage, and monitor infrastructure across campus, branch, data centre, and remote workers.

Arrow can support your sales motion with resources that can help engage with end customers, design solutions and build a financial model that best suits your customer.  Contact us to help you win.