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As network architectures have become increasingly more diverse, they have also become equally complex, requiring the deployment of technology such as AIOps and cloud-hosted operations. To address these concerns, Juniper Networks has launched enterprise-grade wired access switches for enterprise access layer switching environments, including campus fabric architectures.
Fundamentally, the Mist AI products are designed to bring ease and flexibility to access layer switching, lowering wireless deployment costs with auto access point (AP) placement and orientation, and delivering added insight and actions.
In addition, Juniper has expanded its cloud services with more artificial intelligence (AI)-driven insights to maximise user experiences and minimise wireless management costs, including automated AP placement and orientation verification, new prescriptive actions, and dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP) and wired authentication issues.
EX4100 is designed to bring performance, bandwidth, port density and other key features to a variety of enterprise campus and branch environments. It’s said to be optimised for simplicity and scale with native cloud-based operations, enabling the best user and IT experiences with Juniper’s AIOps offerings.
Mist AI expedites deployment times with zero-touch provisioning and automated workflows, and delivers troubleshooting with stack event correlation, proactive anomaly detection and self-driving network actions. The product is also built to enable IT teams to design a network fabric that extends to distribution and access layers, coupled with security capabilities such as MACsec AES256 and standards-based micro-segmentation using group-based policies (GBP) for the growing needs of internet of things devices.
Noting that many enterprises struggle during WLAN deployments to ensure the placement and orientation of wireless access points (APs) match the planned AP design, Juniper Mist supports ingestion of floor plans from tools such as Ekahau and iBwave. It now automatically validates the actual placement and orientation of APs post-install against desired plans and highlights any misplaced APs to allow for quick and easy correction. This is achieved via the Juniper Wireless Assurance service, which uses virtual Bluetooth LE (vBLE) antenna arrays coupled with patent-pending algorithms that leverage channel state information and 802.11mc FTM/RTT.
With this service, Mist Wi-Fi 6 and 6E APs can be placed automatically on a map and auto-oriented in the Juniper Mist dashboard, with the distances between AP pairs calculated and shown to eliminate deployment errors. By quickly and accurately validating the placement of Mist APs in both greenfield and brownfield environments – without requiring any other external technologies such as GPS – Juniper believes it can simplify AP deployment and reduce overall WLAN installation costs.
The new Marvis AIOps Actions are designed to deliver more client and network insights to the company’s AI-driven virtual network assistant, improving troubleshooting and insight across the wired and wireless domains.
Enhancements include a Marvis Windows Client installed on Windows OS devices to offer enhanced information and network visibility from the client’s perspective. This information is relayed to Mist AI so that Marvis can make more informed and actionable recommendations to remediate any user issues.
Not requiring overlay sensors, Marvis clients obtain client-side data with no additional hardware or software. In addition, Juniper Mist Wired Assurance now provides insight to locate and correct the source of DHCP failures such as with a server, VLAN or client, and delivers wired authentication actions that provide administrators with the ability to identify devices and users who are failing to authenticate continuously on wired devices due to client-side issues.
Assessing the potential for the new services, Zeus Kerravala, founder and principal analyst at ZK Research, said: “By embedding these capabilities natively into all of their access solutions, and constantly expanding them to solve the most common wired/wireless deployment, troubleshooting and management issues, Juniper continues to set the tone for enterprise networks that put user experiences first.”