Aruba Pumps Up Wi-Fi Switches

 
 
By Carmen Nobel  |  Posted 2005-05-16 Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Wi-Fi switch maker Aruba Wireless Networks has upgraded its product line with new management features that improve security and voice functions, as well as new hardware that increases data throughput.

Wi-Fi switch maker Aruba Wireless Networks has upgraded its product line with new management features that improve security and voice functions, as well as new hardware that increases data throughput.

ArubaOS Version 2.4 includes an ESI (External Services Interface), which lets it integrate with third-party security products such as wireless systems from Fortinet Inc.

ESI also allows different server groups to perform separate functions on the network, including traffic redirects and per-session load balancing, said officials at the Sunnyvale, Calif., company.

"What they are describing here is a move to make their product less of an appliance and more of a platform—a good move," said Ken Dulaney, an analyst at Gartner Inc., in San Jose, Calif.

Also for securitys sake, the software includes support for SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)-encrypted transactions between an Aruba WLAN (wireless LAN) switch and LDAP servers.

Version 2.4 also includes air-monitoring capabilities that focus on voice traffic. The software listens for any of several voice control session setup requests. If a voice session is detected, using any of several protocols, the software will temporarily cease the RF (radio frequency) scan to give maximum resources to the call.

"Theres no need to do a gratuitous channel change just because it looks good in a demo," said Jon Green, director of product management at Aruba.

The new version also includes multiband scanning, which lets access points serve clients on one band while simultaneously scanning alternate bands for interference or rogue activity, officials said.

On the hardware side, Aruba has introduced the A6000, a new switch that includes a supervisor module capable of processing encrypted traffic at speeds as fast as 3G bps, which is twice as fast as previous modules, officials said.

The switch, which can support as many as 512 access points, is available immediately. Pricing depends on configuration, but it starts at about $14,995 for a switch that supports 48 access points.

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