Ruckus SmartZone: The First Network Controller-Based System for Wired and Wireless

Network complexity has significantly increased in recent years. Consequently, operators, managed service providers (MSPs) and large enterprises are finding it more challenging than ever to control network administrative costs.

To reduce overhead, these organisations are clamoring for an all-in-one solution that securely streamlines the control and management of multiple IT elements within the network. In addition, MSPs offering networking-as-a-service (NaaS) demand a solution that offers architectural flexibility and scalability to address heterogeneous, multi-tiered tenancy requirements, along with hybrid data, control and management topologies to support a myriad of service offerings.

These organisations also need a lineup of network business intelligence (BI) features, such as advanced reporting and detailed analytics, along with intuitive user interfaces (UIs) and custom data-rich dashboards with streaming (open) API support. In addition, operators require their own management tier, as well as administrative tiers for direct customers or multiple tiers of administration offered via downstream smaller MSPs.

Simplifying converged network management

Today, Ruckus is announcing the availability of SmartZone™ network controllers – newly enhanced versions of its SmartZone WLAN controllers – powered by the latest release of its SmartZoneOS software. SmartZone network controllers include physical and virtual appliances designed for operators, managed service providers and mid-to-large sized enterprises.

First introduced in 2015, SmartZoneOS-powered controllers combine scalability, tiered multi-tenancy, architectural flexibility and extensive APIs into a single centrally-managed console. These capabilities enable operators to implement complex, multi-tier and as-a-service business models using their own management applications.

They also allow organisations to manage subscriber data traffic on a massive scale and integrate traffic flows and network data into existing network architectures. SmartZone network controllers further enable enterprises to simplify network management through consolidation and use of built-in troubleshooting and analytics tools. SmartZone provides a multi-language user interface (UI) that powers a data-rich dashboard for health and traffic analytics and visual troubleshooting tools. It should be noted that SmartZone is deployed in thousands of enterprises – and in more than 200 service provider networks on five continents.

Enabling networking-as-a-service

The SmartZoneOS reduces the need for complex command line interface (CLI) gymnastics by providing open, well-documented RESTful application programming interfaces (APIs) that allow IT to easily invoke SmartZone functions and configurations, enabling error-free automation. In addition, streaming APIs help IT to monitor – in near real-time – the full array of Ruckus network data, statistics and alarms, thereby facilitating the easy creation of customised, information-dense dashboards and reports within their own applications.

Moreover, SmartZone network controllers simplify the creation of consistent network access policies across a wired and wireless network – with tailored firmware/software updates throughout the network to ensure trackable version control and accurate (version-specific) reporting. SmartZoneOS 5 includes an automated switch discovery feature and supports switch restoration to the last configuration point in time.

Additional SmartZone network controller features include:

  • Switch registration, authentication, backup and restore capabilities
  • Supports adaptive band balancing, load balancing, airtime fairness, hotspot and guest services, as well as capacity-based admission control
  • Supports hierarchical switch groups, network health monitoring, alarms and port status
  • Support for switch traffic statistics, LLDP neighbors, stand-alone and stacking
  • Rogue AP detection and mitigation, URL filtering, automated enhanced client security/DPSK, two-factor authentication and isolation white list
  • Easy PCI readiness and geo-redundancy capabilities
  • Data-plane flexibility for hybrid data routing topologies
  • Tunnel traffic routing to multiple third-party gateways
  • Service provider support for tiered SLA offerings
  • Multi-tiered tenancy architecture for segmented operating domains, admin boundaries and profile isolation

To recap, Ruckus’ new SmartZone network controllers – which support up to 450K devices – are an all-in-one solution for operators, managed service providers and mid-to-large sized enterprises seeking to simplify managing both wired and wireless networks through a single console – and offer networking-as-a-service that supports customisable tenant-view dashboards built from a comprehensive set of RESTful and streaming APIs.

View the original press release from Ruckus.