Pentagon updates wired and wireless connectivity with Aruba

Upgraded networks will support the US Department of Defense’s headquarters and tens of thousands of devices

The Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia

The US Department of Defense (DoD) is employing Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, to modernize the Pentagon’s classified and unclassified networks to support tens of thousands of wired and wireless devices. 

Aruba’s ESP-based architecture will implement an automated networking infrastructure to eliminate manual processes (e.g., port mapping, initial switch configuration). The goal is to create operational efficiencies, provide users with automated access to secure devices, and reduce overhead for IT training and support.

The Pentagon is the US military’s headquarters and spans more than 6.5 million square feet. Its modernization efforts include creating a single platform across all network classification levels for wired, wireless and security solutions.

Aruba’s solution will meet the Pentagon’s need for software-defined networking (SDN) capabilities that work with other vendors and systems. It will also provide more than 3,000 Aruba Access Points (APs) to expand and update the Pentagon’s wireless network.

The Pentagon previously used Cisco wired switching infrastructure, and the legacy network has reached its end of life. Aruba access switches replace the legacy switches across all classification levels. The wired deployment will include more than 150,000 wired ports. 

To provide secure network access across the Pentagon’s networks, it’s expanding the use of Aruba ClearPass Policy Manager, which includes a colorless ports feature. The Pentagon may use ClearPass to provide wired and wireless access for all network classifications in the future.

Aruba is a global leader in secure, intelligent, edge-to-cloud networking solutions. It uses artificial intelligence (AI) to automate its network and harnesses data to drive business outcomes.

Aruba uses Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform) and as-a-service options to provide “a cloud-native approach to helping customers meet their connectivity, security, and financial requirements across campus, branch, data center, and remote worker environments, covering all aspects of wired, wireless LAN, and wide area networking (WAN).”

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