SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company (NYSE: HPE), today announced that the University of New Hampshire (UNH), a leading public institution and flagship research university, has deployed a new Aruba Wi-Fi network to satisfy the increasing demands of its 16,000 students and 2,000 faculty and staff.
Founded in 1866, UNH maintains three campuses, comprising 2,600 acres and 150 buildings that total 10 million square feet. The University is recognized for its national and international research with a portfolio that includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space.
Like many universities, UNH has experienced a growing population of students bringing multiple mobile devices to campus and demanding seamless, high-performance wireless connectivity everywhere on campus. The ability to offer fast, reliable Wi-Fi was becoming an important factor in attracting prospective students as well as top-notch teaching talent. In addition, the University realized that secure and seamless wireless connectivity was critical for in-classroom educational applications and test-taking, and to support UNH’s extensive research agenda.
UNH’s existing infrastructure simply could not handle the increasing demands which UNH Telecom Operations Manager, Dan Corbeil, characterizes as approximately 67,000 registered and 17,000 simultaneous mobile device connections on any given day.
“We were hearing from students who were experiencing slow connections or who were just being dropped from the wireless whether they were using it in their dorm rooms or on campus,” said Corbeil. The service degradation was caused by a combination of older technology and the explosion of the number of Wi-Fi connected devices.
Corbeil noted that the problems extended into the classrooms where faculty, also plagued by the connection issues, would tell students not to use the wireless network to access their application for taking tests.
“Students were noting that they were being dropped mid-test or that their test would time out. Both students and faculty were understandably frustrated,” he said.
Realizing that a forklift upgrade was inevitable, UNH evaluated solutions from multiple vendors, before deciding to standardize on Aruba.
UNH deployed Aruba 7200 Series Mobility Controllers, 320 Series Access Points (802.11ac Wave 2), AirWave network management and ClearPass for policy management and authentication. The University is also using Aruba’s 270 Series APs in some outdoor areas and a combination of APs in its football stadium both in the interior club and press level suites and in some sections in under-the-seat configurations.
According to Corbeil, Aruba AirWave with Clarity was of interest, as they wanted visibility into the myriad of devices on the network. Clarity helps pinpoint and resolve connectivity issues quickly and easily before users are affected, rather than after the fact. Corbeil also noted that ClientMatch, a component of Aruba’s RF management technology that monitors and automatically matches clients to the best available access point, was a key feature that helped confirm their decision.
“ClientMatch was certainly attractive and I don’t think there was any other vendor doing this,” he noted. “Its ability to provide a better experience for our users was one of the deciding factors.”
With the new Wave 2-based network in place, UNH can satisfy the institution’s current needs, while laying the foundation for future initiatives including expanding outdoor wireless coverage, upgrading the Wi-Fi in UNH’s hockey arena, and eliminating more wired ports to reinvest the savings in the Wi-Fi. Corbeil says that the new network is already accomplishing UNH’s goal of delivering reliable, high-performing connectivity to students and faculty and improving the wireless experience across campus.
About Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company
Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, is a leading provider of next-generation networking solutions for enterprises of all sizes worldwide. The company delivers IT solutions that empower organizations to serve the latest generation of mobile-savvy users who rely on cloud-based business apps for every aspect of their work and personal lives.
To learn more, visit Aruba at http://www.arubanetworks.com. For real-time news updates follow Aruba on Twitter and Facebook, and for the latest technical discussions on mobility and Aruba products visit Airheads Social at http://community.arubanetworks.com.