Blog IoT

5 Steps for Dealing with IoT on Your Network

Kendra Luciano Published 15 Aug 2018

An explosion of “things” is coming to a network near you – wearables, temperature sensors, video cameras, BLE, Thread, iBeacons, surveillance, gateways, building controls, and much more – are you ready for it? The Internet of Things (IoT) was a hotly discussed topic at our global user conference, Extreme Connect, this year because IoT devices are affecting networks in all industries. Whether it’s for improving the user experience, increasing efficiency, or creating new revenue, IoT is already on your network or will be soon.

Industry use cases include:

  • EducationIoT enables educators to implement technology in the classroom through BYOD, smart displays, sensors for experiments, and video cameras. Additionally, schools and universities are taking advantage of IoT by connecting their physical campus infrastructure through HVAC, security cameras and smart lights to name a few.
  • Healthcare – the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) is transforming the way medical equipment operates. Many hospitals are supporting wired and Wi-Fi enabled IV-pumps, x-ray machines, telemetry monitors, MRI machines, hand wash detectors, and much more. Utilizing IoMT allows healthcare providers to segment and monitor devices in real-time to ensure they are secure and working properly.
  • Government – IoT in driving smart city and smart government initiatives with the goal of sharing data and creating heightened efficiency. With resources used for lighting, heating, and cooling on the network, controlled by hundreds of sensors and controls, smart buildings optimize energy usage and reduce operating costs.
  • Hospitality – many hotel rooms include smart locks, lights and thermostats that are all connected to the network. Often, guests have the option to check in and check out via hotel’s mobile app.
  • Manufacturing – IoT enables smart factories that are capable of tracking production flow, inventory, vehicles, and assets in real-time to optimize product throughput. Additionally, IoT sensors monitor facility conditions to ensure machine tools are operating under the correct conditions, increasing efficiency and eliminating malfunctions.

The benefits of the Internet of Things are endless, but with more and more devices joining the network it’s critical that your network is prepared. Let’s take a practical look at preparing your wired and wireless infrastructure for the Internet of Things with these five easy steps:

  1. Discover – Identifying the type of device that is coming onto the network is critical for ensuring that your devices are assigned to the right role. For more, read how ExtremeControl can help.
  1. On-Board – Now that we know what the device is, and the role is established, the network needs to map that device to its role. This will enable the predefined business rules for the exact expectation of a device. ExtremeControl enables you to apply controls based on your unique business needs making onboarding devices easy and secure.
  1. Contain – All devices are not created equal! Security is key to ensure that your IoT solution is working as efficiently as possible and making sure devices are segmented is critical. Segmenting devices ensures that traffic is prioritized and the network can adapt based on a device’s role.

    With policies from ExtremeControl, segmentation capabilities are VLAN and SSID independent, so all devices can be contained in the same network segment (SSID or VLAN), but have different roles and traffic to be treated differently.

    IP Fabric, like Extreme Fabric Connect, simplifies the network’s ability to autonomously adapt to new devices and services coming onto the network. Now your fabric can expand automatically and client devices are automatically detected and mapped into the right role without much thought. 

    Extreme Defender for IoT enables clinical segmentation and secure zones, automated onboarding and inventory management and centralized device profiles. This ensures that all devices joining the network are doing so securely from end-to-end.

  1. Monitor – The beauty (or challenge) with the network is that it is always changing. With the devices discovered, on-boarded, and contained, having the ability to monitor and identify problems when they occur is critical. Extreme Management Center provides real-time coverage maps which allows IT departments to locate and fix the right sensor remotely.
  1. Optimize – As more sensors are being added to the network, being able to adapt to network changes is vital. Having visibility into the network, with a tool like Extreme Management Center, allows you to make adjustments from the back-end, whether that means changing traffic priorities or dropping from 40 MHz channels to 20 MHz.

An End-to-End Service Delivery Solution

Extreme’s steps and technology solutions for managing IoT devices on the network is far more advanced than our competitors’. We are the only vendor to provide end-to-end service delivery autonomously. Organizations need an IoT solution that can securely manage both wired and wireless devices in today’s digital era. Extreme has a strong portfolio to keep your network advanced from the smart edge, to the automated campus, through the agile data center.

The autonomous solution for dealing with IoT includes:

  • Extreme Fabric Connect – provides unprecedented infrastructure productivity by optimizing the way networks are deployed, implemented, operated and maintained. Fabric Connect empowers versatile placement of networking components and interconnections. End-to-end connectivity is automatically and instantaneously calculated.
  • Extreme Fabric Attach – enables any Fabric Attach capable device to be securely auto-attached to the network. These devices can be authorized for a network service and attached to the appropriate network service instance – all automatically and based on IT policy.
  • Extreme Management Center – offers a single pane of glass view into the wired and wireless network providing you with data-driven insights, visibility and control into all devices on the network.
  • ExtremeControl – offers the ability to control users and devices across your wired and wireless networks with granular visibility and in-depth control. All from your central location.

Bringing in a device and having it connect and immediately identifying the role and data path makes managing IoT in your network easier than ever. You’ll just plug in the IoT device, set it, and forget it, let the network do the rest. The Extreme solution will discover, onboard, secure, monitor, and optimize the IoT devices. This solution allows networks to adapt to the unique demands of businesses across all industries and makes for a fully-optimized networks.

Additional Resources:

Related Government Stories