Interop: D-Link Turns Eyes To Cloud For Network Management

The addition of cloud management capabilities, which D-Link unveiled at Interop Las Vegas 2011, is part of a three-pronged cloud assault D-Link is plotting.

According to Ken Loyd, D-Links director of product marketing, adding cloud capabilities to its growing portfolio gives D-Link new features and functions to target is SMB and mid-sized clients and arms solution providers with the ability to offer clients in that market segment more sophisticated capabilities.

"What we're trying to do is offer our customers more," Loyd said of D-Link's new roster of Cloud Managed products.

First up is Insight Cloud Managed Client Security for D-Link Web Smart Switches, a cloud-based network management play that gives solution providers and users the ability to stop threats on user PCs via cloud-based monitoring. Insight is available in two flavors: Basic and Plus.

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Insight Basic offers network discovery; tracking of devices connected to the switch by MAC address; IP and switch port; DHCP OS fingerprinting to authenticate DHCP and DNS servers, routers and gateways and clients; automatic configuration management with backup of switch settings; and notification alerts indicating change in device connectivity to the network.

Insight Plus includes the Insight Basic functionality and adds active security monitoring of individual connected devices and extended OS fingerprinting functions, including Microsoft NAP for visibility into compliance of security policy; compliance reports of Windows and Mac clients for OS updates, anti-virus updates and firewall status; and administrator warnings. Insight Basic is free for a year with the purchase of a Web Smart Switch and $50 per year afterward; while Insight Plus is free for 30-days and $180 per year afterward.

Loyd said solution providers can leverage Insight to manage various customer environments, as management is done through a cloud portal, and it can also be a source of recurring revenue.

"It takes the hard work out of network management," Loyd said.

D-Link also unveiled its DIR-605 Fuzion Broadband Aggregation Router, which boosts bandwidth and reliability through a cloud-based failover protection feature and enables broadband lines to function as a single connection. The router offers bandwidth aggregation of multiple connections, both upstream and downstream; interoperability with single or multiple ISPs and broadband types; secure traffic exchange; and the implementation of bandwidth demand applications like VPN, VoIP, video conferencing.

The DIR-605 also offers a cloud portal for central administration, management of Internet traffic, monitoring and graphical reporting of status and trends, Loyd said. The DIR-605 hardware runs $399 per router and each features a one-year subscription to the Fuzion Cloud service. After one year, the Fuzion service is $299 annually.

Loyd said solution providers get the ability to offer Fuzion as managed service to manage clients' broadband environments and keep tabs on their bandwidth needs.

Lastly, D-Link added a new access point to its roster of CloudCommand-powered offerings. CloudCommand by Power Cloud. Now, Loyd said, D-Link's DAP-3525 AirPremier N Dual Band Exterior PoE Access Point features CloudCommand. CloudCommand eases the deployment of wireless access points by leveraging the cloud for automated configuration. VARs can deploy secure, managed Wi-Fi networks with several access points more quickly. CloudCommand enables users and solution providers to send an access point to a remote office and when that access point is plugged in it configures itself via the cloud to create a plug-and-play WLAN.

Loyd said D-Link is leveraging the cloud to give solution providers the ability to offer unique value to their small business customers while creating new revenue streams.

"This is a growing need in the market place," Loyd said. "It's all around ease of deployment, maintenance and service."