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Juniper Enterprise Push Continues With Mist AI Extensions, New EX Switch Series

Gina Narcisi

The networking giant is heavily pursuing the enterprise by extending Mist AI into its entire portfolio, including its latest EX access switch series.

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Juniper Networks is continuing its work of extending Mist AI into its entire portfolio to make it easier for businesses and channel partners to access and automate their networks as the networking giant’s enterprise business exceeds growth goals.

Juniper on Wednesday unveiled three new Mist AI features and extensions, as well as a new, born in the cloud access switch series that targets small and medium IT environments.

“This adds to our whole AI-driven enterprise portfolio,” Jeff Aaron, vice president of enterprise marketing at Juniper, told CRN. “It’s definitely geared towards partners and provides a lot for them in terms of troubleshooting, deployment and operations.”

[Related: JUNIPER NETWORKS CEO RAMI RAHIM ON THE ‘ENTERPRISE EXECUTION ENGINE’ AND THE ‘CRITICAL’ ROLE PARTNERS ARE PLAYING]

The EX4100 series of wired access switches have Mist AI baked in to give enterprises and SMBs improved performance, ease, flexibility and security for access layer switching environments. Juniper in the new switch line has expanded its Wired Assurance, Wireless Assurance and Marvis cloud services with AI to boost end user experiences and minimize wireless management costs.

“It’s everything you’d expect from a modern, cloud-based enterprise switch with AI coursing through its veins,” Aaron said.

The new features including automated access point (AP) placement and orientation verification. Many businesses struggle with the placement and orientation of wireless Aps, which are often incorrectly placed. Juniper Mist can now automatically validate actual placement and orientation of APs after they are installed against a client’s deployment design to pinpoint any misplaced APs for quick and easy correction. The feature is achieved through the Juniper Wireless Assurance service, the company said.

Automated AP placement and orientation is an especially great tool for partners that can help them cut down on installation costs, Aaron said.

“We’ve made it way easier to determine whether [deployment] was done right,” he said. “Partners can solve problems quicker and ensure a better, reliable service without having to deploy folks on site to go troubleshoot.”

The EX4100 series builds on the company’s existing EX series of secure access switches that were introduced in 2021: The EX4400 series, which are optimized for the cloud with security and AIOps. The EX4400 lets IT teams design a network fabric that extends from the data center to the campus core, as well as distribution and access layers, like all EX access switches, the EX4400 contains Mist AI.

Nexum Inc., a cybersecurity-focused solution provider and Juniper partner based in Hammond, Indiana, has shifted from “potentially” going with Juniper, to leading with Juniper in many customer engagements, said Allyn Crowe, senior security engineer for Nexum. That’s because of the Mist platform that’s attracting more enterprises to see what Juniper has to offer, Crowe said.

“The focus on enterprise customers has definitely grown since the Mist acquisition. [Juniper] was certainly well-known in the service provider space and in the data center space, but a lot of enterprise clients didn’t use them, just because they didn’t have the level of support that they do now,” he said.

The new switch series brings the features that were available in the cloud ready EX4400 series into a mid-level switch option, Crowe said. “It’s putting a lot of those features into a more affordable platform,” he said. “[The EX4100] definitely gives me a wider range of switches that I can bring to bear for different use cases — it’s another arrow in my in my quiver.”

The Juniper Mist AI engine, Marvis, also offers two new actions: DHCP Failure Scopes and Wired Authentication. DHCP failure scopes give customers and partners context into exactly where an administrator should focus energies while troubleshooting an issue. For wired authentication, Juniper has introduced the new Marvis Windows Client for Windows OS devices that can offer enhanced information and network visibility from the client’s perspective. The data is passed on so the Marvis engine can make more informed and actionable recommendations to remediate user issues and it is done without any overlay sensors. The new Windows Client joins Juniper’s previously released Android Marvis Client. Aaron said that an iOS client is on the company’s roadmap.

The Marvis actions and the Juniper EX4100 switch series are available now.

Learn More: Wireless
Gina Narcisi

Gina Narcisi is a senior editor covering the networking and telecom markets for CRN.com. Prior to joining CRN, she covered the networking, unified communications and cloud space for TechTarget. She can be reached at gnarcisi@thechannelcompany.com.

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