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Managing a Global Wireless LAN

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Managing a Global Wireless LAN

White Paper

Executive Overview

Intel IT developed a new management and support structure for wireless LANs (WLANs). We consolidated first-level support and centralized the WLAN engineer workgroup as well as device management. We manage the WLAN as an integrated service that enables centralized control of the WLAN, using global tools for centralized monitoring, reporting, and configuration. This approach provides all stakeholders with a common view of the components of the WLAN service and the network.

Our centralized WLAN management system offers several benefits to IT.

• Increases efficiency. Previously, local WLAN configuration changes required five minutes per access point; the central WLAN management system reduces this to just five minutes per building. Replicated across 150 sites, we can greatly improve efficiency.
• Uses global configuration templates. Common templates apply to the entire global network, which enables us to efficiently make configuration changes, verify configurations, and monitor for unauthorized configuration changes.
• Enables reporting. Provides useful information, such as WLAN device inventories and wireless adoption trends, to IT and other Intel groups, supporting informed business decisions.
• Enables us to be supplier-independent. The system’s simple user interface allows non-specialists to monitor and diagnose simple WLAN problems without learning supplier- and equipment-specific commands. We can add new equipment and OS versions with minimal retraining of personnel.

Our WLAN management system is the first wholly centralized managed service within Intel IT. The combination of central IT engineering expertise, a set of global guidelines, and a centralized management platform allows us to deliver a highly available service with minimal support staff.

Read the full Global Wireless LAN White Paper.