Intelligent CIO North America Issue 24 - Page 63

It was keenly aware of its need for rock-solid DDI , especially with the risk of quick DHCP range use in a high-profile , major league sporting venue . Running out of IP addresses and impairing network connectivity was simply not an option .
This meant upgrading from legacy Microsoft DNS and DHCP and deploying an integrated , enterprise-grade infrastructure for reliable , scalable , private and public core network services . Building on a solid core also enabled the Rangers to meet their key objectivesredundancy , automation and security .
Redundancy was the top priority . Most sports venues deploy private and public networks that have a mix of parallel networks that often fight for address space .
The Rangers took a different path to design and build a fully converged infrastructure including voice , data and video with zero parallel networks for all on-prem , cloud-based and communications services . The design included multiple power pathways , generators and mirrored , purpose-built , data center configurations and deployments to ensure continued business operations – no matter what .
Automation was also a key focus . It deployed Aruba ’ s software-defined network ( SDN ) along with AirWave and ClearPass technologies to shuttle groups in and out of the venue and supply reliable , always-on private and public connectivity for staff , fans and media .
When a user starts a Wi-Fi session , they are placed in their own encrypted tunnel . They can be on the same subnet one IP away from their neighbor sitting next to them , yet their devices will never see each other , even though they still have full access to the Internet . This unique approach is not deployed on many public networks .
The results
With Infoblox , the Rangers ’ Globe Life Field opened on time to host the 2020 World Series with live fans and media at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic . It compressed a 44-month project into 30 months , overcame a myriad of challenges and realized a smooth , frictionless Microsoft DNS and DHCP migration to Infoblox core network services .
In the process , it established a scalable , secure , resilient infrastructure with redundant backups for reliable service continuity . Through its integrations , it could quickly provision 100k plus disparate devices in minutes and deliver a high-speed Internet experience for its corporate and public networks .
Infoblox delivered a unified control platform with real-time DDI data visibility , DNS protection , security ecosystem threat feeds and on-demand reporting and analytics . It connected the Rangers ’ distributed venues and delivered a platform that was easy to deploy , use and maintain by a small IT staff .
IT Director Hedrick noted : “ Without automation , we could not handle the influx of the press . It ’ s more than just connecting to Wi-Fi or a hardwired port . Sometimes they connect robotic cameras , Raspberry Pi devices that act as FTP servers and virtually any other conceivable device , previously seen or not .
“ We successfully profile 99 % of the devices that enter the building . Automation grabs the device ’ s MAC address , drops it into a list , starts profiling and sets it in the right VLAN . It also enables robust policy enforcement and delivers true plug-and-play network connectivity .
“ We never have to worry about what VLAN the port is on , why they can ’ t get to a subnet , or connect to the right public versus private network – profiling handles it all automatically . Everything profiles , everything goes where it should , everything just works and that makes our jobs much easier .”
Security was another essential objective , starting with extreme micro-segmentation , malware , virus , security and posture checks performed by gate staff for access to the corporate network . The public network is much more open .
Hedrick said : “ There were no other real options . Without Infoblox , it would have been impossible to manage . We would not have been ready for the 2020 World Series without Infoblox stepping in to help get things done . The migration and switch-over from Microsoft to the Infoblox domain controllers worked like magic and the rollout was very smooth . Infoblox products are awesome , some of the best equipment we ’ ve deployed in our new stadium , and the local support has been outstanding .” p




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