Juniper Networks' cloud-based NAC solution driven by Mist AI
We are excited to announce the latest advancements in network access control (NAC) brought by Juniper Networks. With a focus on improving user experience, Juniper introduces its own cloud-based solution driven by Mist AI. Additionally, the company has integrated the ChatGPT technology into its Marvis virtual network assistant (VNA).
Legacy NAC services built on on-premises overlay hardware have often been challenging to deploy, operate, and authenticate devices. They lack agility and scalability. Christian Gilby, Senior Director of Product Marketing at Juniper Networks, highlights these limitations. In response, Juniper has developed Mist Access Assurance, a cloud-native NAC service, utilising the technology acquired through the WiteSand acquisition. By integrating this solution into Juniper's Mist portfolio, the company aims to compete with industry leaders such as Cisco's Identity Services Engine and Aruba Networks' Clearpass NACs.
Juniper's new NAC solution seamlessly integrates with its networking and security services, including wired, wireless, and SD-WAN portfolios, as well as Mist artificial intelligence (AI) and Connected Security services. Jeff Aaron, VP of Enterprise Marketing at Juniper Networks, explains that Mist AI empowers the NAC service to gain insights into user experiences and network issues. It streamlines configuration, troubleshooting, and operations through automation.
Integration of ChatGPT into Juniper's Marvis VNA enhances user support
While Juniper maintains its collaborations with third-party NAC vendors like Cisco and Aruba, Gilby emphasises the advantages of Juniper's cloud-native and AI-driven NAC solution. It simplifies deployment and rollout, enhances user experience, accelerates issue detection, and allows partners and sales teams to easily activate the service from the cloud.
Juniper Networks has been actively integrating AI capabilities into its networking portfolio since the acquisition of Mist AI in 2019. The recent addition of ChatGPT further enhances their offerings. Initially known as a wireless local area network vendor, Mist AI developed the Marvis AI engine, which has become the centrepiece of Juniper's AI-based enterprise strategy.
To enhance Marvis's conversational interface (CI), Juniper leverages OpenAI's ChatGPT API, enabling more natural and human-like conversations, particularly in the context of documentation and support. Maribel Lopez, Founder and Principal Analyst at Lopez Research LLC, praises this integration, stating that large language models (LLMs) improve the generation of natural language text, providing clear answers and reducing the time spent searching for specific details.
According to Aaron, Juniper is among the first networking vendors to integrate ChatGPT and LLM into its model. He clarifies that LLM complements Marvis by excelling in historical queries rather than real-time issues. For instance, it can efficiently address questions about the meaning of blinking lights on LED indicators. Juniper has built its own private data store, utilising its knowledge and token for the ChatGPT integration, ensuring accurate and reliable responses.
We emphasise that the integration focuses on effectively extracting information from Juniper's documentation and does not utilise customer data. Gilby acknowledges customers' concerns regarding data privacy and assures that the company is committed to maintaining a high level of sensitivity to these concerns.
Aaron concludes by highlighting that the LLM integration is unidirectional and does not allow modifications. Its primary purpose is to pull data and deliver valuable insights, enhancing the overall user experience and knowledge retrieval from Juniper's documentation.