Array Networks announced support for intelligent Microsoft Office 365 traffic identification and routing for the company’s APV Series Application Delivery Controllers (ADCs) with the latest ArrayOS version 10.3.0.2 software release. In addition, Array ADCs offer Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) single sign-on to provide unified secure access across all Microsoft applications.
As a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offering, Microsoft Office 365 presents a number of challenges for IT administrators. Direct connectivity to the cloud service is recommended, without passing traffic through data loss prevention and other networks- or cloud-based security services. Each user can create ten or more connections to various Office 365 services, which can introduce latency and high traffic loads. In addition, secure user access to the service is of utmost importance but can require multiple and repeated logins that impact the user experience.
The company said that accurate identification of Office 365 traffic is key to ensuring correct routing and processing. The new APV Series software release utilizes deep packet inspection to go beyond the evaluation of IP packets at Layers 4 and below to examine non-standard port numbers, application protocols and the contents of application data. This highly granular analysis allows administrators to configure dedicated link load balancing for each application protocol to prevent deterioration in the quality of critical Office 365 services due to heavy traffic loads.
Further, Array’s APV Series can act as a SAML or OAuth Service Provider (SP), working with one or more Identity Providers (IdPs) to provide federated authentication and single sign-on (SSO) for users across multiple Office 365 applications and services. For example, the APV Series can interoperate with LDAP and RADIUS servers, OAuth IdPs as well as third-party two-factor and multifactor authentication providers, said the company.
“Office 365 has revolutionized the procurement and deployment of core business applications, however accurately identifying, routing and managing Office 365 traffic correctly can be a challenge for IT departments,” said Paul Andersen, vice president of sales and marketing for Array Networks.
“Through deep packet inspection, the latest version of the APV Series intelligently detects and identifies the wide variety of protocols, ports and contents present in Office 365 traffic, thus providing highly granular and accurate traffic processing while providing secure single sign-on for improved user experience,” said Andersen.