In order to standardise and stabilise the network, meet user expectations and reduce costs, LiU decided to implement a modern network solution from Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise (ALE). The project started with the implementation of the access layer in 2015, followed by the core switches and a Shortest Path Bridge (SPB)-based campus solution connecting all four sites. Finally, the data centre (DC) networks in Linköping and Norrköping were replaced and integrated into the SPB fabric, enabling the support of virtual clients and of servers outside the DC. A new network management system (NMS) was also implemented.
After careful evaluation, Linköping University decided to use Shortest Path Bridging for their new campus network which offered simplified management, largely automated switch configuration, and considerable cost savings. The existing architecture, which included hand-built tunnels and direct physical connections for L2 connectivity, was phased-out and replaced with SPB in 2017.
The physical and logical network architectures are now completely separated. Users can connect using any device, anywhere, anytime, by just connecting to any network socket, and they are automatically connected to the right part of the network (containment). This frees up time and resources so that the IT team can provide more focus and additional services to their customers.