Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Cisco ACS is reaching end of life - Radiator has got you covered

As announced already some time ago, Cisco will no longer support either the hardware or the software of their Access Control System (Cisco ACS) product line. If your network administration still runs Cisco ACS, it’s time to take action and upgrade it into a product with a clear future for updates and support. Radiator AAA Server software, often referred to as the Swiss Army Knife of AAA Servers, can pick up from there.

As mentioned in a previous Radiator Cookbook post in 2018, Radiator AAA Server Software offers TACACS+ support and can be integrated with existing hardware to replace current solution’s TACACS+ and RADIUS functionalities. This means that Radiator can replace the authentication functions Cisco ACS did in your previous system. All that is required is an external database for user credentials that Radiator integrates to.


Radiator is actively developed, with multiple updates per year, so continuous support for your solution is given. And most importantly, Radiator’s support team consists of experienced professionals who have developed and actively develop Radiator AAA, so your support requests are always handled by capable RADIUS and TACACS+ experts.

These same professionals will be handling the transition work from ACS to Radiator AAA, if you so wish. Our technical team consists of experienced seniors with vast experience in enterprise, ISP, CSP and other AAA solution integrations and have done these transition projects even before the EOL was announced.

Radiator, being a flexible AAA Server with TACACS+ support, can replace ACS’s TACACS+ and RADIUS functions. Radiator does not have the built-in database, but rather integrates to a customer’s existing database. If need be, we are happy this database solution through our partner. The flexibility of Radiator also includes multi-vendor support for NAS devices. This means that changing NAS devices will not be troubled by vendor lock-in.

Want to know more?

If you want to know more about Radiator AAA Server software as the flexible and supported replacement for Cisco ACS, do not hesitate to contact our sales team sales(at)radiatorsoftware.com.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Radiator supports EAP-TLS 1.3

One of the most used authentication methods for Radiator users is EAP-TLS. It is widely supported among wireless vendors and the support for EAP-TLS is needed for different certifications for wireless authentication. Radiator has supported different versions of EAP-TLS from the start. As we want to be in the forefront of industry standards, we are happy to announce that Radiator now supports EAP-TLS 1.3 - our team has also been involved in the standardisation work for EAP-TLS and other TLS-based EAP methods.

What is new in EAP-TLS 1.3?

The key feature in EAP-TLS 1.3 is increased privacy and security. Like the RFC document says “TLS 1.3 is in large part a complete remodeling of the TLS handshake protocol including a different message flow, different handshake messages, different key schedule, different cipher suites, different resumption mechanism, different privacy protection, and different record padding.” This new remodeled TLS handshake protocol ensures faster TLS connections as well as patches previous security errors TLS 1.2 had.

Especially important in this new version for EAP-TLS is that no information about the underlying peer identity is disclosed. In other words this means that with EAP-TLS 1.3 the certificate of the user is delivered encrypted. In previous versions of EAP-TLS the client certificate was delivered without encryption, providing a possibility of tracking the users. This has been an issue for some users of EAP-TLS discouraging its deployment. To increase the security of your organization, Radiator configuration allows you to enable EAP-TLS 1.3 for devices that support it, while the earlier versions of EAP-TLS are still available for older devices. Radiator AAA Server Software and its modules are actively developed and updated to support state-of-the-art AAA security features. With the most recent Radiator SIM Pack patch, Radiator now supports IMSI Privacy as well - as one of the few AAA software vendors. So, in short, Radiator is committed to stay in the frontlines of all AAA security features at all times.

Would you like to know more?

While the support for TLS v1.3 in some operating systems varies, the Radiator implementation of TLS v1.3 and EAP-TLS is currently available in the testing branch of Radiator, but will be included in the next stable release as well. If ou are interested please test and give us feedback about the implementation.

If you want to know more about Radiator and EAP-TLS 1.3, please do not hesitate to contact our sales team at info(a)radiatorsoftware.com. For full list of Radiator technical features, you can also visit the Radiator AAA Server Software product page.

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Radiator FAQ page out now!

You have asked, and we have answered. In the past years working with Radiator AAA, we have encountered hundreds of interesting questions in support e-mails and calls, RFPs and in other inquiries. We have collected some of the more frequently asked questions onto a FAQ page, which has recently been published. Go check it out at https://faq.radiatorsoftware.com!

What topics are covered?

The FAQ page contains answers to great variety of questions about Radiator AAA Server Software. Currently the FAQ covers our core product, Radiator AAA Server Software. At the first stage, the FAQ page focuses on Radiator AAA Server Software, our core product. We will gradually push updates and expand the FAQ based on feedback and the needs of our audience, to include our modules and general questions about Radiator Software as a company.

What if my question is not in the FAQ?

If you do not find the question that is on your mind on the FAQ page, however, please do not hesitate to contact us via e-mail to info (at) radiatorsoftware.com.

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Introducing Radiator VNF Flex

 As a recent addition to our portfolio, we have been developing Radiator VNF Flex. Radiator VNF Flex is our new approach to NFV solutions. It focuses on managing and scaling Radiator.  Built for flexibility, Radiator VNF Flex is designed to work on top of various virtualisation environments, and is suitable for carriers, CSPs and other customers that need a scalable AAA VNF solution.

Radiator VNF Flex consists of Radiator VNF and Radiator VNF Manager. Radiator VNF Manager makes it possible to deploy and manage multiple Radiator VNFs with different configurations within one virtualisation infrastructure (VI). The architecture of the Radiator VNF Manager is designed so that multiple virtualisation infrastructures can be utilised with Virtualisation Infrastructure (VI) specific Radiator VNF Manager images. 

As all Radiator VNFs are deployed and managed by independent Radiator VNF Manager, and based on Ansible playbooks, Radiator VNF Flex is better equipped to survive Virtualisation Infrastructure or Management and Orchestration (MANO) upgrades with less additional migration, upgrade and testing work.

In the picture below, we present an example deployment for Radiator VNF Flex:


As can be seen from the image, different Radiator VNF instances then connect to customer services, such as log management and visualization systems, external databases and OSS/BSS systems. Also, it should be noted that Radiator VNF Flex does not limit Radiator VNF configurations: any Radiator configuration can be adapted to be a Radiator VNF configuration deployed by Radiator VNF Manager.

The transition process to Radiator VNF Flex is made easy. Radiator VNF Manager makes it easy to quickly deploy Radiator into production without time-consuming integration with general or third-party VNF managers. Own VNF Manager also protects the VNF and its configuration from third-party managers and components. This makes virtualisation infrastructure upgrades easier as Radiator VNF Manager handles management and orchestration of all Radiator VNFs.

To sum up, the key features of Radiator VNF Flex:

  • New Ansible-based AAA solution from Radiator
  • Easier deployment to production without time-consuming integration to third party VNF managers
  • All Radiator AAA configurations and functionalities can be implemented
  • First available on OpenStack, other support based on customer needs
  • Supports Linux distributions based on customer needs 
  • Radiator VNF Manager is provided as a separate virtual image


Would you like to know more about Radiator VNF Flex?

We are currently engaging multiple projects with Radiator VNF Flex. If you are interested in virtualising your AAA solution, please contact us at info(a)radiatorsoftware.com. We are happy to have a discussion about your use case and project, and tell how Radiator VNF Flex would suit your needs.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

More flexibility to authentication with Ut interface and Radiator GBA/BSF Pack

One of the carrier products in our Radiator product line is the Radiator GBA/BSF Pack. The main use case for this product has been providing the authentication for VoLTE supplementary services in carrier networks and Radiator GBA/BSF Pack has been in this use for many years. 

In addition to self-provisioning VoLTE supplementary services (call forwarding, call barring, knocking, etc.) the same GBA/BSF functionalities can be used for proxying authentication to different services as well - such as Rich Communication Services or different services for IoT devices, for example.

The main functionality in GBA/BSF is that after the initial authentication, end user authentication can be proxied directly to Application Specific servers via Ut interface. The basic architecture is shown on the diagram below.


The Ut interface and authentication proxying can also be used for example in secure IoT authentication for different products, such as IoT devices that need to be authorised and authenticated. In this use case as well, the IoT device is supplied with SIM/eSIM that authenticates with carrier HSS. After the initial authentication, the later authentications can be proxied using the Authentication Proxy provided by Radiator GBA/BSF Pack.  

Radiator provides flexibility when working with Ut interface

For Ut interface, there is a wide range of different vendor specific implementations from device manufacturers. This causes differences in user equipment behaviour across vendors.

This is where Radiator GBA/BSF shows its strengths: wide interoperability accommodating different user equipment within the same systems makes our Radiator GBA/BSF easy to integrate to different network environments. Radiator GBA/BSF’s implementation allows tweaking the configuration when unexpected behaviour is encountered and adjust accordingly.

This focus to accommodate multiple vendor-specific implementations is what we have been doing in recent releases of Radiator GBA/BSF Pack - latest release in April 2022: providing more interoperability based on real observed behaviour of the devices. In this development work, the feedback from our live carrier customer has been extremely valuable.

Would you like to know more?

If you would like to know more about Radiator GBA/BSF and how it can be used in your use case, please contact our team at info(a)radiatorsoftware.com


Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Radiator Auth.Fi: Self-service, Passwordless Guest Access

 As a part of our Radiator Auth.Fi - Wi-Fi Authentication Service we provide self-service, passwordless guest access for Wi-Fi networks. With this service you can limit the use of your guest network to those users willing to validate their network access with email address or phone number. Compared to unauthenticated guest networks, the authenticated guest networks reduce network abuse  cases and overuse of network resources.

We have designed the guest network access validation to be easy and secure enough for the end-user without any hassle with passwords or need to reauthenticate. As the network access validation is done as a self-service, no vouchers are provided and needed reducing the work needed to support guest users in accessing the network - the authentication and authorization is connected to the user to the MAC address of the user device.

How does it work?

As seen from the picture below, the authentication and access process follows a few steps, after which the guest can join to the Wi-Fi network automatically - but still as an authenticated user. The steps are as follows:

  1. Guest user connects to the Wi-Fi network operated by your organization
  2. The user device of the guest user notices that authentication is needed before browsing and the user's WWW browser is redirected to the authentication page operated by Radiator Auth.Fi.
  3. Guest user chooses the method for authentication and inserts either email address or telephone number for authentication.
  4. Radiator Auth.Fi service sends the authentication verification message to the guest user to email or SMS messaging service.
  5. Email message (or optionally SMS) containing verification link is sent to the guest user 
  6. Following the verification link guest user verifies contact information and network access is authenticated with Radiator Auth.Fi
  7. Guest user can now use guest Wi-Fi network and the device joins network automatically
  8. Guest user can now use the guest Wi-Fi network for a limited time (for example 24 hours - based on your company policies) without the need for reauthentication. The authorisation of the user device to the network is checked periodically during allowed time.

Would you like to know more?

For more info about Radiator Auth.fi Wi-Fi Authentication Service, please contact our sales team at sales(a)radiatorsoftware.com or via contact form.

We are happy to discuss your use case and how Radiator Auth.fi may suit your needs. Commercially, Radiator Auth.fi is based on a flexible, pay-as-you-go subscription model that allows you scale the commercial model of the service based on your business needs. At the same time, we provide several feature options for the Radiator Auth.fi - this use case of providing guest access being one of them.

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

In-flight Connectivity with Radiator

For many of our customers we have been implementing WiFi roaming for different use cases: for example, carriers offloading traffic from their mobile network to WiFi hotspots or for providing VoWiFi (Voice over WiFi) calling to their customers.

One case for Radiator is to implement in-flight connectivity for airline carriers, providing authentication to onboard WiFi that is connected by other means (such as satellite connection) to the internet.

In this scenario, Radiator provides the necessary interfaces for WiFi roaming when subscribers of mobile operators are using their phones during the flight. With smooth WiFi roaming provided by Radiator AAA Server Software, end user devices can connect automatically to the in-flight WiFi network, and continue their use based on the roaming policy agreements between mobile operators and in-flight network operators.

Some of the benefits for this kind of solution are:

  • For the airline carrier: More value for service as a provider of smoothly connected onboard WiFi as a part of their in-flight services.
  • For the end user: Better user experience when connecting to onboard WiFi.
  • For the mobile operator: New product opportunities for mobile operator roaming with airline onboard WiFi.
  • For the onboard Wi-Fi technology provider: A flexible product with Radiator that provides connectivity to carrier networks via different interfaces.


At the same time, the solution with Radiator AAA server can of course be used in cruise ships and platforms where a smoothly run, commercial onboard WiFi is needed. 

How does it work?

On the technical side, Radiator AAA Server, combined with Radiator SIM Pack, is used to provide EAP-SIM, EAP-AKA and EAP-AKA’ authentication and connectivity to different HSS / HLR systems used by different roaming partner carriers and mobile operators. In these cases, the flexibility of Radiator helps to connect to various different systems needed via multiple interfaces.

With this configuration, in addition to handling the authentication traffic, Radiator AAA Server also proxies the accounting traffic to policy enforcement or traffic monitoring solutions that can then use it to provide access to end users, based on their data plan or subscriber profile. The following diagram shows Radiator as part of the architecture for in-flight connectivity.


Radiator provides EAP-SIM / EAP-AKA / EAP-AKA’ authentication and connecting to roaming partners HSS / HLR. 
 

Would you like to know more?

For commercial contact and more in-depth technical discussion, please do not hesitate to contact our sales team at sales(a)radiatorsotware.com . We are happy to discuss about your requirements, suitable license and configuration assistance needed for your service.