Aruba DHCP Option 60

Aruba DHCP Option 60 (Vendor Class Identifier)

Almost all vendors implement the DHCP Option 60 RFC(2132) Vendor Class Identifier in their own way. The DHCP Option 60 is a string that the Access Point includes in the DHCP Discovery packet to the DHCP Server.

A DHCP server can be configured to filter on received option 60 string values and forward standard or vendor specific options (Option 43) in DHCP offer and acknowledgement packets.  Filtering using option 60 allows different types of devices that require vendor-specific information to co-exist in a common broadcast domain. (Having Cisco and Aruba AP in the same subnet, the DHCP Server should be configured with DHCP Option 43 and 60 for each Vendor).

If you do not specify an option 60 for some scope, the content of option 43 is returned to any DHCP client asking for an IP address in that subnet. In general we should try to define it in the DHCP scope as it makes sure that option 43 is returned only to APs and not other clients but it also depends upon the type of the DHCP server. For example Cisco IOS based DHCP scopes allow only one option 60 string (VCI) per scope , So you may not want to use it if you have different Vendor APs in the same subnet using IOS based DHCP.There is no such limitation on the Windows Server and hence the correct procedure is to define Option 60 for each Vendor.

The string value that is forwarded to the DHCP server is dependent on the Aruba Access Points mode.

 Aruba Access Points also requires specific option 60 values to be returned in DHCP offer and acknowledgement packets for vendor specific information to be considered. The expected option 60 value being dependent on the mode of the Access Points. If the expected option 60 value is not present in the DHCP offer or acknowledgement packet, any supplied vendor specific information is ignored. 

Vendor Specific Information (Option 43):

Aruba Access Points support vendor-specific information that can be provided in offer and acknowledgement packets. The type of vendor-specific information that is supported by an Aruba Access Point is dependent on the mode. For example Instant mode Access Points can be supplied with HTTP Proxy Server (Option 148) and/or (Option 43) AirWave Server information while Campus mode or Unified Access Points can be supplied Mobility Controller information. 

AirWave Server Discovery For IAP:

HTTP Proxy For IAP:

******Please note that both the username and password are forwarded to Instant mode Access Points in offers and acknowledgements in clear text. ******

The HTTP Proxy option can be used with Instant mode Access Points that are managed by AirWave or Central. When managed by AirWave, the HTTP Proxy option can be combined with the AirWave Server Discovery option. 

Controller Discovery For Campus/Unified AP:

Lets see the DHCP Scope Configuration for IAP and Campus/Unified APs.

Windows DHCP Server Config for Unified/Campus AP:

Windows DHCP Server Config for IAP AirWave:

Windows DHCP Server Config for IAP Http Proxy:

DHCP Server Config On Aruba OS Switch:

DHCP Server Config On Cisco Switch:

Happy Reading…..