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Example: Setting Up 802.1X for Single-Supplicant or Multiple-Supplicant Configurations on an EX Series Switch

802.1x port-based network access control (PNAC) authentication on EX Series switches provides three types of authentication to meet the access needs of your enterprise LAN:

  • Authenticate the first end device (supplicant) on an authenticator port, and allow all other end devices also connecting to have access to the LAN.

  • Authenticate only one end device on an authenticator port at one time.

  • Authenticate multiple end devices on an authenticator port. Multiple supplicant mode is used in VoIP configurations.

This example configures an EX Series switch to use IEEE 802.1X to authenticate end devices that use three different administrative modes.


This example uses the following software and hardware components:


This example also applies to QFX5100 switches.

  • Junos OS Release 9.0 or later for EX Series switches

  • One EX Series switch acting as an authenticator port access entity (PAE). The ports on the authenticator PAE form a control gate that blocks all traffic to and from end devices until they are authenticated.

  • One RADIUS authentication server that supports 802.1X. The authentication server acts as the backend database and contains credential information for end devices (supplicants) that have permission to connect to the network.

Before you configure the ports for 802.1X authentication, be sure you have:

Overview and Topology

As shown in Figure 1, the topology contains an EX4200 access switch connected to the authentication server on port ge-0/0/10. Interfaces ge-0/0/8, ge-0/0/9, and ge-0/0/11 will be configured for three different administrative modes.


This figure also applies to QFX5100 switches.


Figure 1: Topology for Configuring Supplicant ModesTopology for Configuring Supplicant Modes
Table 1: Components of the Supplicant Mode Configuration Topology
Property Settings

Switch hardware

EX4200 switch, 24 Gigabit Ethernet ports: 8 PoE ports (ge-0/0/0 through ge-0/0/7) and 16 non-PoE ports (ge-0/0/8 through ge-0/0/23)

Connections to Avaya phones—with integrated hub, to connect phone and desktop PC to a single port; (requires PoE)

ge-0/0/8, ge-0/0/9, and ge-0/0/11

To configure the administrative modes to support supplicants in different areas of the Enterprise network:

  • Configure access port ge-0/0/8 for single supplicant mode authentication.

  • Configure access port ge-0/0/9 for single secure supplicant mode authentication.

  • Configure access port ge-0/0/11 for multiple supplicant mode authentication.

Single supplicant mode authenticates only the first end device that connects to an authenticator port. All other end devices connecting to the authenticator port after the first has connected successfully, whether they are 802.1X-enabled or not, are permitted access to the port without further authentication. If the first authenticated end device logs out, all other end devices are locked out until an end device authenticates.

Single-secure supplicant mode authenticates only one end device to connect to an authenticator port. No other end device can connect to the authenticator port until the first logs out.

Multiple supplicant mode authenticates multiple end devices individually on one authenticator port. If you configure a maximum number of devices that can be connected to a port through port security, the lesser of the configured values is used to determine the maximum number of end devices allowed per port.

Configuration of 802.1X to Support Multiple Supplicant Modes


CLI Quick Configuration

To quickly configure the ports with different 802.1X authentication modes, copy the following commands and paste them into the switch terminal window:

Step-by-Step Procedure

Configure the administrative mode on the interfaces:

  1. Configure the supplicant mode as single on interface ge-0/0/8:

  2. Configure the supplicant mode as single secure on interface ge-0/0/9:

  3. Configure multiple supplicant mode on interface ge-0/0/11:


Check the results of the configuration:


To confirm that the configuration is working properly, perform these tasks:

Verifying the 802.1X Configuration


Verify the 802.1X configuration on interfaces ge-0/0/8, ge-0/0/9, and ge-0/0/11.


Verify the 802.1X configuration by issuing the operational mode command show dot1x interface:


The Supplicant mode output field displays the configured administrative mode for each interface. Interface ge-0/0/8.0 displays Single supplicant mode. Interface ge-0/0/9.0 displays Single-Secure supplicant mode. Interface ge-0/0/11.0 displays Multiple supplicant mode.