First came Frame Relay then came ATM, and still widely in use is MPLS. Now the next big thing is SD-WAN. It stands for Software Defined Wide Area Network. Simply put, its the technology that make it possible to use the Internet as your Private Corporate Network or WAN. The traditional WAN or Wide Area Network is built using private cicruits such as MPLS or T1/E1s that cost a lot.
But more than savings, it's the speed of setting up and making changes with SD-WAN that makes it highly endearing. Everyone has access to good quality Internet. Most SD-WAN solution can run on generic Intel boxes as opposed to purpose built networking hardware such as routers and switches. This translates to easy setup at any location around the globe. You will remember how hard was to interconnect your sites just yesterday when you had to ship networking gear through customs and then order MPLS lines which can take months. With this SD-WAN thing, if you got Internet and a couple of generic Intel boxes, you got SD-WAN.
Here is how it works. SD-WAN creates secure and redundant VPN tunnels (encrypted virtual links) that are intelligently setup and torn down based on Internet traffic conditions at that instant and your application routing priorities. With two ISP lines, SD-WAN can deliver decent quality of service so even your bandwidth hungry apps will run just as well as it did over your MPLS lines. One more game changing benefit is the ease of scaling up and down of your bandwidth needs. Since all the setup is software driven, changes can be done remotely. There is no need for an engineer to come on site. Most SD-WAN providers are offering an "Orchestration Tool" which is like a setup wizard so even non-techies can setup and manage SD-WAN. No need for advanced networking certification courses.
With SD-WAN you can expect to reduce your cost by up to 70% of your current operational cost using traditional networking gear and links. Cost aside, the benefit of making changes on the fly can be a huge benefit to the business.
Call us for advice if you are considering switching to SD-WAN. We can help with determining if there is a business case. If there is, we can also find the right SD-WAN solution for you. We recently assisted a large corporation with SD-WAN transformation.
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