In today’s digital business environment, there is a need for greater granularity of data flows. SD-WAN perfectly supports this need by providing better traffic management for different applications and situations.
This allows enterprises to prioritize mission-critical apps and use the best transport method, such as MPLS or the Internet. In addition, it offers the ability to dynamically select the best route based on network policies set by admins.
Traditional WANs can be challenging to manage as new applications, and cloud services are added to the network. These traffic demands can cause bandwidth congestion and introduce latency to applications running over the WAN.
As the number of remote locations increases and customer-facing digital experiences grow, SD-WAN can help ensure consistent performance across all endpoints. The technology can automatically aggregate incoming traffic and steer it over the most appropriate path according to application, user, time, location, and transport.
Compared to MPLS, which is usually more expensive and requires costly infrastructure upgrades, SD-WAN is more flexible and easy to deploy. In addition, it can be deployed at remote branches that only have broadband or mobile Internet connections.
With SD-WAN, the control plane is independent of the data plan and can be shaped dynamically to meet network requirements. This flexibility can reduce costs and improve bandwidth utilization and efficiency. It can also reduce single points of failure, simplify network management, and increase security.
SD-WAN network automation is critical to simplifying SD-WAN deployments, reducing the time and cost of managing network changes. It eliminates the need for manual, granular research into WAN traffic and configurations while ensuring SD-WAN arrangements always comply with evolving security standards.
The next step in automation is to enable a self-learning network that continuously monitors, adapts, and responds to network conditions. This helps ensure optimal application performance, including congestion, brownouts, and transport outage conditions, allowing users to connect to their applications without IT intervention.
This technology can also be layered with cloud-based AI to provide greater intelligence and control over the underlying network, improving data security. With AI and ML, it is possible to automate many on-premises and cloud network tasks currently performed by humans while balancing various workloads in real-time.
As businesses adopt SD-WAN for improved WAN connectivity, the network edge is often a key area of concern. The security of this edge network is vital to the success of SD-WAN networks in the future, as it’s where most enterprises’ remote workers connect to cloud platforms, data centers, and corporate offices.
To secure the SD-WAN network, enterprises need a more holistic approach than just a VPN service. This requires a business-driven system that provides end-to-end security segmentation across the LAN, WAN, data center, and cloud.
This means a centralized security policy can be deployed across all branches simultaneously rather than deploying policies on a device-by-device basis. The centrally configured security policy can be more robust, providing far better control over how applications are accessed and secured.
SASE – pronounced “sassy” – addresses these issues by converging networking and security functions in cloud-native software running on the SASE provider’s points of presence (PoPs). This eliminates the challenge for branch locations to run networking and security stacks. It also provides superior network performance for a wide range of use cases.
Software-defined vast area network (SD-WAN) solutions provide the flexibility to quickly add branches, offices, and remote workers with secure connections to business data. These flexible network architectures are easier to deploy, change and manage than traditional hardware-based WAN solutions.
SD-WAN is a critical technology that can help businesses with digital transformation and cloud migrations. It can optimize cloud access, ensuring a consistent connection for applications and users.
It allows IT to control traffic at the edge with a single interface, enabling deeper visibility of all branches, headquarters, and the cloud. It also offers greater granularity in bandwidth prioritization and application routing.
For instance, if a business wants to prioritize video conferencing over email, it can use dynamic path steering and forward error correction to ensure that the best possible route is used for each application.
It can also connect multiple network transport types to enable redundancy. For example, if one path fails, SD-WAN automatically switches to the other to deliver redundancy and high reliability. This improves application performance and prevents downtime.
Businesses deploying more cloud applications need a better way to handle increasing data traffic. They’re turning to SD-WAN for its ability to scale, optimize network connections, and reduce operational costs.
As companies become increasingly mobile and distributed, they’ll rely more on internet bandwidth to connect their offices and remote users to cloud services. To ensure this happens, they must ensure they have a high-quality connection.
This will require more granular control over the WAN, which SD-WAN provides. It uses policy-based routing to forward and route traffic in real-time based on defined policies.
These policies can be adjusted in the event of a change, such as the need to support cloud services so that the best possible connection is automatically established.
Redundancy is also built into the SD-WAN architecture through multiple transport types. This can include MPLS, broadband internet, and cellular networks.