How to Choose a SD-WAN Solution
SD-WAN could be your free carpool lane pass to the cloud. By delivering performance, cost savings, management, and flexibility with few to no setbacks, SD-WAN is a revolutionary approach to design and deploy a hybrid wide area network. With many solutions and providers available, are you choosing the right one with the following in mind:
Most vendors will let you test drive their technology with a virtual appliance or an evaluation box. An SD-WAN trial will show you actual cost-savings over other plans, narrow down packages and devices, and if performance is as promised.
Savvy IT professionals may go with a DIY solution by supplying their own x86 servers to host the platform or go with a managed service provider that helps them deploy, configure, and consolidate bills while also providing ongoing maintenance.
The benefits of WAN optimization techniques are clearly complementary to SD-WAN. We see optimization vendors like Riverbed and Silver Peak offering SD-WAN, while some SD-WAN providers offer it as an optional package. It effectively performs deduplication, compression, caching, and traffic shaping, which positively affects the overall performance.
Today, most SD-WAN solutions have a platform with end-to-end visibility. The centralized management platform will provide insights into the usage and availability of your overall network: specific sites, servers, applications, and users. With this information, administrators can make informed policy adjustments, monitor and troubleshoot issues.
One of the challenges of deploying new technology to multiple locations is setup and maintenance. An automated solution that’s designed to reduce errors, complex configurations, and deploy shared policies makes it simpler and less hands-on. Automation drastically reduces the amount of time by allowing discovery of new appliances, streamlining settings, and requiring no local admin involvement.
Security and Policy
Security is of utmost importance for networking. With a wide variety of ways that SD-WAN is deployed and accessible, data can quickly be compromised going over unsecured links. Reports of skyrocketing Ransomware attacks can be prevented with security policies, third-party and cloud security services wherever and whenever they are needed. This effectively extends the WAN perimeter from the cloud to the branch.