Will SD-WAN really be the savior?

The only way to prove it is to get validation on how it will perform against your needs and expectations prior to commitment and investment.

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Companies around the globe are overhauling their traditional MPLS networks with newer SD-WAN solutions that promise cost savings, improved security, simplified connectivity and a host of other benefits. Whether a company is considering a complete overhaul of its network to cloud-based SD-WAN or simply reducing bandwidth costs by running cloud-based services, like AWS or Office365, over broadband instead of MPLS, a central question is always how can you ensure a seamless transition without any negative effects on employees or customers?

Those planning, building or updating the network will have some idea of the levels of latency, bandwidth, etc, to expect once they go live. However, given the complexity of most corporate networks, and the number of potential adverse scenarios in which the network could experience over its lifetime, teams often find themselves in the awkward position of testing and optimising their solution on a live system, with all the risks and problems this entails.

Take the guesswork out of migrating to SD-WAN.

Aiming to avoid this perilous situation, network emulators are designed to verify the robustness of new network products or applications. Acting as a network in a box, network emulators such as the Calnex SNE can perfectly mimic the real-world conditions under which a new SD-WAN or hybrid network will need to perform.

Each SD-WAN project will have its own unique objectives and teams need the flexibility to simulate and test many scenarios, whether it be potentially adverse situations like how the network handles disaster recovery or testing SLA conformance by adding impairments such as delay to verify the rerouting of traffic and SLA values.

This live environment testing can enable teams to evaluate how the new network performs benchmarked against their existing network and future performance expectations. They can then make adjustments to applications or software settings under replicated network characteristics to identify optimal performance for different user groups and scenarios.

Validate before commitment.

Moreover, network emulators can verify software and device performance, while also confirming the integrity and availability of the new network architecture, and all before any purchase decisions have been made. This early warning of the SD-WAN suitability allows teams to calculate ROI and confirm the viability of a product prior to making substantial investments, and even explore lower-cost or more performant technologies if expectations are not met.

Many providers are offering to upgrade their customers from legacy WAN networks to SD-WAN. But for some customers the number of unknowns involved in the switch combined with the fact that they may have already made significant investments in their MPLS infrastructure, can make them cautious to take the plunge.

Network emulation can provide the validation required for both providers and customers, enabling providers to prove their solution performance and giving confidence to their customers to make the switch knowing that the benefits promised are true and that SD-WAN really will be their savior.

Anand Ram
VP Marketing

Read more about network emulation in:

Financial Services, SD-WAN, Broadcast, 3G/4G Networks, Datacenter Relocation, Find and Fix Network Issues, Quick Robust Solutions for IT Network Issues

Find out more about the Products here: Calnex SNE

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