A software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) separates the network management control of physical network devices from the devices themselves. In other words, you can control routers, switches and other devices from a centralized controller, which enables admins to configure and apply policies across a network for consistent implementation.
An SD-WAN does not replace your wide area network. It acts as an overlay to manage and optimize it. As network complexity continues to grow and cyber threats continue to expand, here’s why you should consider an SD-WAN solution.
Key SD-WAN Advantages
In addition to centralized control, there are several SD-WAN advantages.
If you are still using multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) circuits to connect branch offices, an SD-WAN enables you to integrate lower-cost public internet connections over high-speed fiber networks to lower costs. An SD-WAN allows you to segregate workflow and send traffic over the most cost-effective pathway. While you can still use your MPLS connection or private network for sensitive information, other traffic can be steered to the public internet.
An SD-WAN eliminates much of the need to install and configure hardware at branches or remote locations to route traffic. You can employ a virtual firewall and routers rather than having physical devices at each location.
An SD-WAN can support a large number of sites. The centralized control plane makes it easy to add and support remote locations. For example, you can plug in additional connections at sites without complex reconfigurations.
Scalability has become especially important with today’s remote workforce and the growing number of endpoints being added to networks, such as Internet of Things devices. The growing number of endpoints has become challenging for IT teams to manage. An SD-WAN makes managing complex networks and endpoints easier.
Dynamic Routing, Traffic Prioritization and Performance
An SD-WAN solution can create a more efficient network. Dynamic routing can adapt to real-time network conditions and application requirements. Besides sending traffic through the most efficient link, you can reserve bandwidth for real-time applications requiring lower latency, such as videoconferencing, business phone services or business-critical applications. Load balancing can also help maintain quality-of-service policies and improve overall performance.
Another SD-WAN advantage is that it gives administrators application-level control across the wide area network for greater visibility and more granular control. Real-time performance monitoring makes it easier to identify bottlenecks.
With an SD-WAN, it is easy to integrate multiple connections, including cloud, hybrid cloud, multi-cloud connectivity, and MPLS or Long Term Evolution cellular for redundancy and failover.
An SD-WAN solution with integrated security provides enhanced protection for your network. Combined with a next-generation firewall with unified threat management and antivirus service options, you can create multiple layers of protection across your wide area network. You can apply holistic security policies as well as application-level security.
In a recent survey, more than 80% of IT professionals said they had uncovered unmanaged endpoints on their networks. Extending security across your entire network provides greater protection for all of your endpoints.
Enables Remote Connectivity
An SD-WAN also enables organizations to extend services and network security to remote workers. Employees can securely access business applications and resources, regardless of where they work.
When considering SD-WAN advantages and disadvantages, you should be aware of some limitations. For example, you may need expert help in setting up and configuring your SD-WAN, since it will act as a central controller for your network. Your IT staff may also need some initial training. LOGIX Fiber Networks can implement an SD-WAN solution for your business and provide the resources to manage it efficiently.
Not all SD-WAN solutions are created equally, either. Some applications on the market provide control capabilities without added security protections. With LOGIX SD-WAN Secure, however, you get an integrated security solution, including a next-generation firewall, unified threat management, and antivirus options. You also get:
- Malware protection.
- URL and content filtering.
- An intrusion prevention system.
- A secure web gateway.
An SD-WAN enables micro segmentation across data plans and control plans with granular control down to the application and user level. This helps prevent lateral movement within systems by unauthorized users for greater security, risk management and compliance.
With LOGIX SD-WAN Secure, you’ll enjoy optimized network performance. You get greater visibility into your network at the application and user level, application-aware routing, and policy-based conditional access.
LOGIX Fiber Networks is the largest independent fiber provider in Texas, with more than 300,000 miles of fiber connecting 10,000 businesses, 3,000 enterprise buildings and 100 third-party data centers. LOGIX partners with Versa Networks to deliver reliable, robust SD-WAN solutions for a comprehensive approach to optimize and secure your network.
Call LOGIX today at 281-688-6231, or connect with us online to learn more about our SD-WAN solutions.