So, what is SD-WAN?
The short, simple answer is that an SD-WAN stands for Software-Defined Wide Area Network. A wide area network or WAN uses a virtualised service that connects a large network and extends groups of computers across various locations and large geographical distances. Large organisations often use WANs to connect their office networks, with individual offices typically relying on their own local area network or LAN.
However, traditional WAN technology has several limitations, especially regarding reliability and speed. That is where SD-WAN comes in.
How does SD-WAN work?
SD-WAN uses software and connection to a cloud service with in-built intelligence to manage issues such as speed, bottlenecks, latency, resilience, automation, security, and ease of management. Traditional routers have limited scalability, but with SD-WAN, organisations can quickly deploy high-performance WAN services over any network infrastructure. This means the network to be scaled rapidly without worrying about managing multiple vendors or different types of hardware.
The SD component monitors network conditions across all your sites to route traffic through optimal connections. The service will then dynamically route data between available networks. This means that network failures or congestion can be handled quickly with minimal impact on your organisation’s productivity.
The benefits of having SD-WAN
- Improved network performances. SD-WAN can relieve congestion on your network without requiring an overhaul of your existing infrastructure. For example, if latency issues affect your users on a particular link, SD-WAN can temporarily shift traffic to another link with less congestion. If one of your links goes down completely, SD-WAN can automatically reroute traffic through another link until repairs are made. This is the difference between grinding to a complete halt, and an issue that can be solved with minimal disruption.
- Simplicity. This automation aspect frees IT staff to focus on other projects rather than being tied up to continuously monitoring your network. Because SD-WAN allows you to take advantage of real-time monitoring and analytics, there’s no need to engage additional staff members to keep an eye on things. That means, even if you don’t have dedicated IT support, your network can run smoothly with SD-WAN doing the heavy lifting.
- Secured & reliable. SD-WAN deployment can be a game-changer for organisations that are struggling to perform. It securely empowers your remote workers and does not compromise business continuity. It also means that your organisation can better enable the edge to cloud capabilities and leverage the right network infrastructure, while simultaneously transforming business operations. All of which comes without having to compromise on reliability of service or quality.
Like all IT solutions, the best way to determine if it can add value to your business is to speak with an expert in the field. Our engineers can examine your existing system, and make recommendations that will improve performance, reliability, and security.
If you have any questions about your organisation’s network capabilities, and how they might be improved, reach out today.