As technology advances, it’s out with the old and in with the new. What that brings is another abbreviated term that everyone knows, but doesn’t understand. WAN (Wide Area Network) is the latest culprit to add a newcomer to it’s group. Welcome SD-WAN (Software-Defined WAN). Labelled the new kid on the WAN-block, it boasts better capabilities at a better cost for those brave enough to get up to speed. But what is it and why should you make the most of it?

SD-WANt To Know More?

SD-Wan is a technology that automatically determines the quickest and most effective route to direct network traffic. This can is back and forth from offices, branches, users and data centres. Rather than controlling this using hardware like WAN of the past, SD-WAN moves as much of this control to the ‘cloud’ to utilise bandwidth capacity.

This can be added to your current WAN connection as a virtual overlay and is best utilised over long distances or where a business has multiple sites. SD-WAN allows you to get the most out of your network by managing it over a central dashboard. So you can have more control and better visibility and ultimately improve your business SLA’s (Service Level Agreements).

Why You Should Get On Board …

By introducing SD-WAN to your business, you can save yourself a whole heap of problems as well as huge costs. It comes with end to end encryption, so you can take a zero-risk approach to your security. It also segments your network so hackers preying on vulnerability will find it harder to access your assets.

As well as the security aspect, you’re simplifying your network with zero-touch deployment, a central provision and one-click insertion, so even those less-tech savvy can take advantage of the benefits of SD-WAN.

Finally, implementing SD-WAN will give you better reliability. This is because it reduces network problems and ensures quicker fixes when they do occur. This improves the end-user experience and builds trust because you’re better equipped to deliver on your promises.


Best SD-Wan Tech

A key player when it comes to SD-Wan is Cisco. Cisco SD-WAN is a cloud-first architecture that separates data and control planes, managed through the Cisco vManage console. You can quickly establish an SD-WAN overlay fabric to connect data centres, branches, campuses, and collocation facilities to improve network speed, security, and efficiency.​

Whether hosted in the cloud or on premises, Cisco vBond and vSmart orchestration and controller platforms authenticate and provision network infrastructure. This verifys that the devices connecting to your SD-WAN are authorised. Once connected, SD -WAN platforms find the best path to bring users closer to the applications they need and handles key exchanges in Cisco’s full-mesh, encrypted delivery.

Cisco SD-WAN supports third-party API integration. This allows for even greater simplicity, customisation, and automation in day-to-day operations. In addition, Cisco SD-WAN includes the common routing protocols that are critical for all enterprise SD-WAN deployments, such as Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), Open Shortest Path First (OSPF), Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (VRRP) and Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6).

Their SD-WAN platforms were awarded the top spot in CRN’s Software-Defined Networking category for 2018 and they carry industry testing and certifications, diverse WAN connectivity, and a broad range of performance options to meet your business needs. Only Cisco bridges networking and security to improve application performance and contain risk, from the branch to the cloud edge.

Not SD-Sure?

In a world full of constantly-changing technology, it can be hard to determine what’s best for you. If you’re not sure whether SD-WAN is right for your business, get in touch with our team who can expertly advise if it’s something you could benefit from.