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The enterprise market is currently seeing a massive shift towards Software Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) offerings, yet those tasked with finding the right solution for their business are likely to have their hands full.

SD-WAN is an alternative and more dynamic approach to designing and deploying enterprise WAN solutions that ultimately provide greater network visibility and control. However, it is important to note that SD-WAN is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution, as was the case with Multi-Protocol Label Switching Virtual Private Network (MPLS VPN) technology.

In fact, there is no standard for SD-WAN, but rather just basic guidelines for what an SD-WAN solution should have. This includes orchestration and Zero Touch Provisioning (ZTP); secure VPN overlays, as well as being WAN transport agnostic. Additionally, an SD-WAN solution should also be application aware and include intelligent path selection.

How this is achieved differs between SD-WAN vendors, with each having their particular strengths and weaknesses to consider. The challenge for organisations is finding the correct product that aligns with their business requirements and future strategy.

Key differentiators

However, there are a number of key factors to consider when choosing your SD WAN solution:

Orchestration: Some products are limited to cloud orchestration, while others allow for private or on-premise options that align to your security strategy. It is important to note that with capability and deployment complexity, the configuration and management of the solution also becomes increasingly complex.

Security: Apart from the base requirements for network edge security and secure WAN tunnelling expected from any SD-WAN solution, additional features might be required. This may include providing integrated next-generation firewalling and advanced threat protection, integration with third party appliances, or integration with Secure Access Service Edge providers. Make sure your SD-WAN solution provides the network and traffic segmentation you require through virtual micro segmentation, routing layers and firewall zones.

Traffic Management: Traffic management should be application aware and any SD-WAN product worth its salt should be able to make routing decisions based on applications and an overarching QoS (Quality of Service) profile. How well this is done is what differentiates SD-WAN solutions and will be tied to the business requirements for application performance.

Support: Things do go wrong, and software and hardware can fail. It is important to ensure you have local vendor and service provider support for your chosen product. There are many products that might tick all the boxes required for your business, however, without proper local support these will not be worth the risk.

Why Silver Peak

When best-in-class traffic management and application performance is required, Silver Peak – with a proven foundation in the WAN optimisation and focus on user experience – might just be the right pick for you.

The Silver Peak approach is a bit different, with their SD-WAN architecture and configuration built around business intent, providing granular control. This is based on business requirements per application, application group, application class or network.

These Business Intent Overlays (BIOs) provide intuitive control over everything, from virtual network topology, underlay utilisation and failover to transport mode, path conditioning, optimisation, segmentation, security, and many more for a network wide flow.

Silver Peak also allows for very basic to very complex WAN and traffic management configurations, simplified through orchestration, future proofing your investment to adapt to changing business requirements. 

Silver Peak provides a variety of options for service chaining of third party infrastructure, SASE solutions and cloud onramp services through templates and API integration. Combine the exceptional feature set with local presence and multiple managed service provider support. 

The recent acquisition of Silver Peak by HPE and placement within the Aruba stable provides the SD-WAN product with a far larger footprint, better support and a future filled with exciting possibilities.

Why partner with Intelys

With years of experience in the networking space, Intelys has dug deep into the differentiators of an SD-WAN construct. Being able to identify a specific business case and subsequently address how best to address particular requirements is what makes Intelys a trusted partner in the SD-WAN space.

Intelys has created an accessible model called SNAP (Secure Network Aggregation Point), which makes network transitions easy. SNAP enables complete flexibility and scalability across multiple network providers and seamlessly managed connectivity across varying technologies.

The ability to create, design, manage and implement an end-to-end Aruba solution is what really sets Intelys apart. Having the skills from WAN right to the Edge, is key in understanding a customer’s landscape and creating a solution which enables flexibility, control, visibility and peace of mind.

This post and content is sponsored, written and provided by Intelys.