Software Defined Wan (SD-WAN or SDWAN) is a specific application of Software Defined Network (SDN) technology used for WAN connections such as Broadband Internet, 4G, LTE, or MPLS. It connects corporate networks, including branches and data centers located in different countries.
As an example, WAN can be used to connect branches to a central corporate network or to connect data centers located in different countries. In the past, WAN connections often used technologies that required special proprietary hardware. SD-WAN, on the other hand, uses the Internet or private cloud networks. The SD-WAN decouples the network from the control plane and decouples the flow control and monitoring functions from the hardware. It is based on four main components:
Enterprise customers require more flexible, open and cloud-based WAN technologies, instead of proprietary or specialized WAN technologies, often consisting of expensive, fixed-circuit or proprietary hardware.
For example, many new software-defined WAN offerings can be used to improve and protect your Internet connection, making it better quality compared to more expensive legacy WAN technologies such as T-1 or MPLS. However, according to Nemertes, “78 percent SD-WAN Deployment Organizations do not intend to completely abandon MPLS from their WAN. ” In some cases, software-defined WAN technology uses broadband Internet connections to replace more expensive technology solutions. Virtualization technology can apply security and virtual private network (VPN) technologies to broadband Internet connections, making them more secure.
A noticeable trend in networking is the growing adoption of multimedia in enterprise networks. Many clouds are a mixture of private and public clouds. Common combinations are multiple public clouds, or public cloud and private cloud – each cloud serves a specific business application. SD-WAN is often integrated into a multi-cloud strategy as it improves connectivity and increases the security of multiple clouds. Its scalability and centralized management of public and private clouds make it easier to manage multiple clouds. Several SD-WAN products encrypt data across all connection points and provide firewall and application protection. Learn more about the benefits of SD-WAN solutions by downloading our free e-book “SD-WAN for Dummies”.