If vehicles can run on electricity as well as fuel, Why can’t WAN use all WAN transports (MPLS and Broadband) together?
In general, anything composed of two or more elements is defined as Hybrid. Hence, when we term the world as Hybrid, it refers to a world that operates leveraging the best of both the worlds- digital as well as phygital. Typically in the case of WAN, when enterprises use private networks (MPLS) and public networks (Broadband, 4G, etc.) as WAN transport together it is called Hybrid WAN. Since the advent of SD-WAN, enterprises can augment both MPLS and new age broadband – Internet, 4G/3G/5G, DSL, VSAT. While MPLS is used for enterprise applications, broadband is used for Cloud/SaaS/Internet/(and not to forget enterprise apps as well).
According to Gartner analyst Bjarne Munch, “Hybrid is the new normal for next-generation enterprise WAN“. Looking at the majority of enterprises today, who are on their journey towards next-generation network implementation using SD-WAN, it is no surprise why Hybrid WAN is the future.
Making WAN Hybrid is the most common approach enterprises are adapting to survive the cloud onrush. In a Hybrid WAN, one connection is traditional MPLS which connects to the enterprise datacenter. The second connection is a broadband connection to the internet. Enterprises consider Hybrid WAN better than traditional WAN because it offers asymmetrical optimization techniques that use both Internet and MPLS connection.
While this approach is common nowadays, very few organizations are having a technology like ScaleAOn SD-WAN. The hybrid WAN deployment using ScaleAOn SD-WAN offers a number of benefits to enterprises. For example:
- Reduced WAN costs;
- Simplified and improved management orchestration of WAN traffic and devices.
- Improved and unified visibility and monitoring traffic.
- Better security.
Achieving Hybrid WAN with ScaleAOn SD-WAN:
ScaleAOn SD-WAN’s intelligent architecture uses policies to control path selection and configuration from a central controller (CloudStation). It allows traffic to flow seamlessly between links ensuring superior Quality of Experience for end users. At any given point, ScaleAOn SD-WAN monitors the path health by measuring Packet loss, jitter, and latency. It dynamically chooses the best path for the application. Apart from its inbuilt intelligence for dynamic path selection, ScaleAOn SD-WAN provides the capability to fine-tune the Hybrid WAN utilization by allowing users to choose the best path based on enterprise application distribution.
As enterprises today are hybrid in their approach of application deployment- which means there is a mix of on-prem/DC hosted application and Cloud hosted applications, ScaleAOn understands this basic topology and offers the flexibility to define the best path for respective applications. Typically on-prem/DC hosted enterprise apps connectivity from the branch can utilize the MPLS WAN link and Cloud hosted/SaaS applications can utilize the Broadband connectivity. ScaleAOn’s Unified Threat Management portfolio supports the later and helps organizations with Security concerns to overcome the trombone approach of forwarding all traffic to DC before it goes to the SaaS platform serving application (eg- Microsoft Global Network for Office 365).
This approach has proven to reduce the TCO by 60% as compared to traditional MPLS only connectivity. And this is because the hybrid approach emphasizes on utilizing MPLS as required, thereby reducing MPLS cost and broadband for every possible connectivity.