Secure Access Service Edge and SD-WAN: A Quick Overview

The IT industry has been buzzing about SASE (Secure Access Service Edge).  In this post, we are going to focus on a portion of SASE, which is SD-WAN (Software Defined – Wide Area Network).  Let’s take a quick stroll down the SD-WAN memory lane.

SD-WAN has been the gateway for software-defined networks (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) and our WAN’s of the past are indeed being disrupted. Legacy models are not dead yet, but new models are emerging, and they are offering more flexibility than ever before. With these new models, the network is less about the architecture and more about the policies that you put in place. With more and more applications NOT sitting in the corporate data centers, SD-WAN is looking to address some complexities that most corporate networks have.

SD-WAN has four main characteristics

  1. The ability to support multiple connection types, such as MPLS, Internet, 4G LTE, 5G.
  2. The ability to dynamically select the network path, for sharing the load, as well as for resiliency.
  3. A simple interface that is easier to configure and manage.
  4. Support for VPN’s, WAN Optimization, Firewalls, and Web Gateways.

Additional SD-WAN features and benefits

  • Predictable application experience – improved user productivity by optimizing cloud and on-premises application performance.  With analytics, visibility, and control!
  • Right security in the right place – more about SASE in later posts.
  • Simplicity and Automation – for easier deployments and easier maintenance of policies across your sites.
  • Optimized Control – making the network more flexible and giving enterprises more control.

InfographicInfo-Tech Research Group

Deploying SD-WAN

Now as more organizations move in the SD-WAN direction, they are also thinking more and more about security.  In essence, your network becomes the distribution layer for some of the security controls to protect your organization. For SD-WAN decision-making purposes, there are the following deployment options:

  • DIY – working with IT Solution Providers and the SD-WAN providers to design, implement and operate the solution.
  • Telco – outsource to Telco to get circuits with SD-WAN as a Service.
  • Hybrid – working with providers who own backhauls connecting POP’s in addition to facilitating last-mile connectivity.

Regardless of the size and complexity of your environment, the options that are available have complexity, and discussing them with experienced resources is certainly recommended. That’s where Greyson comes in – we can help you reduce network complexity and optimize your network for the future. Interested in learning more about how we can help you? Contact us today.