What is SD WAN?

branch-office-meeting-tableSD WAN stands for Software Defined Wide area networking. SD WAN allows multi-site businesses to leverage hybrid network solutions without sacrificing the performance and reliability of their MPLS network at a lower cost. SD WAN allows you to dynamically route traffic across a variety of different network technologies such as DSL, Cable, and Fiber enabling businesses to take advantage of lower cost data links into their network, while quality of service sensitive traffic such as voice can still be routed over private MPLS links as needed.

SD WAN is a hot topic in recent years because it helps solve a common problem all business IT managers face… Cost, Complexity, Flexibility and Performance. By allowing business to incorporate lower cost links such as broadband into the corporate network SD WAN can help you increase your bandwidth while also managing cost. MPLS in some areas can be expensive to upgrade. SD WAN allows you to connect multiple transport links at once into a single box and increase bandwidth to those remote areas using lower cost broadband while maintaining lower bandwidth MPLS for QOS sensitive traffic.


By replacing traditional branch routers with appliances that assess and utilize different transport technologies flexibility is achieved from the ability to deploy and upgrade branch offices quickly using any provider and bonding or adding redundancy for bandwidth needs. Broadband often installs within a week's time where fiber solutions can take months.


Complexity is reduced as routing and changes are made in real time from the cloud based controller rather than onsite at a branch office. With VPNs an IT manager has to make changes at the local branch and manage several firewalls, with SD WAN he can manage branch offices from cloud centralized control and administration for the entire WAN. Policies can be created by business managers and published throughout the organization. Dashboard monitors latency and reliability of transport mechanisms and applications.


Routing can occur dynamically based on state of the transport connections and is automated. The SD-WAN software evaluates transport availability and performance metrics, and chooses the best WAN path for users, applications, and customers.


Hybrid connectivity and SD-WAN solutions are the best answer for those who want to improve bandwidth to remote branches where fiber is expensive. SD WAN can improve your organization with secure, high-performance transport and necessary CPE surrounded by highly-skilled operational support and 24/7 self-serve management and reporting.

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