As organizations adopt public cloud services and unified communications, network architects are looking for affordable ways to improve the performance and the availability of branch office connectivity. The current practice of connecting branch offices to a single MPLS connection leaves the office vulnerable to network outages while backhauling Internet traffic wastes bandwidth and adds latency.
Many organizations are turning to hybrid networks, connecting branch offices to the local internet and the MPLS backbone. Internet connectivity provides low-cost resiliency and access to cloud services, the MPLS backbone provides access to corporate services.
But connecting offices to multiple paths on the same or different networks presents a number of architectural challenges. Traffic loads need to be balanced across the paths to maximize a company’s investment in its WAN services. Latency- or loss-sensitive traffic must be placed on paths the appropriate service quality, which also requires gathering real-time network statistics. Other applications may need to be designated to one path or another, such as for security or cost reasons. Silver Peak addresses all those challenges with its next-generation path selection technology, Dynamic Path Control.
Dynamic Path Control automatically selects the fastest, least congested, or most available path between two locations by monitoring a path's packet loss, latency, and bandwidth in real-time. Network architectures become smarter, more dynamic, allowing them to:
- Prevent problems before they occur by detecting signs of a failing path and proactively switching traffic to a backup path.
- Reduce costs by replacing expensive MPLS connections with aggregated, more affordable Internet links. Dynamic Path Control automatically balances the traffic, maximizing the WAN investment and isolating an erratic connection before it impacts the application.
- Improve availability by adding a secondary connection without wasting its bandwidth.
- Avoid backhauling traffic across the MPLS network by using local internet access. Backhauling traffic wastes bandwidth and degrades the performance of cloud applications, such as Salesforce or Microsoft Office 365.
Path selection options can be made based on
- Lowest latency or loss where Silver Peak dynamically selects the path for a traffic flow based on the lowest loss or latency.
- Balanced where Silver Peak balances traffic flows between the available tunnels based upon optimum bandwidth utilization.
- Manual where a traffic flow is designated for a preferred path.
- Deliver more reliable services by solving network problems before they impact the application.
- Reduce costs by leveraging local Internet access.
- Improve branch availability without wasting network bandwidth.
- Speed up cloud applications by sending traffic across local Internet connections not the corporate backbone.
The major IT initiatives of today – data center consolidation, cloud computing, unified communications, virtualization, and disaster recovery – share a common theme: they all presume a well performing Wide Area Network (WAN).
The potential for cost savings with AWS coupled with its scalability and resiliency makes the platform well suited for data centers network-intensive cloud initiatives, such as application hosting, cloud on-boarding, big data, and data replication.
An overview of Silver Peak's solution for accelerating Amazon Web Services (AWS).