In this short post we discuss how SD WAN brings a number of benefits to the in-life management of a WAN. We show how SD WAN can reduce the administrative burden of changes and how it can improve application troubleshooting.
As with other categories of SD WAN benefit, if you are a large enterprise managing your own WAN then you should see these benefits directly. If you have bought a Managed WAN then it is likely that your service provider will see them. Nonetheless, it is to be hoped that you would enjoy a better service as a result.
SD WAN reduces the administrative burden of change
With a traditional WAN, changes are often performed manually, which can be time consuming and introduce risks.
You may be able to use a Network Configuration Manager to automate this, but this tends to be for simpler changes. If a line of code is different per device, then this makes it difficult to use a configuration manager. You can also have differences in syntax across variations of IOS – so even when a command is the same in theory, you might still have to tweak per model or range.
SD WAN reduces the time needed to evaluate changes, the time taken to write the change and then the time taken to apply the change, especially if this needs to be applied to multiple devices.
Firmware updates with SD WAN will have been tested against the central orchestrator options and therefore there should be less unforeseen issues.
If you want to see some specific cost reduction examples, you can download our ‘SD WAN circuit cost-reduction illustration’
SD WAN helps with application troubleshooting
For effective application troubleshooting the entire application path needs to be understood – from the application to the user, across the LAN and the WAN. SD WAN doesn’t do this and neither does the traditional WAN monitoring facility offered by most Service Providers. SD WAN will just look at router to router but not beyond.
However, SD WAN will do this element better and with more detail than most traditional WAN monitoring systems. This is because SD WAN monitors from a customer’s site to where their applications are based, whereas a remote monitoring system will monitor from the providers platform to the site, or from the providers platform to the where the applications are. SD WAN will do this for each site by default since these are the tunnels that have been set up.
At SAS we pride ourselves on our industry leading, award-winning monitoring platform. While we can monitor site by site and through the LAN to the servers and applications, we recognise that SD WAN makes it easy to set up. So, overall the best solution is both! You need the SD WAN monitoring to understand the granular detail on the WAN and SAS’ monitoring to extend this to the LAN, servers and application to see the entire picture.