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SD WAN: How to choose between DIY and a Managed Service

Introduction

One of the promises made of SD WAN is that it will make our lives easier; it will orchestrate the network, choose routes that give the best performance, distribute patches and updates automatically and replace the command line with a graphical interface. 

People have sometimes been told they can move to SD WAN and manage the network themselves, because SD WAN makes it easy to deploy and manage it. 

Can you move from a managed WAN to a DIY SD WAN?

Here are some thoughts that explore that question, and some questions that will help you decide.

Two SD WAN characteristics particularly influence the choice between Managed vs DIY 

Many of the drivers for choosing between Managed and DIY come from two SD WAN characteristics.   

  1. That SD WAN is an overlay on top of the rest of your network. 
  2. That SD WAN hides complexity but does not completely remove it.