SD-WAN is basically an abbreviation for Software Defined networking in Wide Area Network. SD-WAN is used to simplify both the management and the operation of WAN by means of decoupling or separating networking hardware from the control mechanism. As for idea, it is actually the same on how software defined networking applies virtualization technology for improving not just the operation but also, the data center management.
The key application for SD-WAN is to allow companies develop higher performance wide area networks by utilizing commercially available as well as low cost internet access. As a matter of fact, this has made it possible for business owners to have an alternative in replacing expensive private WAN connection technology be it partial or whole.
WANs let companies to extend their networks as well over longer distances, connecting remote branches both to their data centers and each other and at the same time, delivering applications and services required in effectively carrying out business functions. When companies extend their network to cover broader distances and across multiple networks too, they face various operational challenges. Well, some of these issues are network congestion, packet loss, jitter and occasional service outages.
New technology including VOIP calling, streaming media, video conferencing and virtualized desktops all demand lower latency. The bandwidth requirements are increasing too especially for apps that feature HD vides. It can be difficult and expensive at the same time to expand the capability of WAN. Products of SD-WAN are designed intentionally to be able to address these problems in the network. By enhancing or replacing traditional branch routers through the application of virtualization appliances that control both application level policies as well as offering network overlay, less expensive consumer grade internet functions more of a dedicated circuit.
As a matter of fact, this is simplifying the setup process for the branch personnel. SD-WAN products might be virtual or physical appliances and installed in corporate data centers, bigger offices, remote offices and so forth.
Centralized controller is being used for prioritizing traffic and setting policies. SD-WAN also take into account these said policies and availability of the network bandwidth in terms of routing traffic. Basically, this helps in guaranteeing that the performance of application always meets the SLA or Service Level Agreements.
Several research studies has concluded that for SD-WAN to be efficient and effective, there are 4 things that it should have and these are about providing simple and easy to use interface, support VPNs, do dynamic path selection for load sharing as well as resiliency purposes and lastly, support multiple connections.