Managing the Digital Transformation with SD-WAN

The enterprise and service provider WAN landscape is evolving rapidly. SD-WAN technology is changing the economics, reliability, and security of moving application data around the world.

Join SevOne and Viptela in this webinar “Managing the Digital Transformation with SD-WAN” to find out how enterprises and service providers can offer better levels of service at a significantly reduced cost.

In this webinar, you’ll learn about:

  • Why WANs are Migrating to SD-WAN
  • Benefits of embracing the move to a modern-day SD-WAN strategy
  • Managing the transition to SD-WANs
  • Monitoring your SD-WAN in the context of overall service delivery

Download Slides Here


paul kohler
Paul Kohler Viptela Director of Technology Partnerships & Alliances

Two decades of experience spanning alliances, product management, technical marketing, technical support, and system engineering.

brain promes
Brian Promes SevOne Sr. Director of Product Marketing

11+ years of experience spanning product management, sales, network architecture, service provider networks and operations.

arron goldberg
Aaron Goldberg IDG SMS Contributing Editor

Renowned industry and marketing analyst in the information technology industry, having spent 30+ years working with senior executive management at IT vendors.


Moderator: Hello and welcome to our virtual event today. This is Aaron Goldberg contributing editor for IDT and I’ll be your moderator. So let me welcome you to our event where we’re going to focus on managing the digital transformation with SD-WAN.

IT organizations must transform how they operate to meet the new demands of business and help the organization improve its results. The focus is now on software to enable this transformation. The network is one of the focal points for making a successful transformation and the use of SD-WAN is an essential part of the process. The WAN must now deliver far better scalability, better TCO and improve security. And a key part of achieving these goals is to ensure the network operations has the right tools to ensure network visibility.

Today we are fortunate enough to have with us two experts one from Viptela and one from SevOne. Paul Kohler is the Director of Technology Partnerships and Alliances. And Brian Promes is Senior Director Product Marketing from SevOne. Together they bring real world experience from actual deployments and real strategic transformation activity.

Now before we begin I’d like to tell you how you can get more from this event as an attendee. I believe it’s a critical best practice to download a pdf copy of today’s presentation. It’s right there under you downloads button, all you have to do is click on the button and hit download. There are three really important benefits. First it’s a great place to take notes. Second it’s a persistent reminder of this event and something you can refer back to. And third and perhaps most importantly it’s something you can share with your peers in your organization as you undertake your transformation journey.

I’d like to thank our sponsors today Viptela and SevOne for making this even possible, because without them we don’t get a chance to bring you this great information. And with that I’d like to turn over to you Paul

Paul: Thank you Aaron. Yes so let me tell you a little bit about Viptela. We are a private company and we’ve been around for four years. We’ve currently raised $110 million from venture capital companies. It’s by far and away the most in the SD-WAN space, the software defined wide area networking space. Our funding comes from Sequoia, Redline and Northgate with Sequoia leading both A and B rounds.

We have customers and global support in all six continents. We have eight tier-1 service provider carriers and system integrators. And we have 25 Fortune-500 customers. And over 15,000 devices deployed.

We primarily target Fortune-500 and global 200 customers, so large and medium size enterprises. Although we do also serve SMB customers also. We primarily so far have been in the US, Unites States as far as our customer breakdown, but now we’re starting to see good growth in Asia Pac, and also Europe. We distribute our customers throughout various different verticals but primarily we have customers in the retail, in healthcare, and financial segments. So Brian.

Brian: All right well thanks Paul. I’m Brian Promes with SevOne and we are a digital infrastructure management company that is pleased to be working with the folks from Viptela as part of our SevOne Ready Alliance Program. As we deliver solutions to the market place in monitoring a digital infrastructure.

It’s important to understand the interaction between folks running and application inside of a data center as they try to crisscross a corporate network and across a WAN, in say in a branch office as an enterprise. Or as carrier centers are deploying digital infrastructure services that they’re selling back to enterprise customers. As you can see from some of the types of customers that are utilizing SevOne a good mix of both enterprise and carriers that are utilizing SevOne technology, that has resulted a really award winning growth for SevOne as an organization.

But today we’re dealing with a transformation taking place inside both of enterprises and carriers. Whether it’s enterprise delivering services to their own constituents inside of the organization, or to their customers. Or to carriers who are delivering services to enterprises. How networks are being pulled together, how services are being delivered are changing rapidly. Whether it’s the influx of mobile technology and applications on the phone, to the ability for how customers interact with one another in direct commerce. How an organization pulls together their digital infrastructure can bring them levels of extreme competitive advantage in how they deliver their services.

But delivering their services is difficult. We’re running into an environment that has multiple vendors that are rapidly changing technologies. The days of networking storage, and the rack and stack type of approach of building larger and larger data centers is moving into a mode of having a much more hybrid approach around to what is on prem and off prem, how services are delivered across an ever changing infrastructure. But also understanding that the types of information that needs to be made available to both the network infrastructure teams who are delivering the services, and the line of business owners whose businesses rely upon this infrastructure. The ability to be able to construct these infrastructures and monitor them in the context of the business in increasingly important.

But the technologies that the drive digital transformation are widely varied. They are technologies that can run from things like software defining data center activities, to hybrid clouds, various wifi types’ initiatives. But in today’s session we’re going to talk about the transitions taking place in the software defined WAN.

To give you a little more background in the software defined WAN space and in particular [unintelligible 00:06:01], I’d like to turn things back over to Paul and talk a little more about Viptela.

Paul: There are a number of clear reasons why there’s been a big migration to software defined WAN. So let me explain a couple of them or the three main reasons. And if move from left to right on your screen looking first at the left hand column, the first on is that applications are migrating from the data center to the cloud. The traditional model was with client server applications where they were centralized at the enterprise data center. But however now you’ve got software as a service, infrastructure as a service, and platform as a service. Offerings from third parties based on virtualization and with the economies of scale.

So they’re able to offer you say a software as a service application at a much lower price point. And take away a lot of that operational complexity and operational cost. So these days the new enterprise branches are using O365, so office 365, Azure from Microsoft, Salesforce, Amazon and so on, and it’s really dominating the enterprise branches of today. And that’s where everybody’s migrating to.

And then secondly in the middle column you are finding that enterprise are migrating from MPLS to the internet. So MPLS traditionally offered connections with a strict SLA, backed by a strict SLA and then provided services on top of that. However more recently internet connections have become more and more reliable, and more and more affordable. At this point they’re just as reliable as MPLS.

And then when you look at the price point the price point per bit is actually 30 to 50 times depending on where you are, 30 to 50 times more expensive for MPLS when compared to internet. So with SD-WAN you also have IPsec overlay, encryption overlay for all of those different connections, whether it’s internet connection, or LTE, or 4G connection. So you have a secure link.

And then finally on the right hand side the complication or the challenge that enterprise face using the legacy technologies that are typically found at the edge of each of these branches is that the configuration is very complex, and it’s very time consuming to roll out network changes. SD-WAN, software defined WAN is able to simplify that model, simplify the configuration dramatically. And so for these three reasons we’re seeing a big transition and migration towards SD-WAN.

So if we look here at this slide, at the bottom we have a transport independent fabric. It’s basically you’re able to use the IPsec overlay, from SD-WAN, from Viptela interchangeable across whatever the transport is whether it’s broadband, MPLS or cellular connections. And then on top of that we’ve got a delivery platform that has all of the functionality expected from an enterprise level networking solution, so routing, segmentation by VPN, a full quality of service functionality, and also service insertion. For a NFV or VCPE use case we also support that fully.

And then finally application policies at the top of the screen. So SLA’s having application specific SLA’s for each individual application. Traffic engineering, something that’s so commonly associated with MPLS, we’re able to implement those application aware routing policies. And then per segment topologies also.

So how do we do it, what’s the model. Here if you look at the diagram here you’ll see that there are five different branch offices. You have the bottom here small office, branch office, campus. And then at the top of the cloud you’ve got a data center, a couple data centers. What’s used is an overlay network where we have IP set tunnels between all of the sites. In the traditional model the legacy models in the past, what customers would have for each of these branch routers, each of them would have their own individual data plain answer well as plain. With software defined WAN what we’re doing is abstracting the control plain and unifying it in a single controller. So that controller is on the left hand side of the screen if you look where it says controller and management. And that’s where the intelligence is, it’s where the configuration is.

The advantage of that is twofold, one that when you make a change to the configuration it gets passed down to all the branches simultaneously. And then secondly you have one single pane of glass so you can look at your network and know exactly how it’s configured across the board, across all your various different branches. The communication between various different branch routers and then the controller is secure. And then also we have a rest API. Rest API and their full variety of API’s in which we use to communicate with SevOne and any other network management.

And then the next slide I think you are going to cover Brian?

Brian: When working together with Viptela in particular is a case study here with the healthcare company. Fortune-500 healthcare company with over 100 locations. Had some very specific WAN requirements, they needed an SD-WAN along with their existing MPLS broadband network. Where they needed to actually have, I’ll say split tunnel traffic along with centralized security and WAN management. But along with that for them comes this need to find a way to transition to this SD-WAN with levels of [unintelligible 00:11:59] and monitoring. Where they could have a single dashboard that shows off their existing MPLS and their new SD-WAN. But also begin to understand the policies that are being put in place in SD-WAN about when and why the policies are being enforced. But enabled them to not just monitor the MPLS and the SD-WAN but understand the context of this new hybrid WAN infrastructure and the context of the rest of their business. Because their running traffic between data centers and various branch offices, and the need to be able to understand how traffic is flowing across the WAN, the data center, and the branch from both the underlying infrastructure of the system as well as the user experience that’s taking place.

To help pull together this type of capability Viptela’s brought the SD-WAN technology to market and SevOne has brought an SD-WAN solution that is really designed to handle four different types of key use cases. The first is to help customers who are looking at this type of market transition to SD-WAN, to help them transition to it. And have that single dashboard view of both the existing MPLS, broadband networks they have, and now at the same time be able to visualize the health and performance of an SD-WAN.

Second is that you want to be able to validate the policy effectiveness that they have, and be able to understand that user experience in real time. So as utilizing the capabilities of SevOne and the ability to gather metrics, to look at what’s happening on physical elements in the environment to be able to utilize flow technologies like IP6 that’s supported with the Viptela solution. Or actually looking at log activity and understanding tunnel state changes as they take place in real time. As well as overlaying the synthetic testing that can be done with SevOne to understand how users are experiencing that WAN in real time.

Utilizing that combination of the integrated model a metrics, load logs, and end user experience can help give organizations the confidence to know that when changes are taking in the SD-WAN they know when and why it happened. But just as important as that transition and validation is the need to plan for the future growth of the WAN environment and the policies that you want to put in place. As folks embark on SD-WAN the policies that are put in into the system are as good as those who put in into the system are as good as those who put the systems in and the knowledge that they have. And what we see with the market looking in this area is the need to leverage long term data retention that is inside the SevOne platform, to be able to look at WAN performance data to help determine future policies.

And then utilizing this capability and to understand the context of the WAN inside of the overall infrastructure that’s being monitored as traffic transfers from say a data center across the WAN into a branch office, and understand that all in context.

Now to help understand a little more about how the sources are working together and the API’s at Viptela and some of the construction at SevOne, I’ll have Paul walk through the architecture with you.

Paul: So if you look here at the architecture slide, if you look on the left hand side, this is a depiction at the bottom there of all of the various different offices with the branch edge router in each of them. Whether it be a data center, campus, or branch location. And then the links going across MPLS, 4G, LTE, or internet connections in a secure IPsec encrypted overlay. At the top there you see the cloud and the vSmart Controller and vManage, those will be hosted typically either by the managed service provider or a large enterprise, or a Viptela can do that. In terms of who’s actually configuring them typically it will be the enterprise customer who has exclusives access and configuration of them, or in other cases it will be the managed service provider.

Now we have interfaces as mentioned API’s that send the information to the SevOne box. And SevOne is distinguished in that it has the most comprehensive coverage and support for all of the API’s available from Viptela. So we have at the top there from the cloud, from the controller, and vManage. We have API calls, so that would be rest API, or SNMP, and then also Cis log information being fed. And then from the individual edge routers we have SNMP as well as IPFIX, so flow based output being fed to SevOne. SevOne not only has a comprehensive coverage for all the API’s but also it scales very well, it’s highly scalable. And we like that a lot because we have the largest SD-WAN deployments in the world and SevOne is able to support those large instillations.

So Brian.

Brian: As Paul was describing the ways that SevOne and Viptela work together, it really starts with the instrumentation and capabilities from Viptela. And then enabling SevOne to be able to utilize various collections metric flow log and end user experience to create a single dashboard view of an environment. In this single dashboard here we’re looking at the SD-WAN visibility where I can quickly view a variety of different report types. In this dashboard. We’re looking at three different branch offices, but imagine if you are rolling out 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 100 plus different sites, you can build out different layers of dashboards to meet the business visualization that’s required for an organizations.

But as we were talking about earlier about the needs to manage the transition and the needs to plan and understand the context of an overall environment. The visualization that SevOne provides based upon the Viptela API’s can also be expanded upon by looking at the additional capabilities of tapping into a data center or the various branch office activity. So in this slide we’re seeing the capabilities of the SevOne dashboard where I can look at my SD-WAN, I can look at my data center in particular here we’re showing off how we tap directly into the interfaces of things like Cisco ACI they’re running inside of a data center and looking at flow technologies as technologies flow from the data center back across the WAN.

As we look at then how this information becomes available to organizations, it becomes critical that we then understand how end users are experiencing that system. So the other type of dashboard that view again be pulled to a dashboard are things around end user experience and folks understand that how users are utilizing and experiencing the WAN infrastructure from the data center of to the branch.

With that we’d like to move to conclusion. Paul you want to talk a bit about some of the highlights from today the Viptela perspective?

Paul: Yeah sure, thanks Brian. Yes to conclude and summarize from the Viptela standpoint we have with an SD-WAN solution we have a consolidated management interface for hybrid WAN. And hybrid WAN meaning combining MPLS with internet, 4G, LTE. Also we have a zero touch provisioning, ZTP solution. That means that simply when you deploy our box you just simply need to plug it into an Ethernet connection that has internet access at the branch. And then it will pre configure itself and bring itself up. And there’s no need for that individual at the branch to have any kind of routing knowledge, or experience, or education.

Also we have a secure overlay fabric so we have that ubiquitous IPsec encryption tunnels across all of the different lengths. We also have VP segmentation. So you can segment your traffic securely, and that’s particularly popular in the healthcare and financial industries, as well as merger and acquisition use cases. We offer application aware routing for SLA’s based on policy based routing. So for example you can specify that for a given application if the link goes outside of a certain SLA then you can switch it to another link. Yet the other applications can still use that link.

And then finally in summary in the bigger picture we just have solution that’s being built from the ground up that’s targeted specifically at large and medium size enterprises. And it’s enterprise ready, and it’s built by networking and routing experts. So it’s the most scalable, and the most stable SD-WAN solution in the market.

Brian: Of course Paul if you think about the scalability that is deployed within a Viptela solution it becomes key for success as folks transition into that type of environment that they’re able to leverage the instrumentation that’s built into the Viptela platform and create a single visualization dashboard to be able to monitor that existing MPLS WAN and the new SD-WAN at the same time. As we work with customers in this space we discussed today there is a need for that type of single dashboard view with validation of policy enforcement and the ability then to utilize the detailed historical data that comes with SevOne to help plan these future policies that you want to implement into your SD-WAN, and be able to monitor your WAN in the context of the overall service delivery that you have from the data center to the branch.

If you have any questions about the SevOne Viptela solution, we’ve published a joint solution guide that’s available on the SevOne website. And look forward to working with you again in the industry.

Moderator: That’s was excellent. I’d like to thank our speakers today, just a great job by Paul and Brian. But unfortunately it looks like we’ve come to the end of our allotted time for this webcast. I’d also like to thank our sponsors today Viptela and SevOne, appreciate their sponsoring this event so that we can give you this great information. And for those of you in our audience we want to thank you for joining us today. Again don’t forget to download a copy of those slides, it’s under your downloads button, just click there and download a pdf. Some great information that you can share with your peers and also make use of later on.

And we truly appreciate the fact that you make us part of your busy day. For IDT this is Aaron Goldberg signing off.

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