Silver Peak SD-WAN Aims to Make Branch Routers Unnecessary

Data center

Silver Peak is rolling out major enhancements to its SD-WAN solution.

The Santa Clara, California-based company aims to establish what it calls a “thin branch office” where routers are no longer the center of the infrastructure. Damon Ennis, senior vice president of products at Silver Peak, says the updated EdgeConnect solution lets distributed enterprise “transform router-centric WAN infrastructures to SD-WAN.”

Silver Peak's Damon Ennis“We’re embarking upon a long overdue revolution of the legacy WAN as enterprise network managers reach a boiling point over the rigidity, complexity and escalating costs associated with router-centric architectures,” Ennis said.

The enhancements come in multiple parts. The First-packet iQ Application Classification, which Silver Peak says will give companies visibility and control over cloud-bound applications. Ennis tells Channel Partners that it’s easier to send the applications directly to the Internet instead of routing them through the network to the data center.

“That’s kind of the linchpin use case of what we’re trying to accomplish here, which is giving the customers much more control over the application flow for these Internet-bound applications,” he said.

This leads to secure internet breakout, where the iQ identifies which cloud-bound applications are trusted business apps like AWS, neutral programs like YouTube and Google, or suspicious and potentially malicious apps and sends them either straight to the Internet, a secure web gateway or the firewall.{ad}

Ennis says Silver Peak is able to route the applications in a timely manner, categorizing them just as they are being initiated.

“It’s like taking a train down the track, and it’s coming to a junction. You have to throw the switch right when the engine gets there,” he said. “If you wait until a few cars have passed and then throw the switch, you’re going to be in a lot of trouble.”

Another enhancement is BGP routing interoperability to help SD-WAN and legacy WAN architectures play nice with each other.

Four clients, including Radial, praise the effects of the solution. Silver Peak notes that partners have helped implement the solutions for those respective customers.

“We’ve regained control of our network and can take full advantage of commodity broadband without compromising network or application performance,” said Ray Stegmaier, Radial’s senior director of network operations. “… we’re well on our way toward reducing our monthly MPLS connectivity costs.”

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