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Has SD-WAN Become a Walled Garden?
In the last year or so, SD-WAN has caught the attention of service providers, with some of them going as far as investing in related startups. At the same time, service providers began to realize that while the technology provides easy-to-deploy solutions that include VNFs, white boxes and a management suite, these solutions are in effect walled gardens. Once an SD-WAN vendor is selected, it is quite impossible to add capabilities (if such capabilities aren’t available from this particular vendor), or to make necessary changes that are not within the scope of a particular solution. In many cases, such SD-WAN packages are offered by the same vendors that offered proprietary equipment that isn’t interoperable with network elements from other suppliers.
Still, SD-WAN provides a great value that shouldn’t be ignored. That’s why RAD’s vCPE Toolbox includes our open vCPE operating system (vCPE-OS) and vSD-WAN software (such as Versa Network’s) that is run as a VNF. These can be uploaded to any white box platform – whether RAD’s or a third-party’s – with the ability to service-chain any additional VNF from any vendor, say a security suite, SBC, or others. The objective is to give service providers full control and flexibility to pick and choose the best of breed VNF that fits the needs of its customers and deployment scenarios. When these needs change, new VNFs can be added or existing ones can be replaced.
SD-WAN releases the network from the chains of dedicated appliances. It should not be stymied by limiting deployments to what a specific vendor has to offer.
To learn more about what I have to say about the issue check out the video below.
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