March 14, 2017
by: Jeff Freeman, VP of Technology at Cloud Technologies
Companies that connect all their locations together will utilize a Wide Area Network (WAN) to handle the traffic between sites. The most popular WAN out there today is MPLS, but it does have some competition that will soon be a game changers in the near future.
MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching) is a wide area network that pushes routing to your carrier’s backbone. This allows you to take advantage of a well seasoned network to run all your traffic across. Typically this give you network performance and class of service routing that was designed by a team of network engineers. For large networks in terms of distance of number of sites, MPLS remains the ideal choice.
SD-WAN (Software defined Wide Area Network) is a specific application of software-defined networking (SDN) technology applied to WAN connections, which are used to connect enterprise networks – including branch offices and data centers – over large geographic distances. Many of the new SD-WAN offerings, for example, can be used to improve and secure Internet connectivity, making it more competitive with more expensive legacy WAN technologies such as T-1 or MPLS. In some cases, SD-WAN technology uses Internet broadband connections to replace more expensive solutions.
Ethernet Services or point-to-point links provided by the carrier gives you the flexibility to control your own routing, IP and connectivity throughout the network. It also can provide more bandwidth for less money, but you typically sacrifice expectations for up-time, packet loss & jitter. We see this type of connectivity for networks that have few central sites and most are located within the same foot print as the telco.
When making a decision on what type of WAN you need to deploy for your company you need to understand the different types of WAN technologies. Cloud Technologies can look at all your locations and help you do a comparative analysis on which carrier to use. We also can help you determine which type of WAN would fit your needs for current capacity as well as future growth. Try our Online Quoting Tool to get started on your new WAN.