My name is Simon Bhagat, Sales Engineer at CloudGenix covering the NY area. I joined CloudGenix as the first Sales Engineer a little over four and half years ago. I have seen the SD-WAN market evolve to what it is today. Four years ago the term SD-WAN was just a concept for most customers. Vendors were thinking “should the technology be called SDeWAN” or “should it be called something else”? Organizations knew they had challenges with their existing WAN architectures but were struggling to solve them with existing routers and protocols at the time. Therefore, when I met with customers they would not have a project or any budget allocated specifically for SD-WAN. Even though they liked what they heard from SD-WAN vendors, they had no plans to get there. Today, it’s a radically different environment. Everyone knows exactly what SD-WAN is and have budget allocated. The benefits of SD-WAN are clear and fundamentally enabling new use cases and a better operating environment for customers.
CloudGenix has fundamentally changed the way companies think about the WAN. As the only vendor in the market with a true application-centric fabric, it has upended not only the SD-WAN market, but the WAN market at large. It has been built from the ground up to steer applications in accordance with business-level policies, application SLAs, and security requirements. Other vendors built their products based on packets and protocols, which is really just an evolution of the WAN router. Some vendors pivoted from WAN optimization to SD-WAN because WAN optimization has been dying a slow, painful death – rendered obsolete by SSL, cloud application architectures, and better protocols.
Since the CloudGenix solution was built based on applications, CloudGenix measures and visualizes the actual performance of the application on the network, without using any additional tools. Application visibility, network performance, bandwidth capacity, quality of the bandwidth and user experience along with MOS Score for voice are analytics CloudGenix provide by default just by installing CloudGenix in analytics mode. All of this data is crunched using machine learning – health and performance of not just the networks, but also the applications – to make real-time decisions on how to best handle application data.
Here’s an example: A few months ago a broadcasting company contacted me and said “my users are complaining about network performance. My MPLS link is at 100%. I have a backup Internet circuit that is sitting idle. We have these cameras choking the MPLS link, can you just offload them to our back up circuit?” The customer provided the camera IP addresses, ports, and other relevant details.
I said, let’s install CloudGenix in Analytics mode. It’s non-disruptive, and we can run it for couple of days and see how much bandwidth the cameras are consuming. The customer agreed. It took about five minutes to install CloudGenix in analytics mode, and I told the customer that I would monitor the utilization and get back to him. A day went by and wasn’t seeing the camera application as the heavy hitter. I called the customer and told him, “Your cameras are consuming a little over 1Mbps, which isn’t bad. Interestingly though, I noticed your heavy hitters are Amazon, Netflix, YouTube, Twitter and Akamai”. He could not believe it. We jumped on a WebEx and validated the IP addresses that were using Amazon, Netflix, YouTube, Twitter and Akamai_CDN. He then took that to the business team and they then mentioned that they use social media applications heavily at their stations. They are now a CloudGenix customer.
Today, we are load balancing all applications along multiple transports (MPLS, broadband Internet), applying application-level SLAs across those paths. This was done within minutes and with a few clicks. It was literally the same day that this customer saw the full benefits of the CloudGenix SD-WAN solution, and their business team told him “whatever you did, keep it that way – we can’t survive without it”.