VMware NSX SD-WAN by VeloCloud
is VMware's new aquired SD-WAN solution. In December 2017 the aquisition from VeloCloud was closed and now it's a regular VMware product in a very innovative market, competing with Cisco's Viptela (iWAN) and Versa Networks.
What is SD-WAN?
Officially is Software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) either a part of the Telcos/SPs NFV (Network Function Virtualization) offering with vEPC, vIMS, vCPE and SD-WAN, where VMware has a prefect support with "VMware vCloud NFV". But with the integration of VeloCloud the architecture of Enterprise SD-WAN will be addressed. In the past WAN (Wide Area Network) consisted out of Frame Relay, ATM or Leased Lines. To back-up the connectivity between branches and the central Datacenter dial-up, ISDN or GSM was used. Later the Internet worked as a "last resort" connectivity. But over the years, with higher bandwidth and better availability most customers changed to MPLS with an Internet backup. This expensive and active/passive approach had problems with scale, reliability and security. Different vendors developed their proprietary SD-WAN solution for a hybrid use of MPLS with Internet connectivity. Central controllers in the Datacenter monitored bandwidth, reliability, delay and jitter of the connections and switched the traffic steering in case a SLA was violated. These solutions had 3 major problems with ROI, application support and performance/scale.
Today many startups and established vendors are on the market for SD-WAN. Cisco started with iWAN a couple of years ago and integrated the SD-WAN features in the core- and branch-routers. Other companies like Meraki, Silver Peak and other developed cloud-based WAN offerings. Lately Cisco acquired Viptela and is now changing to the cloud-architecture too. The integration into standard WAN equipment is comment and predicted by Gartner: "SD-WANs to replace routers. A single router, good for just one campus, can cost thousands of dollars. SD-WAN uses simpler hardware yet provides flexibility and reliability at an unbeatable price." So the SD-WAN goes virtual and provides cloud based service control and SW-WAN VMs (Virtual Machines) in the branch to deliver zero touch provisioning, cloud based services, real time support and multi-tenancy. This means SD-WAN is now changed to Cloud-Delivered SD-WAN.
VeloCloud offers three solutions: "VeloCloud for Enterprise", "VeloCloud for Large Enterprises" and "VeloCloud for Service Providers". More than 1,000 enterprise customers and 50 service providers already use SD-WAN solution. VeloCloud fits IMHO perfectly into the VMware's strategy as we have to deliver new architectures to support end2end deployments for branches with virtual machines, containers or IoT edge devices. This is true for small and large enterprises, where "Zero Touch" becomes an important TCO factor, when it comes to installation, configuration, operation and maintenance. For SPs the simplified delivery and deployment of virtual network functions (VNF) is important. Security and scale are other important factors, which will be address with VeloCloud.