By Sanjay Uppal, SVP and GM of the VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud BU, VMware
In the critical wake of digital transformation—especially due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation—customers understand the importance of making their companies digital-ready today. In order to guide and enable customers to make this move successfully, the entire IT industry is coming up with different technologies, products and solutions and professional services that address these transformation requirements. One such major initiative is around deployment of cloud.
VMware understands this and built a platform strategy around the Digital Foundation. The 5 key pillars of this digital foundation are:
- Digital Workspace Transformation
- Modern Applications Platform
- End User Computing (EUC)
- Intrinsic Security
- Virtual Cloud Network (VCN)
The pillar of Virtual Cloud Network (VCN) describes the VMware strategy for enabling customer advancements in networking and security. This is where you see VMware’s investment in the NSX portfolio, including AVI Networks—for its load balancing solution and VeloCloud, now part of VMware for its industry-leading SD-WAN solution.
According to VMware’s CEO Pat Gelsinger’s announcement during the strong quarter earnings, he mentioned that one of the focus areas for VMware continues to be SD-WAN. When VMware purchased VeloCloud in 2017, Gelsinger bet that the technology would grow to be a $1 billion business. Today, he is even more confident that VMware SD-WAN™ by VeloCloud®, the industry-leading SD-WAN solution recognized by Gartner for two consecutive years (2019 and 2020), will achieve that goal.
Strategic vision for VMware SD-WAN
VMware SD-WAN is the secure access service edge (SASE) platform that combines industry-leading SD-WAN with comprehensive security that embraces cloud, as well as SaaS. Customers can easily support and scale cloud-based applications and services and enable branch and WAN transformation with VMware SD-WAN and its unique network of clouds service.
VMware SD-WAN delivers operational simplicity. VMware SD-WAN ensures that the customer’s environment and applications are always up and running with the best performance and resiliency, without any disruption to the network traffic flow, like bandwidth congestion. VMware SD-WAN enables the customers to define policies to the various workloads, thereby ensuring a smooth network flow and meeting the SLAs as defined. The environment and the applications can be anywhere—on-premises, cloud (public, private or hybrid), any branch office or end user point.
The VMware SD-WAN strategic vision revolves around 5 pillars:
- Edge compute expansion
- Intrinsic security by supporting technologies such as SASE, ZTNA, along with other security features
- Multi-cloud interconnect
- Self-healing LAN and WAN
- Telco/ 5G intelligence
The strategy now is to extend the SD-WAN ability beyond the data center and edge environments i.e. from client to cloud to containers. The end points or the boundaries are expanding. The remote work or work from home conditions due to COVID are the perfect example of moving beyond the edge. This scenario increases the need to extend support for WiFi, 5G, and Telco, as well as to enable and adapt to multi-cloud environments. The overall goal is to ensure a secure environment—no matter what the strategy is. VMware SD-WAN recently delivered its industry-leading zero trust network access (ZTNA) service, VMware SD-WAN Zero Trust Service, that enables the enterprise users with consistent, optimal and secure cloud application access through a network of worldwide service nodes.
The proof of the winning solution with VMware SD-WAN is the number of customers that have actually deployed the edges at their branch offices—today that number is more than 250,000 deployments. Recently our customer, MD Anderson, had this to say,
“VMware SD-WAN is a godsend. It was incredibly easy to set up and seamless to use. It’s probably saved me about an hour of time today alone in time wasted logging into the VPN, let alone the issues I’ve had getting booted from the network, emails getting stuck in the outbox, and issues with WebEx. Thanks very much again for providing this invaluable tool. I think as we consider remote work for our division this item should be considered mandatory for optimal business performance.” -Tim Swenson, Chief of Staff – Office of the Division Head, MD Anderson.