What Is a Cloud-Integrated Network?
A Cloud-Integrated Network is a platform that allows companies to connect all relevant applications and users everywhere a company operates. It does this by combining the principles of software-defined networking (SDN) and intent-based network (IBN) with the capabilities of network function virtualization (NFV) and advanced telemetry into a single, unified system.
By taking this approach, companies are able to:
- Have more flexibility and control over their network and how users connect.
- Gain full visibility of all network traffic and the overall quality of the experience being delivered.
- Greatly improve the agility, efficiency, scale and performance of their network infrastructure.
Why Companies Need a Cloud-Integrated Network
Networking is changing. In the past, companies designed, built and operated networks as a collection of separate devices (e.g., routers, switches, firewalls, etc.). Because of this, they largely defined network architectures in physical layers.
But the advent of new technologies such as the cloud, server virtualization, the Internet of Things (IoT) and others forced companies to completely rethink their approach. In response, a new model was created—one that separates physical connectivity from network services through virtualization and automation and increases visualization through telemetry and real-time analytics to allow a company’s network to function as a single, cohesive platform.
The Cloud-Integrated Network Journey
Deploying a Cloud-Integrated Network is a process that requires your company to take a series of gradual steps over time. These steps may include:
- Assessing your company’s current IT infrastructure; creating a roadmap for where you want to go.
- Designing your ideal Cloud-Integrated Network architecture.
- Procuring all the devices and tools your company needs.
- Automating your most common and manual tasks.
- Adding a packet broker for real-time performance visibility.
- Deploying an equal-cost multi-path routing (ECMP) fabric and eliminating spanning tree.
- Deploying an overlay network to free your company from hardware.
- Virtualizing problematic network functions.
- Moving from simple network management protocol (SNMP) polling to telemetry.
- Updating to devices that have an API.
Consequently, building a successful Cloud-Integrated Network requires four key areas of expertise:
- Disaggregation and Virtualization — Decoupling services and functions from specific hardware.
- Automation and Orchestration — Leveraging software as a force multiplier to reduce errors, increase output and improve the efficiency of network operations.
- Devices and Connectivity — Procuring, testing, configuring and installing devices, and adding foundational infrastructure such as switches, circuits and cables, if needed.
- Telemetry and Analytics — Optimizing the network, collecting relevant data and visualizing it.
Some of the benefits of having a Cloud-Integrated Network are that it enables your company to:
- Leverage automation to increase your network performance, agility, efficiency and scale.
- Use virtualization and disaggregation to lower capital expenditures.
- Proactively identify and address any network issues.
- Better measure network performance.
Thus, a Cloud-Integrated Network is a great way to ensure consistent performance and connectivity and get a lot more out of your technology investments than you would with a traditional network.
For more information about Cloud-Integrated Networks visit https://myriad360.com/design/cloud-integrated-network/