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IWAN Wed: Three reasons why you should consider Cisco WAAS

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 4.47.02 PMThere are a billion reasons (okay, I may be exaggerating but you get my point) why you should choose Cisco WAAS as THE WAN optimization solution for your company.  But today, I want to emphasize the following three:

#1. Not your ordinary WAN optimization

With Cisco WAAS, you’re not just getting WAN optimization but much more.  WAAS is integrated into the industry leading branch routers – the ISRs – and this means the capabilities are not only limited to WAN optimization and application acceleration but to security, application visibility, QoS and much more.  The Cisco Intelligent WAN is an entire package along with WAAS to provide an uncompromised user experience over any connection.  Regardless of the type of connection that particular branch has, WAAS can reduce bandwidth usage and accelerate applications working alongside with Intelligent Path Control, Transport Independence, and Security.

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IWAN Wed: Say “Yes” and “Now” with Akamai Connect

Cisco and Akamai ConnectHas this happened to you? The line of business comes to you one day and says they have this great new idea to train the sales teams.  “Let’s use YouTube videos”, they say.  Or the CMO comes to you and says, “digital signage will increase our revenue if we can promote this next new line of products that is about to launch”.  Or “This new cloud application looks great and it will increase employee productivity!”

But all you could say was ‘no, that’s not possible’.  Not because you didn’t want to enable each of these groups but because 1) you are short of resources or 2) budget is tight or 3) the infrastructure just isn’t ready yet.  Any or all of the above?

With 80% of the workforce in a non-HQ location, enabling these digital services is daunting to IT.  What happens to other business critical applications if the WAN is flooded with YouTube videos?  Digital Signage is a great idea, sure, but how do I distribute those HD videos or images to the stores?  Cloud applications may seem like not much as a user but what happens if all my users are accessing the cloud at the same time? Read More »

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Mo’ Traffic, Mo’ Problems: How to Turbo Charge Business Growth across the WAN

Today’s successful business leaders recognize that mobile apps, immersive web content and high definition video are all essential to elevating customer engagement and empowering employees – not to mention growing revenue and increasing productivity.

But as the Internet of Everything becomes a reality, and introduces seemingly endless opportunities to connect more people, more devices, and more content across a highly distributed network – global Internet traffic is expected to triple by 2017 (Cisco VNI, 2013), and frankly, today’s WAN architecture is beginning to show its age. Ultimately, our customers will need to rethink their current network to accommodate the increase in traffic.

Those deployments will be critical for in-branch revenue growth in verticals like retail – where a connected digital experience for customers and employees can deliver superior performance for a host of cloud applications including eCatalogs, Omni-channel engagement, in store mobile apps, guest Wi-Fi and product demos. This trend also extends to other verticals: Read More »

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IWAN Wed: What is Intelligent WAN?

Imagine that you have several branch offices that are using WAN demanding applications like Salesforce.com, Office 365, Virtual Desktops, Video Teleconferencing and more.  You are using those expensive MPLS/VPN WAN connections as you don’t want to risk it and probably because when you started to work there it was already there and … why mess around with something that is working, right?  Normally I would agree with that but when IT budgets are shrinking and the network needs to step up and support those business critical apps, there is no other way but to innovate.

At any given time your network carries information from LAN to WAN and vice versa, some is important and some is less important. In many cases as a network admin you don’t have the visibility to distinguish between them, so what do you do when those critical apps are starting to act up? Usually the answer will be to buy more WAN bandwidth and that will give the apps and the user experience behind them some breathing space. But all you’re doing is buying time.  Buying time never solves the problem because you will need to treat the symptoms again in a few weeks or months.

However, you can solve the problem and not just treat the symptoms using Cisco Intelligent WAN or IWAN for short.

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Data Center Replication: WAN Optimization vs. Bandwidth Upgrade

During the past years WAN optimization devices were used to optimize end-user traffic mainly. Employers connecting to remote applications can achieve better user experience if a couple of WAN optimization are deployed. Typically web applications, file sharing and email can be well accelerated: end users can increase their productivity with a little investment.

On the other side providers usually offer free bandwidth upgrade during a contract renewal.

So the question are:

  • Can Data Center replication take advantage of WAN optimization?
  • Can a Bandwidth upgrade always supersede WAN optimization?

The answers are, as always: it depends. Read More »

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