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SDN blogs: Hybrid WAN the 'killer' SDN use case?

In this week's SDN blogs, a book review, and one analyst says departments have to stop worrying about draining their budgets before year's end.

Gartner research director Andrew Lerner says the increasing adoption of hybrid WANs could very well be the elusive "killer" SDN use case vendors have been waiting for. Hybrid WANs use a combination of access technologies (primarily multiprotocol label switching protocol and Internet) to achieve optimal cost and performance for companies that employ them. The benefits, he writes, are manifold, including reduced WAN costs, simplified and improved management orchestration, improved unified visibility and improved security. In response, vendors like Silver Peak and Nuage Networks, among others, have launched hybrid WAN products that are anchored by SDN overlays.

Check out Lerner's thoughts about the future of hybrid WANs.

Taking a look at the book on Juniper's next-gen switches

Blogger and networking pro Ethan Banks reviews Doug Hanks' Juniper QFX5100 Series: A Comprehensive Guide to Building Next-Generation Networks. The book, which Banks describes as more than simply a guide to the QFX5100 Ethernet switch, gives the Juniper perspective on how to build large data center infrastructures.

Although Banks says the book isn't meant to be a used as a general networking tool, he writes that even coming from a Juniper point of view, it’s still an informative read and "has a specific story to tell."

"Doug writes text expecting that people who actually build and operate networks will read it," Banks writes. "He’s pretty good at anticipating the concerns engineers have and the things they might be curious about. The book is also seasoned liberally with diagrams and code examples."

Overall, Banks writes that if you are using a Juniper-based data center, the book is a quick, worthwhile resource.

Check out Banks' full review and learn more about the book.

Stop punishing departments for unspent funds

Current Analysis analyst Steven Hill expresses his feelings on the ever-popular, end-of-the-year budget spending extravaganza. In his latest entry, Hill explains the common problem of departments that over-budget, then spend like crazy before year's end in fear of having their budgets reduced the following year.

Rather than a department being penalized for not using its entire budget, Hill writes that companies should try to be more flexible. To that end, Hill says, organizations should try and better understand -- and accept -- the ebb and flow of funding throughout the year, thus eliminating wasteful rush spending.

"One of the challenges of running a production environment is the fact that you just never really know how things will end up from year to year," Hill says. "It may become easier as you develop a track record, but the best you can do at budget time is nothing more than an educated guess."

Read Hill’s entire entry and see if you agree with his funding theory.

This was last published in January 2015

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