The First SD-WAN ‘App Store’

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The incredible power and automation offered by today’s more advanced SD-WAN platforms is transforming how enterprises are building and managing their networks. Operations that were once massive resource-intensive projects for network teams, have now been reduced to mere minutes of work. Need to change how an application operates across 1000+ locations, modify QoS settings across every site in your network or enforce a common security policy simply? Just point and click.

What’s been missing from this incredible transformation is how the power of automation can be extended to ecosystem partners. Today is the day we’re going to change all of that.

Silver Peak has been hard at work building the industry’s broadest SD-WAN partner ecosystem to extend advanced functionality beyond the scope and focus of our core solution. While there are many unified network functions and services available within our Unity EdgeConnect™ SD-WAN edge platform today including WAN optimization, a zone-based firewall and end-to-end segmentation, internet QoS, secure local internet breakout and network analytics – there remains several advanced services customers would like to add to their SD-WAN such as intrusion detection and prevention, antivirus scanning and advanced content filtering and security services. To address these needs, we have been partnering with companies like Zscaler, Palo Alto Networks and Symantec to enable network managers to connect to and use their services easily within our SD-WAN fabric.

While it’s actually very easy to service chain these partners into our fabric today, there remains a manual element that requires network administrators to configure a GRE or IPsec tunnel to the security service of their choice. Once the tunnels are configured, administrators can easily start forwarding traffic. The missing element here is that an SD-WAN is all about eliminating manual operations, nobody wants to configure tunnels across hundreds or thousands of locations to these third-party services, it should be automated. The days of manual network operations are over.

So how do we move from an ecosystem model that requires manual configuration to an ‘App Store’ model that provides administrators with a seamless, fully integrated and automated experience? Today we’re launching our first fully integrated SD-WAN App Store partner, Zscaler.

Silver Peak customers who want to enable Zscaler across their networks can now do so with a few simple mouse clicks within the Silver Peak Unity Orchestrator™ management GUI. Configuring and managing tunnels manually is now a thing of the past. Here is how it works, and how simply Zscaler can be deployed to secure thousands of locations with a single click.

1. Navigate to the Zscaler tab in Orchestrator. Configure your Zscaler account credentials to connect Silver Peak to Zscaler.


2. Add Zscaler to your Internet Breakout policy in overlays. This will direct a subset of internet traffic OR all internet traffic to Zscaler.

fig 2 2018.03.12

3. Watch as Silver Peak directs all EdgeConnect nodes to detect the closest Zscaler ZEN point-of-presence, then automatically configures tunnels for primary and backup, enabling automatic high availability and load balancing of traffic to Zscaler.

fig 3 2018.03.12

4. From this point on Orchestrator will manage all tunnels and traffic being forwarded to Zscaler. Your job is complete!

To put this in perspective, an administrator who may have had to configure tunnels at every location is now enabling connectivity to Zscaler across their entire SD-WAN fabric in just two steps. In addition to that, it’s self-building and self-healing. As new locations are added they are automatically connected and configured with the same policies, and as IP addresses change or closer ZEN nodes become available, tunnels are repaired or recreated. There is nothing left to worry about or manage, the entire process is now automated.

With the Silver Peak self-driving wide area network™ platform and Zscaler Cloud Security Platform, you can deliver faster deployments, optimal performance from applications, and secure SD-WAN connectivity, without compromise. Be sure to watch our interactive demo video to see just how easy it is to configure Zscaler within the Orchestrator GUI.

This type of automation is something that until today has only been available within the Silver Peak SD-WAN fabric. As SD-WAN continues to evolve into a fully unified WAN edge platform, we’re going to see more services added into our SD-WAN App Store extending this automation and integration, ultimately making the job of building networks easier than ever, putting us firmly on the path to deliver the industry’s first self-driving wide area network.

Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.