Thorough dissection of SD-WAN service

  • intelligent software control replaces the single operation of the device, which is the basic condition for the operation of the SDN. Therefore, the predictability of the design and operation of the Controller is related to the stability of the network operation. Of course, there are a lot of open source and standard-compliant Controllers available on the market at this stage, but they are not as smooth as expected when converted to commercial use. The biggest factor is nothing more than the difficulty of "interface integration". After all, open source software requires users to invest more manpower and technical support in order to gradually show results. Such resource input is often backed by the general business organization's policy of requiring information to be streamlined. In view of this, the choice of solutions that provide comprehensive technical support and high equipment integration is a more economical and cost-effective option. Cisco IWAN is a Cisco pre-integrated WAN architecture that is continually re-validated and tested in a variety of environments to give customers a near-fully controlled SDN experience with minimal technical overhead. Among them, APIC EM is the most critical component of the Cisco IWAN solution. It can be deployed as a hardware appliance or a virtual machine. The controller system supports the Cluster architecture and is more reliable than 1+1 backup. APIC EM has three built-in functional modules, PnP, IWAN, and Path Trace. It is equipped with enterprise-class functions such as smart routing, bandwidth optimization, and dynamic VPN of Cisco ISR 4000 series routers. This allows the entire WAN to be automatically adjusted according to the application service type. Network strategy to achieve a truly intelligent network. APIC EM's three major functional modules can be used to automate deployment, dynamic policy control and tracking monitoring in the following order:

    1. PnP: Plug and Play The
    main purpose of Cisco PnP is two. The first is to shorten the deployment time of remote devices, and the second is to reduce the technical manpower input. At the first point in the deployment of the WAN device, the remote device installer only needs to perform basic power and line installation, and the device can establish a secure connection with APIC EM through DHCP or DNS during the initialization phase, and further load pre-stored in APIC. The operating system and profile on the EM are shown in Figure 1.

    Figure 1 Cisco PnP Operating Procedures

    APIC EM's PnP settings page can specify the network device SerialNumber, Product ID, Image and Config to clearly understand the correspondence between each remotely installed device and the automatic deployment, as shown in Figure 2.

    Figure 2 APIC-EM PnP setting interface

    The IWAN function module in IWAN APIC EM is responsible for the policy control, path selection and architecture formulation of the router. The web policy is adjusted immediately or scheduled by the selection and dragging of the web-based graphical interface. All work is notified by APIC EM. The router is modified and the technical control network is completely involved, and the software control network is completely implemented on the wide area network. (Figure 3) IWAN Dashboard, a quick tour of the current status of the central HubSite and remote Branch Site. If you add a remote site, you can select the appropriate architecture and edit the site IP and VLAN related information by selecting Select Topology in Figure 4.

    Figure 3 Cisco IWAN Dashboard

    Figure 4 Cisco IWAN Architecture Development

    (Figure 5) Application strategy, IWAN can be divided into three major collections according to business importance, and each application in each collection can choose the priority path arbitrarily. When an application's business importance changes, the administrator can directly drag the application to other collections on the application policy page, which can produce effects, eliminating the cumbersome QoS policy formulation and routing control.

    Figure 5. Cisco IWAN Application Strategy

    3. Path Trace
    (Figure 6) Flow Visibility can query the processing status of all data devices from the sender to the receiver, such as Layer 2 switching, Layer 3 routing, Netflow messages, and network device model IP. It's a great overview and is a powerful tool for daily troubleshooting or network optimization.

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