June 18, 2019
Here is something really cool that happened with a client a few months ago. Last year, we had completed a complete revamp of their old MPLS and moved them to a new SD/WAN architecture. With 18 sites, this was a nice sized project and I am pleased to say it was a smooth implementation.
To further set the stage properly, this is a long-time client and we enjoy a very informal working relationship and so we often throw friendly digs at each other from time to time. Recently at one of our follow-up meetings my contact jabbed at me about the bandwidth at one of their sites being maxed out. Specifically, he was teasing me that I didn’t design enough bandwidth there, as the site was crawling. I began to put together some upgrade plans.
I then thought about this for a moment and things (the amount of users, applications, etc) weren’t adding up. I asked him if he had checked the SD/WAN dashboard for the site. He looked at me for a moment, then I watched as he realized what I was referring to: He actually had visibility now to see what was happening rather than guessing! A few clicks later, and he could see that an employee was streaming movies to his phone (hopefully while on break) and was consuming 80% of his bandwidth there. A few more clicks, and that users traffic was shaped appropriately and they were back in business.
It was a meaningful reminder to me that more speed (and its expense) is not always the answer, and having the visibility and control SD/WAN provides has such an impact. It truly has been a revolution in the industry.