Squeezing Maximum Juice Out of Your Corporate WAN

J. Stradling
J. Stradling

Summary Bullets:

  • Your network service provider should be able to provide applications performance management and WAN optimization.
  • Poor applications performance damages corporate productivity; meanwhile, understanding how applications are performing and behaving should lead to cost savings and a faster network.

Like going to the dentist, IT managers should be encouraging their data network suppliers to work together to conduct regular network performance audits to learn about how the data WAN is running between all connected business locations, including data centres.  Performance on off-net, IPSec-connected sites continues to raise challenges, but all of the major telecom companies, including AT&T, BT, Telefonica Multinational Solutions, Tata Communications, T-Systems, Orange Business Services and Verizon, for example, now support broad ranges of applications performance management and WAN optimization/acceleration tools, which can help considerably to improve applications response times over the available bandwidth.  Typical third-party partners that carriers use for delivering such services include Bluecoat, Cisco, Juniper, Ipanema and Riverbed.  Just to frame what one could be missing: A major European carrier has claimed 20 times faster WAN response and 63% bandwidth reduction following one such consultation.  Applications performance is also evolving rapidly for mobile networks and devices; a handful of telcos are deploying a Gomez (Compuware) platform to assess end-user experience from mobile devices to corporate Web sites and Web applications, whilst Riverbed provides acceleration to mobile users using a ‘Steelhead Mobile’ client.