By Ed Valentino, Connectivity Solution Architect
I get a lot of questions from network managers asking how to better utilize the bandwidth they have and how to improve performance or add new applications without just adding another circuit. And if I am honest, I get even more questions about how to reduce bandwidth costs. My answer is to choose a connectivity service that can be configured for different uses: multi-service access.
The best thing about talking to companies about multi-service access is showing how they can get their data anywhere they need it to be. With a local access Ethernet connection, companies gain the flexibility to build out virtual services to hundreds of locations. Think of it like an on-ramp and once a business connects their office to a network, like the Unitas integrated network, a circuit can be divided into multiple smaller services with unique bandwidth and performance profiles. Data can be moved from users in offices to the Internet, to private enterprise cloud, to public cloud (like AWS or Microsoft Azure), or SaaS providers. Unitas’ multi-service access connectivity has the flexibility to grow with a company as they evolve and innovate.
What is Multi-Service Access?
Let’s think of multi-service access as the lanes on a highway. Let’s say we have three lanes on this highway with cars going toward three destinations. Typically, most companies spend a lot of money on the first lane of the highway, which is their network for private connectivity. This is what gets all of their sites connected and talking to one another. The second lane of the highway is their Internet service with lots of on-ramps slowing speeds down. Think of the third lane as the restricted fast lane for business-critical applications.
“Connectivity requirements are defined by where people and applications are and the routes data takes.”
For example, a circuit initially purchased for VPN data traffic can be re-configured to support additional services. A company may operate with 60% of their 1 GigE circuit dedicated to VPN data traffic, 10% for VoIP, and another 30% for Internet access. That same company changes to a cloud-based file sharing system and migrates one of their legacy applications to a private cloud environment. With software orchestration, changes can add a Cloud VPN service at 30% and reconfigure the existing VPN service to 20% and Internet to 50%. In traditional telecom, a new circuit install could take 60 to 90 days. By bringing in a multi-service circuit, Unitas can make these changes in a few days to a few weeks, depending on the complexity of the change. The options are endless when it comes to getting companies connected to where they need to go, now and in the future.
Multi-Service Provides End-to-End Visibility and Network Management
Companies have a comfort level with using a ‘tried and true’ MPLS-type network. But MPLS can frustrate companies when it comes to slow service because there is little control over routing and a lack of visibility into how data is being routed. Paying for a priority class of service provides some benefit, but when congestion is at its peak and no data is moving, priority levels have little impact. I am finding that more companies out there today are a lot savvier and want more visibility and control over how data is transported. Unitas network designs offer more control over where their traffic is going, how it’s being routed, and full visibility to reduce frustration.
Unitas utilizes network interface devices (NIDs) to define the network edge and provide end-to-end network monitoring of all connectivity services under management. The deployment of NIDs at the customer edge enables Unitas to provide advanced fault management and service protection of any underlying connectivity service. Telemetry from each device (utilization, performance, events, packet loss, latency, jitter) is captured and relayed to the Unitas analytics engine to be viewed in the Unitas Atlas management platform. Unitas Atlas provides a single view into physical and virtual connectivity services for near real-time visibility and control.
Unlike any other solution, multi-service access provides the efficiencies and performance companies need to operate, no matter what changes the future brings.
Want to continue the conversation about how multi-service access connects your company to the destinations you need? Schedule 30 minutes to talk to Ed.