5 Advantages and Disadvantages of SD-WAN | Drawbacks & Benefits of SD-WAN

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6.18.2021

5 Advantages and Disadvantages of SD-WAN | Drawbacks & Benefits of SD-WAN


5 Advantages and Disadvantages of SD-WAN | Drawbacks & Benefits of SD-WAN

What is SD-WAN ?


Software Defined-Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) is a kind of technology which routes traffic across different locations. It wan mainly introduced to overcome the backhauling that many traditional networks face. 


How does SD-WAN work ?

In this network, the functionality of each device is separated into data panel and control panel. Thus, it is easy to manage all the transport mediums. For the purpose of distribution, they will be using Software Defined Networking (SDN) principles.


Even though SD-WAN offers many benefits to the networking environment, it is not without flaws. Similar to other networks, SD-WAN has its own strength and weaknesses. Before adopting to this technology, it is important to carefully weigh the advantages and disadvantages. 

In this article, I will be illustrating about 5 Advantages and Disadvantages of SD-WAN | Drawbacks &Benefits of SD-WAN. Through this post, you will know the pros and cons of using SD-WAN.

Let's get started,


Advantages of SD-WAN


1. Cost

Users always enjoy long term cost savings when using SD-WAN. Compared to a MPLS deployment, SD-WAN allows cost savings of almost 50%. Except for critical data, all the low priority tasks can be assigned to expensive links. And for the important tasks, expensive connectivity links can be used.


2. Performance

Whatever application that is used in SD-WAN, it is able to improve its performance. Each of the network traffic works differently. All the traffic those are critical and real time can be automatically routed to links with higher bandwidth. This ensures that there is less latency issues and packet loss which eventually leads to improved application performance.


3. Complexity

Most of the networks are subjected to additional layers through the process of digital transformation. This often leads to poor network performance. SD-WAN is able to reduce this concept by simplifying the infrastructure. Moreover, it is necessary to consider looking for the right SD-WAN service provider with less capacity.


4. Reliability

SD-WAN comes with various transport mediums all which can provide alternate paths. For an example, if the SD-WAN is two or more mediums. Imagine Fiber, DSL and LTE. In case of a failure, SD-WAN is able to use other two mediums. 


5. Remote Access

One of the reasons why many companies prefer adopting to SD-WAN is its cloud access. Even if a branch is located remote, the employees can still access cloud applications. This too with improved application performance. When there is business critical applications, the traffic can be directed through the data center. 


Disadvantages of SD-WAN


1. Security

SD-WAN lacks when it comes to on-site security features. Although SD-WANs are equipped with some standards and methods for security, still it is not adequate enough. Therefore, a data breach in one single machine could affect the entire organization.


2. Adaptation

Businesses have a problem adapting to SD-WAN solutions. The existing staffs may find it difficult to understand this technology which rises the need to have skilled staffs. Now this can be expensive for companies with low budget. This is one of the reasons why business are still depending on old connections.


3. Interference

Not all the SD-WAN solutions are able to support WAN routers. If a SD-WAN configuration is used in a WAN router, its ethernet connection will probably interfere with WAN architecture. For preventing this, it is advisable to use methods like time-division multiplexing.


4. Errors

All the units and connections are centralized in SD-WAN. As a result, having a SD-WAN always creates new errors. In some instances, small errors resulting from incorrect configuration can cause major errors. Besides that, SD-WANs also experience jitters and packet loss.


5. Technical Issues

On default, routers are equipped with the functionality to work without  updates. But for routers those with SD-WAN configuration requires regular firmware updates. 

If the updates are not provided, the routers may eventually experience failures or even stop working. These updates make sure that the routers are bug free and their functions are fastened.

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