Talari Adds Firewall, Features to SD-WAN Solution

Publisher�s Outlook

Talari Adds Firewall, Features to SD-WAN Solution

By Rich Tehrani, Group Editor-in-Chief, TMC  |  November 02, 2016

SD-WAN is another one of those growth areas in tech that often goes unnoticed. Some time back I went to visit Talari to learn about its solutions in the space. This was before the term was called SD-WAN. I named the company one to watch in 2015.

Recently in Cloud Computing Magazine, my colleague Peter Radizeski wrote that cloud isn’t killing the hardware business. He went on to explain:

“SDN has made some gear go away; but it also means different hardware has to be purchased and deployed. SD-WAN will change the customer premises equipment as more of it will look like a white box appliance whose functionality is controlled by the service provider. Again, different hardware and functions are being deployed, but it is still hardware.

“Those managed services that will be deployed with SD-WAN are going to make network operation centers important again,” Radizeski continued. “This is just another example of data center at the middle of the latest IT trend.”

In other words, SD-WAN continues to be a winner as there is a shift to cloud. There are many reasons for this, and Cisco’s (News - Alert) Kailem Anderson in a video with me spelled out a few of them:

• Oversubscribed MPLS circuits in the Enterprise: Estimates indicate that enterprise WAN utilization is typically in the 30 to 40 percent range, this resulting in severe circuit wastage.

• Traffic Bursts: Short bursts of intense traffic can degrade the performance for everyone.

• A Silo-Based Approach to Addressing WAN Management: Solutions such as WAN optimization, application delivery controller, routers, and security devices are widely deployed today but only solve part of the problem.

• Management Silos: Historically, different groups perform all of the management functions separately, such as visibility, performance, monitoring, optimization, and analytics. This can lead to long troubleshooting times and inefficient capacity planning.

Another colleague of mine, Maurice Nagle, wrote on the TMCnet SD-WAN Resource online community that IDC (News - Alert) projects the market will grow from its $225 million valuation in 2015 to $6 billion by 2020. That’s staggering growth.

It’s for this reason many companies are getting aggressive. EarthLink, for example, recently entered the space. Vonage (News - Alert) is in the space and getting aggressive selling its solution.

One of the first companies I’ve known in the space, Talari is also looking to grow more rapidly by introducing new solutions. Specifically, the newly released Adaptive Private Networking 5.2 and Aware (News - Alert) 2.2 management software deliver an easy and flexible way for enterprises to deploy a Talari branch simplification solution.

Notice the terminology – the SD-WAN solution has gone from a fixed-function device to one that helps simplify your branch office.

I had an hour-long interview with Michele Hayes, Neil Abogado, and Alex Ratcliffe at Talari to learn more.

They explained that the APN 5.2 extends the existing SD-WAN, routing, and VPN capabilities to now include a stateful firewall, NAT, DHCP server, enhanced DHCP relay functions, and adaptive bandwidth discovery. The goal, of course, is to consolidate various boxes into one to reduce device sprawl.

Talari Aware is the company’s centralized management solution, and its latest release, 2.2, supports all of the new capabilities being delivered in APN 5.2. Moreover, its zone-based firewall supports policy-based filtering between services and security zones as well as static and dynamic NAT. It also features global security zones shared between Talari-enabled branches. The global definitions of security zones and filter policies are now network aware, which can be extended across the WAN, to the internet, and even within the site. The result is that macro- and micro-level security segmentation configuration and maintenance are now more simplified.

Another great feature is the ability to specify one or more of the connections as costly and as a result keep it as a link of last resort. Typically these could be wireless or satellite connections. In addition, the system can be configured to send less important traffic over a slower link like satellite so more responsive networks can be used for real-time traffic such as VoIP.

The company’s 5200 box now supports up to 550 sites, but they told me it could exceed this number if needed. All the boxes can do active bandwidth testing on a schedule or immediately, allowing a company to get a sense of which links get congested at what times. In addition, the solution is smart enough to realize a connection of X Mbps isn’t able to run at full capacity but works well if reduced to Y percent.

In the future, we can expect Talari to continue adding features while focusing on MSPs as a channel and finally, ensuring its Alliance partner ecosystem continues to grow. There is also new branding and a new website. Talari is getting very serious about remaining a big player in SD-WAN and increasing share.

The company is far from alone, but this news shows it will continue to be a formidable competitor in the space.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi