Window on WANs

Aug 27 2012   11:24AM GMT

What will accelerate your data?

Tessa Parmenter Tessa Parmenter Profile: Tessa Parmenter

Life was once simpler for the network architect: Corporate data was located in a data center that belonged to the company, and end users used to work at the headquarters or branch office. If end users complained about a stalling application, a deathly-slow file download or an eternal backup, IT could look into the appropriate WAN optimization or application acceleration solution to make that data run faster. They could put a WAN optimization controller (WOC) at the headquarters and branch and accelerate data between the two controllers — likewise with an application delivery controller (ADC).

But times have changed: Software as a Service (SaaS) makes more sense for organizations; data and storage live in the cloud instead of on-premises; end users don’t just access corporate resources at an office, but also at home and on the go. These changes break down the traditional hub-and-spoke network architecture that once supported older business models. Today, making that data run faster for the cloud and mobile worker is nearly impossible with a hardware WOC or ADC.

Fortunately, vendors have caught on and developed virtual or cloud optimization solutions to keep up with this evolution. Yet cloud WAN optimization is not factored into WAN optimization market research reports, which paint a picture of a fading market. While WAN optimization may be called a different name — like “cloud optimization” or “IT performance solution”  — the technology will be there to accelerate any data traversing the network.  So when looking for a solution that can accelerate your data — wherever it may live — be on the look-out for non-traditional technology.

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