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How to turn your network into a strategic asset

Wilson Lai, Technical Director, Asia-Pacific and Japan, Extreme Networks | April 24, 2015
Wilson Lai, Technical Director, Asia-Pacific and Japan from Extreme Networks discusses how organizations can be empowered to turn the network into a strategic business asset with network analytics.

Optimizing the network

Mobile users will demand immediate access to all of their apps. To maximize the end user experience, organizations must make sure that apps can be seamlessly delivered from the cloud - private or public - to those users and devices.

Organizations looking to optimize the network and server infrastructure need to have visibility into application usage. Apart from better supporting bandwidth-intensive apps, it can also enable the enhancement of user productivity, as well as streamline troubleshooting.

Network bandwidth can be freed up for other apps by having visibility over the usage patterns of apps. With information on which apps are being deployed based on location and time periods, network bandwidth can be altered to support peak usage periods. By harnessing data in the network, performance is optimized with quicker application response times for users, reduced service operations and higher user productivity.

When issues with performance are reported, it is often difficult to determine if the issue lies with the network, application, client or server. Insights into the network can not only pinpoint the error but also determine the network response time. A network must not simply pass packets at a high speed, but must also give visibility and control.

Ensuring peace of mind

With apps and websites being so easily accessible to users - including those not administered by the organization - there is a need to discern whether or not the apps being deployed in the network meet security requirements. Organizations will want to understand if the right products are being supported and safeguarded. This can be achieved by understanding what apps are in operation and how they are being utilized, through network analytics.

While not all unapproved apps will pose a security risk, visibility on them will help the organization keep a check should they need to determine why they are being used. This allows not only the proactive identification of potential security risks, but it also helps to analyze whether the approved applications are meeting the needs of the business, in contrast to unapproved applications.

We can no longer disregard the fact that data is everywhere, it is present even in the network. Organizations just need to enable themselves to mine this data to deliver meaningful intelligence about applications, users, locations and devices. When the network infrastructure answers these questions, it becomes a strategic business asset.


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