Network visibility and traffic analysis
How does the SDN application know when something is happening in the network? This can be accomplished through a feedback mechanism like SFlow.
SFlow provides enhanced network visibility and traffic analysis; contributes relevant data to an overall network security solution; and can be used for SLA verification, accounting and billing purposes. SFlow has been implemented in network switches & routers for many years and is now often implemented in end hosts.
The network can respond by re-routing large flows, dropping flows that match Denial of Service Attacks (DOS), duplicating the flow to an analytics platform for further analysis, or simply by throttling down traffic to specific websites. All these can be done automatically from a central point by the SDN application.
Start putting your network to work
Network automation has always been a challenge for IT administrators due to the difficulties of having network visibility, control and automation of different network devices; especially in a multi-vendor environment. Very often, the existing solutions offered are more reactive rather than proactive, and by the time the IT administrator is alerted to issues, it would already be too late.
The answer to this problem is to have a more open and programmable network that enables not just automation but innovation as well. A variety of SDN applications can be developed, since the interface to the SDN controller is standard.
This is an attribute of the New IP which is designed to meet the needs of cloud, mobile, social and big data, where the demands of IT infrastructure agility and automation is key to helping organisations remain competitive and stay relevant.
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