Arthur Cole spoke with Jean-Paul Bergeaux, CTO, SwishData.
It's fair to say that the cloud pushes the concept of distributed computing to a whole new level. With resources located not just across the data center but across the globe, wide area networks are coming under increasing pressure to maintain data and application performance on par with local networks. Companies like SwishData are bringing new tools to the fight against WAN latency and bottlenecks, as the company's Jean-Paul Bergeaux explains.
"... it must be said that even without the classic WAN that needs a performance boost, network optimization tools can still significantly improve an enterprise's performance depending on the infrastructure design, applications and usage."
Cole: Now that the cloud has upped the ante as far as distributed computing goes, many enterprises are taking a hard look at their wide area infrastructure. How does WAN optimization need to change to accommodate the new data landscape?
Bergeaux: There really are two worlds in the cloud: the internal and external clouds. Mature WAN optimization products are already in a good position to take advantage of these shifts in the IT landscape to an internal cloud. To make sure they are firmly in place to take advantage of the external clouds, WAN optimization companies need to have a tie-in to the distribution networks that bring cloud products to customers.
Cole: Your solution aims to clean up "dirty data" on the WAN. What does that mean?
Bergeaux: Applications and solutions in today's IT data centers tend not to be designed to be light on the network in the same way that app designers in the past tended to take as much of the CPU and memory they could get. Think of it as "bloated code," just for the network instead of internal computer resources. This results in not just un-optimized data packets, but chatty network connections that unnecessarily cause many more round-trip communications on the network. Mature network optimization tools help to streamline that bloat and excessive chattiness on the network to get better performance and better network utilization.
Cole: Should enterprises start to view the WAN as the new LAN, not so much a data conduit to branch offices but as an application delivery platform?
Bergeaux: It fully depends on the enterprise. Some do not have users that are a great distance or with small WAN bandwidth connections to the data centers. But those types of enterprises are becoming less and less common, especially as telework and remote/mobile users become more prevalent. However, it must be said that even without the classic WAN that needs a performance boost, network optimization tools can still significantly improve an enterprise's performance depending on the infrastructure design, applications and usage.