When thinking about WAN Optimisation, it is easy to concentrate on raw bandwidth figures or noticing the time difference between backup jobs from pre-optimised and post-optimised days - Epochs? Eras? - and miss another vital aspect of improving the efficiency and performance of your networks – understanding who is doing what and with what across your WAN by making good use of the reporting features present in the WAN Acceleration and Optimisation units from Sangfor.
By knowing which machines and what services are generating the most traffic and at what time of day, you can diagnose the root cause behind incidents and adjust the settings of your Sangfor unit to better suit your needs and provide a solution, especially when adhering to ITIL best practices.
For example, you have installed a new WAN Acceleration and Optimisation unit into your head office and a branch office but Remote Desktop users still report periods of noticeable slowdown. As part of your investigation, you can run a report covering the time scales of the slowdown to see which IP on your network was generating the most traffic and the services that traffic was composed of.
Through that report, you may discover a server running a DR backup/replication or a particular user making heavy use of media streaming websites resulting in less bandwidth for Remote Desktop users. Armed with this knowledge you can immediately address the issue by either making changes to the schedule on the problematic server, limit the user from accessing those websites or by modifying the Bandwidth Management settings to ensure essential traffic such as RDP is guaranteed a minimum slice of the bandwidth pie, reducing the impact other services have on a business’s core applications.
Where you could have spent days collecting and reading TCPDump logs or spending money on extra network monitoring equipment and contractors, you can generate a report in minutes, pinpoint the cause and develop a solution within a very short period of time. By setting these reports up to generate automatically and be delivered straight to your inbox on a daily, weekly and even monthly basis you can often notice a problem before it becomes a disruptive one.
In addition to being a useful tool in diagnosing issues in the present and formulating a solution, this body of data can assist long term projects in making the case for or against any major changes to the provision of IT services across the company. Traffic Flow Speed and Total Flow reports will show just how much data is passing across your WAN and how close you are to the maximum throughput your WAN connection is capable of.
This allows you to answer important questions such as “Can our infrastructure handle the migration of our CRM application to a new cloud based solution?” or “Is the bottleneck our WAN link or the server performance?” which often leads to “How do we fix this?” and, more importantly “How much will it cost?”.
Taking advantage of the built-in reporting functionality in Sangfor’s WAN Accelerators gives you an in-depth knowledge of the data flowing in and out of your network, which is crucial in providing an efficient WAN, ensuring your business gets value for money on their infrastructure and informs future decisions based on solid usage data.