When you think about improving the performance of certain data intensive applications running across your WAN, it is quite easy to fall into the trap of focusing too tightly on that specific case at the expense of taking a wider view of your WAN usage.
For example, many backup and disaster recovery applications now boast basic WAN acceleration technologies such as block-level caching and compression to their feature sets as a means of reducing their load on your network. While this, on its own, is a good step forwards it only works on traffic generated by the backup application itself – your network file sharing (CIFS), exchange email and SQL traffic won’t see any benefit. It also means spending money on feature unlocking licenses or whole new product versions just to improve that one application.
If you were to deploy WAN Optimisation units from Sangfor on each side of your WAN, not only would you be accelerating and optimising your backup solution - often with better results, especially in block-level caching since our units work on blocks as small as 512 bytes verses the 1Mb block limit present in many backup applications – but you can also accelerate these common business applications at the same time without extra costs:
- Network File Sharing (CIFS)
- Anti-virus software such as Sophos Anti-virus and Kaspersky
- Microsoft Exchange – without sacrificing encryption between client and server!
- Remote Desktop
- Backup Exec
- Windows System Update Services
- Office Intranets – whether in-house, bespoke or off the shelf
- File Maker
- Windows Deployment Services/Linux based PXE OS installation
- And many more...
By extending WAN optimisation to a network level rather than on a per application basis, you can realise significant performance improvements across the board without embarking on costly upgrades and the often lengthy project management of those upgrades.
Since our units are independent of the applications used in your business, you can gain additional benefits such as using our bandwidth management features to enforce Quality of Service (QoS) policies, regular report generation to give you detailed views on WAN usage and even extend optimisation to mobile users.
There is another aspect of IT that can benefit from having a dedicated WAN optimisation solution – the ever changing landscape of business applications and network utilisation. As a company changes, so too will the type of software being used and the different vendors providing them. By investing heavily in any single business application it reduces the likelihood of migrating to an alternative, even if the currently employed solution is no longer fit for purpose and hampering or holding back the ability for a company to respond to changing circumstances.
A dedicated WAN optimisation solution frees you up from needing to worry about the WAN performance of the choices available to you and whether the software has its own optimisation features bundled in or at an additional cost. Your solution will already be in place, and with the ability to run reports on all of your WAN traffic you can get the best out of every application running on your network - past, present and future.
With the workplace adapting to modern lifestyles and increasing its flexibility in allowing staff to conduct their duties from outside of the traditional office space, the need to support access to company resources from a wide range of external networks - complete with unpredictable rates of contention, available bandwidth and high latencies - brings with it many frustrations, hampered productivity and even render some tasks impossible to do outside of the office.
So how do you speed up these roaming users and deliver services to them with the same sort of reliability as being on the local network in the office? It isn’t feasible to carry around a full WAN Acceleration unit or to install one into the homes of staff members, so how about a software solution instead?
By using a portable acceleration client (PACC) you can improve your service experience and increase productivity levels of individual remote workers, regardless of whether they are using their own home internet connection, a public wifi network or a company issued 3G dongle.
As the user connects to the office with their PACC client, data flowing between the two can benefit from the same acceleration policies used when optimising traffic between offices leading to the improved responsiveness of Remote Desktop sessions, better file access times and reduced “dead time” spent waiting for things to happen instead of getting the job done.
In addition to compression and protocol optimisation, our PACC client uses local caching to dramatically reduce the data being exchanged between the user and the office for services such as network file sharing (CIFS/SMB) and corporate intranet access, stopping them from being downloaded time and time again. Not only will this speed up opening files for the user but it will conserve bandwidth use, saving money by reducing often costly data and roaming charges when using 3G connections or the rising trend for home ISP’s to charge for data consumption too.
Boosting productivity and reducing costs aren’t the only benefits on offer; an often overlooked aspect of mobile acceleration is the way it can be used to speed up getting a new office running or to allow a temporary work space to get going in time limited scenarios such as covering events or responding to disasters. Waiting for fixed internet connections to go live or
for IT to deploy network infrastructure into a building before the location can be used to conduct business is finally a distant memory – allowing a new office to cover the start up costs in a much shorter time scale than ever before.
Essentially, a mobile acceleration client opens up the power of your office based WAN Acceleration and Optimisation units to modern business practices, augments private cloud deployments and extends cost savings, business agility and productivity gains beyond the doors of your established offices.
All you need is a laptop, mobile phone, a 3G dongle and your PACC software to call anywhere “your office”.