WAN accel/optimization optios

cfan73 used Ask the Experts™
Customer looking for WAN optimization. I’m struggling to find appropriate options, as it appears Cisco is ending their WAAS options. The customer mentioned Riverbed, but indicated it was likely too expensive…

The customer isn’t technical, so wasn’t too helpful on the discovery call, but I gathered the following:

•      They have three Ethernet (L2) circuits into their primary location in CA.
•      They sounded like E-Line/ELAN, but…
•      150M, 100M, 20M (being replaced with a 600M down/35M up) – so, the latter is obviously broadband/DIA
•      They couldn’t identify how the Internet connection is being firewalled
•      They have a Mushroom Networks (never heard of it) consolidating these links, somehow providing an SD-WAN policy for them.
•      Nothing (according to them) is being encrypted.

So, all of that wildness aside, they’re looking for something to front these appliances to accelerate their throughput. I’m open to a solution to optimize over each of three links or something larger, such as an SD-WAN option to bring all of them into a policy, etc.
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Network Engineer
What applications are they running? What are they trying to accelerate? Is the issue with cloud based traffic, or on site to site?

Mushroom Networks already bonds the links using SD-WAN type methods, so I don't see another SD-WAN helping.

WAN optimization is generally going away since TCP stacks greatly improved with Windows Vista, bandwidth costs have fallen, encryption became pervasive, and things started moving to the cloud.

Cisco WAAS always sucked to deploy.

You should find out what the real issue is, and is it even bandwidth related. Are all existing connections broadband? Is fiber or fixed wireless available in the area? I had issues finding a fixed wireless carrier in the Central Valley, and none of my brokers knew of any, but we eventually found one. Much better than DSL for our backup.

Virtually all of my traffic goes through a 200 mbps symmetric connection for 1300 employees on and off site. So, it seems that there is some combination of massive bandwidth needs, those connections are all asymmetric, or the network is seriously broken, or maybe they just don't have a clue.



Thanks for your feedback here. I'm trying to gather additional detail from the customer, but it's been fairly limited up to now.

I will close/award this thread.

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