Apcela Extends Software-Defined WAN Tech to Multicloud

Apcela launched the Arcus Platform to help enterprises extend wide-area networks (WANs) to multicloud environments.

As the company describes itself as a software-defined, cloud-optimized networking specialist, the new offering leverages its software-defined overlay network to help organizations integrate datacenters, branch offices, remote workers and so on with Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and Internet-as-a-Service (IaaS) providers, effectively extending the traditional WAN to the cloud.

The web site for Apcela Arcus Platform emphasizes the software-defined approach, saying, "Apcela Arcus Platform allows enterprises to easily plug their existing network into a software-defined WAN that was built for today's multicloud environment."

The solution consists of several Apcela Arcus components including: the core product, Connect; Secure for layered security; and Intelligence to automate ticketing, provide new business insights and help streamline event identification and resolution.

The fully managed Connect core service provides the SD-WAN overlay that connects to the company's global backbone network that comprises more than 60 AppHubs to boost performance and provide easy access to multiple cloud environments like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce, and Google Cloud Platform.

When asked how the solution differs from traditional software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN), a term not used in the announcement, VP Sean Kaine told Virtualization & Cloud Review: "We certainly use SD-WAN as part of the solution but it is only one component of the Apcela Arcus Platform. We often discuss it by talking about the types of traffic that enterprises manage:

  • General internet and research traffic. Generally, latency and performance are not an issue as it is traffic that is not business or mission critical. We leverage SD-WAN to offload this traffic to the public internet where the CDNs of the world help get the job done.
  • Business-critical traffic destined for applications at the datacenter. Here, performance matters. Enterprises have traditionally solved this leveraging MPLS to route the business-critical traffic back to the datacenter. With Apcela Arcus Connect, the core layer of the Arcus Platform, enterprises often find that they can significantly reduce, and sometimes eliminate their MPLS spend all-together (as a result of 1 and 3).
  • Business-critical traffic destined for cloud service providers. Once again, performance matters and here is where Apcela truly differentiates itself from just an SD-WAN solution. As more applications and workloads move to the cloud, enterprises need an MPLS-like experience, not the public internet, for business-critical traffic. Said another way, leveraging a video-saturated public internet for mission-critical services in the cloud is far from optimal for many enterprises. Apcela Arcus Platform enables these enterprises to 'plug into' (via SD-WAN) a high-performance global backbone that was built for the cloud."

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.


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