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Businesses have no clue what SDN can do for them

Do you know what SDN (Software-Defined Network) is? If not, don’t worry, you’re not alone. A new survey by British cloud and network provider Exponential-e suggests that 86 per cent of businesses don’t understand it, and 95 per cent aren’t aware of the benefits it might bring to the enterprise.

According to Exponential-e’s press release, SDN is being labelled as the ‘future of networking’, as it’s capable of delivering better efficiency and greater automation.

“In an innovate or fail society, an agile and responsive network is central to driving competitive advantage,” explained Chris Christou, director of engineering at Exponential-e.

“Providing a business with the ability to manage and control their Network themselves enables them to support their business internally in their drive for increased revenues.”

So, what is this SDN anyway? Open Networking Foundation has the definition: It is an “emerging architecture that is dynamic, manageable, cost-effective, and adaptable, making it ideal for the high-bandwidth, dynamic nature of today's applications.”

By decoupling the network control, and forwarding functions, it allows the network control to become directly programmable.

Exponential-e says more businesses should take advantage of SDN to provide a central system to manage required services, as 32 per cent of businesses are struggling with increasing software and hardware costs, while 21 per cent say there’s a lack of internal control over the network. Seventeen per cent said their infrastructure could not handle growth.

“SDN increases efficiency and supports the flexibility demanded by fast moving organisations that are tasked with responding to unexpected outages and breaks in service. Using the database as a master A-Z then it’s possible to map the optimum route to instantly reconfigure networks, reduce latency and meet peaks or troughs in demand,” concluded Christou. “SDN effectively removes the impenetrable barrier between a customer and network provider, providing a more flexible and agile way to manage network configurations.”