SD-WAN Helps Retailers Enable High-Availability and High-Bandwidth Network Edge

Background

Retail chains today have shown growing reliance on advanced IT technologies to manage their inventories, transaction records and customer database. In particular, the global-scale retail chains may generate high-volume of transactions and customer data on a daily basis, and they have to manage inventory records in their warehouses worldwide. However, retail chains face the challenges in their network architecture. Traditionally, retailers rely on vendor-specific, disparate networking equipments and software, and therefore, OPEX have obviously increased when they expand in locations.

In order to maintain their profitability and cost-efficiency, global-scale retailers are seeking high-availability, agile networks that can eliminate outages, improve bandwidth and add services for their customers, while reducing operating costs. Thus, they have turned to SD-WAN to manage their networks.

Requirements

An US-based carrier as a system integrator and installer came to Lanner for SD-WAN hardware, and Lanner cooperated with its SD-WAN software partner 128 Technology to develop an integrated solution to the targeted customer, an auto parts retail chain with around 5,000 branches. Prior to this joint development, the retailer adopted routers from Cisco as WAN interconnect equipments. Once they have deployed the integrated SD-WAN solution from Lanner and 128 Technology, they can easily converge existing infrastructures such as MPLS service, cable modem, Wi-Fi, and 4G LTE through software-defined WAN, while ensuring constant uptimes, unified load-balancing and Zero-Touch Provisioning.

The key elements in this joint SD-WAN solution are as follows:

High Availability

SD-WAN appliances deployed by Zero-Touch Provisioning can be configured as a mirroring pair of Active/Standby devices. While one SD-WAN appliance is configured as Active, another is configured as Standby to monitor the Active one. The mirroring configuration is a fail-over assurance. For instance, if the Standby appliance lost its connectivity with the Active device for a defined period of time, it will assume the role of Active and take over the load-balancing task. Such deployment can minimize the possibility and impact from network outage.

NIC Slot for Expansion

Hardware expansion is a necessary design for retail SD-WAN to meet the bandwidth due to growing number of branches. Thus, the joint solution is designed with NIC expansion slots for additional installation of wireless connectivity modules.

Solutions

In this partnership, Lanner Electronics Inc. introduced its retail SD-WAN solution NCA-2510 to enable virtualized WAN architecture so that customer’s IT management can leverage third-party software to run their instructions.

Lanner’s NCA-2510 is an open architecture, virtualization-optimized 1U rackmount white-box server for SD-WAN. NCA-2510 is powered by Intel® Atom™ C3958, C3758 or C3558 CPU (4 ~16 Cores) and 4x 288-pin DIMM DDR4 at 2,400MHz to efficiently execute load-balancing and network security. NCA-2510 comes with multiple RJ-45 and SFP networking ports to enable connectivity between branches and headquarters. For security acceleration, NCA-2510 is built in with Intel® QuickAssist Technology at 20Gbps, Intel® AES-NI Support and Intel® SR-IOV to accelerate cryptographic encryption/decryption performance and boost virtualization.

To optimize retail network connectivity, Lanner also offers NCS2-MINIPCIE02 module, a PTCRB-certified Wi-Fi/3G/4G/LTE NIC modular solution optimal for operators and device manufacturers located in regions where PTCRB interoperability/compatibility (cat-3 & cat-6) is a requirement. The module enables Wi-Fi/3G/4G/LTE wireless network connectivity and is designed to work with Lanner network appliances via a Gen2 PCIe*8 interface.

Being a dedicated partner in the SD-WAN ecosystem, Lanner possesses a wide range of hardware portfolio in SD-WAN that have been pre-validated by leading SD-WAN vendors so that deployment time and efforts can be reduced. For more information, please visit Lanner’s official website.

SD-WAN Helps Retailers Enable High-Availability and High-Bandwidth Network Edge was last modified: February 18th, 2020 by Jorge Peregrina