We are delighted to announce the release of NetScaler SD-WAN v9.2! Feature-wise, this is the richest release yet, targeting features in different areas like product portfolio expansion, application security, cloud networking proliferation, troubleshooting and configuration enhancements, dynamic routing knobs, and more.
In the figure below, the three axes represent the different versions of our product that we have improved in 9.2 and this post will cover these product portfolio enhancements in detail.
2100-SE – New Physical Appliance
With 9.2, we’ve introduced 2100, a brand-new appliance in the NetScaler SD-WAN family. With hybrid WAN, public cloud for IaaS and SaaS and bandwidth getting cheaper, Enterprise WAN is evolving at a rapid pace. 2100 helps customers through this transition and provides future proofing capabilities.
With its scale, performance and myriad interface options, 2100 is ideal for deployments at small Datacenters. Although ideal for small data centers, 2100 can also be deployed at Branches of different sizes. NetScaler SD-WAN, doesn’t preclude branch appliances to be deployed in datacenters and vice versa. With this choice, customers get the benefit of having common sparing and certification for different deployments.
2100 has different SKUs based on the capacity requirement. These SKUs give our customers a very granular control over paying for their exact capacity requirement. Should a customer’s capacity requirement change, they have the flexibility of keeping the same appliance and buying a software license to increase their capacity.
Although 9.2 has support only for 2100-SE (Standard Edition that provides SD-WAN only), we will soon have 2100-WO (WAN Optimization edition only) and 2100-EE (Enterprise Edition that combines SD-WAN and WAN-Optimization). If customers have a new requirement for running WAN-Optimization on top of SD-WAN, customers will have the flexibility of converting from 2100-SE to 2100-EE (by adding an SSD which will be sold as a SKU). Hence, 2100 not only provides future proofing through capacity upgrade, but also provides future proofing for SD-WAN and WAN-Optimization requirement by allowing for conversions.
2100 also provides different interface options. Although for ethernet, copper ports are the predominant mode of deployment in Enterprise networks (especially branches), we are seeing a lot of Enterprise customers who foresee Fiber or SFP as the primary mode of connectivity to their carriers. With this in mind, 2100 supports both Copper and SFP ports. The copper ports also support Fail to Wire mode (FTW), which ensures uninterrupted operation even if the SD-WAN device goes down for catastrophic reasons like power failure, hardware failure etc.
2100-SE also ships with Zero Touch Deployment (ZTD) feature. With ZTD, deployments become super easy, as the customer only needs to power the appliance and connect a network cable. 2100-SE has an in-built agent that calls Citrix’s Zero Touch Cloud service to authenticate, discover and register the customer’s network (more about the Zero Touch Service in a later blog). Once Citrix ensures that the devices is authenticated, it automatically pushes the device’s configuration and image. The device then seamlessly becomes a part of customer’s network. ZTD takes away the pain of sending a dedicated technician to bring up the device. ZTD hence helps our customers in a faster branch bring-up, thus helping our customers focus on what’s important to them: running their business.
1Gbps VPX- Software Version
With 9.2, we have also launched a 1Gbps SKU for VPX (on ESXi), our software or virtual version of SD-WAN. Customers now have the option of deploying both a high capacity virtual or hardware version of our SD-WAN solution. We are increasingly seeing VPX use cases in private data centers from customers who are interested in an NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) based approach to networking through deployment on common off the shelf servers.
Apart from live deployments, VPX provides a great opportunity to customers who would like to test the magic of SD-WAN before actual deployment. Just like 2100, in VPX as well, we offer granular SKUs based on capacity to give our customers the flexibility to deploy the right SKU based on their exact capacity requirement. This helps our customers with deploying a lower capacity SKU at branches and a higher capacity VPX SKU at their datacenters.
Azure Marketplace Presence
Finally, prior to this release, we already had a presence on the AWS marketplace. With 9.2, we extend our presence onto the Azure Marketplace, as well. For customers already using Azure for their IaaS resources, VPX on Azure provides a great opportunity to leverage end-to-end SD-WAN benefits between their branch or private datacenters to Azure instance.
The NetScaler SD-WAN datasheet covers the SKUs, and both hardware and software appliances in additional detail.