In the first blog post in our series on hybrid cloud world challenges for application delivery, we learned that there are three areas to address: reliable access & delivery, trusted security, and visibility through intelligent analytics. We will focus this post on diving into reliable access.

Many organizations are starting to use hybrid- and multi-cloud architectures to deliver their business applications, but all too often, their networks just aren’t reliable enough to make it a reality. Reliability involves more than simply maintaining an internet connection at all times; it means ensuring that your connection is high quality and that you can use your applications to their fullest extent.

Traditionally, businesses relied on multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) for ensuring a high-quality, reliable connection. But as long as you only have one connection, your reliability is at risk. And for companies that rely on a broadband link, the chances of a connection failure are even greater.

Why is reliability so important for businesses?

According to a 2017 IDC survey conducted for Citrix, 58 percent of respondents said that improved reliability is a “must have” when delivering applications in a hybrid- or multi-cloud environment.1

Reliability is particularly important for businesses that maintain revenue-generating branches. If a health care clinic can’t connect to the internet, then it’s quite possible that the company won’t be able to deliver care to patients at that branch. If a bank can’t process transactions because of an outage, they could lose business in the future.

Thankfully, there are solutions, such as Citrix NetScaler SD-WAN, built specifically to address these reliability issues.

How NetScaler SD-WAN ensures reliability

NetScaler SD-WAN creates an enterprise-quality connection from broadband and even wireless links, brings continuity to cloud and internet access at a lower cost than MPLS and with more flexibility, bandwidth, and reliability.

NetScaler SD-WAN creates a secure digital perimeter connection from multiple underlying links and then intelligently directs traffic across these to ensure the highest possible quality of connection. An outage in any one of these links won’t cause you to lose connection to your applications; even a degraded link can be avoided before it causes application performance issues.

SD-WAN and the hybrid cloud

SD-WAN technology is particularly well-suited for cloud applications, which tend to rely on internet links that are somewhat more prone to failure. By aggregating two or more of these links, you can create a high-quality connection. This, in turn, enables direct connections from each branch to cloud locations, removing the latency and cost of backhauling cloud traffic through the data center.

NetScaler SD-WAN creates a reliable connection directly from the branch to the cloud. It ensures high application performance by selecting the best path for each application. In addition, it simplifies the network setup and allows for centralized policy definition, minimizing the potential for error.

For these reasons, SD-WAN is an invaluable part of the Citrix NetScaler portfolio, creating highly reliable access to applications deployed in a hybrid- or multi-cloud architecture. Reliability doesn’t occur at just one part of the application delivery process—it needs to be built in at every layer.

Next week, come back to learn more about the trusted security and control features that are needed in this new hybrid cloud world.

[1] Source: “How do Organizations Plan to Assure Application Delivery in a Multi-Cloud World?”an IDC InfoBrief, sponsored by Citrix, Oct. 2017.