Aruba + AWS = Simplified Connectivity

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The Distributed Enterprise Challenge
Let’s face it: Network administrators who are supporting distributed organizations have major challenges today. On top of monitoring and maintaining their networks at corporate headquarters, they also have to deal with:

  • Branch office users demanding more services on their mobile devices.
  • Branch office users consuming more cloud-based services including SaaS solutions and corporate-owned services running in Amazon Virtual Private Clouds (Amazon VPCs).
  • More and more IoT devices deployed in the branch, connecting to the network and creating security risks.
  • Bandwidth costs for typically MPLS-based dedicated circuits connecting branch offices to HQ are skyrocketing and forcing some organizations to use Internet broadband as a cost-effective connectivity but less reliable option–not a good thing when trying to run a business.

Today, I’m excited to announce Aruba’s integration with Amazon Web Services’ (AWS) newest solution: Transit Gateway Network Manager. This combined solution leverages AWS’ secure, high performance network backbone to enable our joint customers to reduce costs and simplify connectivity between branch offices and their AWS-based resources.

Aruba’s SD-WAN Delivers Branch-to-Cloud Connectivity
In June 2018, Aruba introduced SD-Branch, which combines our SD-WAN solution with our proven WLAN/LAN networking, all managed by our cloud-based Aruba Central network operations platform. The goal is to provide distributed organizations with a way to reduce their WAN costs while also improving management control and security over their branch office network so organizations can focus on keeping costs in check, users productive and customers happy.

With branch locations scaling up to the hundreds – if not thousands – of sites, the need for flexibility and simplified management powered by the cloud is critical,said Kishore Seshadri, vice president and general manager of SD-WAN Solutions at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company. “The integration between Aruba’s SD-Branch solution and AWS uses the power of the cloud to seamlessly connect branches to workloads in any region by connecting to the closest AWS Transit Gateway, accelerate VPN connectivity for any branch bypassing the public Internet, and deliver branch-to-branch connectivity in different regions by leveraging the AWS mid-mile.

Aruba’s SD-WAN solution already provides a ton of great features that enable our customers to do amazing things. Most recently, we were pleased to be awarded the CRN Tech Innovators award over many long-standing SD-WAN vendors. Some of the cool SD-WAN features that are really helping our customers meet their goals are: SaaS Express, WAN Optimizer and virtual gateways for Amazon Web Services (AWS).

  • SaaS Express – Dynamically identifies optimal routes for high-priority SaaS solutions such as Office 365.
  • SD-WAN Orchestrator – Provides policy-driven SD-WAN overlay by auto-discovering WAN links and then orchestrating overlay tunnels based on topology needs and distribution of routes based on policy.
  • Virtual Gateways – The AWS virtual gateway automates establishment of tunnels, provides complete end-to-end visibility and can scale to support over 10,000 tunnels and routes.

But none of these great features help distributed organizations address the challenge of connecting remote offices to HQ and to VPCs cost effectively. That’s where AWS comes in.

Aruba has been working with AWS for years. Aruba Central, our cloud-based network operations and assurance platform, supports over 50,000 customers out of eight AWS points of presence worldwide. In addition to the virtual gateway for AWS, we’ve recently integrated with AWS Transit Gateway to reduce the complexity for organizations running multiple VPCs.

AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager Simplifies VPC Resource Sharing
Today, I’m proud to announce that Aruba has been selected by AWS to participate in their announcement of the AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager.

“We are pleased to be working with Aruba to integrate the Aruba SD-Branch with AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager as a simplified branch networking solution that delivers enterprise-grade performance at scale,” said David Brown, Vice President, Amazon EC2, Amazon Web Services, Inc. “This new capability helps customers to simplify and streamline network management for customers, so they can focus on driving their businesses forward.”

AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager provides two important capabilities: Transit Gateway Inter-Region Peering and Accelerated Site-to-Site VPN.

Transit Gateway Inter-Region Peering is built on the same technology that powers Amazon VPC today. Traffic always stays on the global AWS backbone and never traverses the public Internet allowing customers with VPCs in multiple AWS Regions and/or have branch offices near multiple Availability Zones to more easily connect to and share VPC resources.

Accelerated Site-to-Site VPN takes advantage of the AWS global network to improve VPN performance. VPN connections from branches to cloud-based services over the public Internet can experience latency and jitter. Accelerated VPN allows branch locations to connect to AWS Transit Gateway through the closest AWS edge location and utilize the AWS global network to provide secure, reliable “mid-mile” connectivity between branch locations. (See Figure 1.)

AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager 

Figure 1. AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager

For organizations to leverage the AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager features, they must connect their branch offices and HQ to the nearest AWS point of presence. This is where Aruba SD-WAN comes in. In addition to SaaS Express and SD-WAN Orchestrator, Aruba SD-WAN includes many additional features that ensure fast and reliable connectivity to the closest AWS point of presence.

Aruba SD-WAN + AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager = Win for Distributed Organizations
When you combine Aruba SD-WAN with AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager, organizations get the best of both worlds. You get fast and reliable access from branch to AWS point of presence using Aruba SD-WAN. You get secure and cost-effective connectivity over any distance using AWS’ backbone. Combined, organizations get secure, high-performance and cost-effectiveness end-to-end connectivity to AWS resources and between corporate offices.

Aruba will be showcasing its latest innovations, including the Aruba SD-Branch with AWS Transit Gateway Network Manager solution, at AWS re:Invent 2019 in Booth #1437.

For more information, follow these links:

Aruba SD-WAN / Transit Gateway Network Manager Demo Video
Aruba SD-Branch solutions
Aruba SD-WAN / Transit Gateway Network Manager