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Packet Design CEO Video: Enabling Self-Healing, Self-Optimizing Networks

Packet Design CEO Scott Sherwood recently recorded a short video for Light Reading discussing what we do, why we are different, and how we have parlayed our real-time network telemetry and analytics into an enabler of WAN SDN.


What does Packet Design do?

Scott: Packet Design provides service assurance solutions for IP/MPLS networks. We do this for very large operators, government agencies, and large enterprises.

How are you different from other management software vendors?

Scott: We have very unique telemetry in the network that collects all the routing control plane, and then we also have the data plane by getting flow traffic as well as collecting latency and performance data. We bring all this information together and correlate this, so people then can be able to troubleshoot problems in real time, they can go back in time to do deep forensics, as well as then take all this rich information, since we’re collecting all this in real time, take it, and then do “what-if” analysis for capacity management, planning, change control purposes, and things of that nature.

What really makes the Packet Design technology unique is the fact that we’re collecting all this information at scale for the largest global service providers in real time.

How does the platform relate to SDN?

Scott: The Packet Design software-defined networking management and orchestration platform has really been developed over the last decade. We already had this rich set of analytics that historically users have leveraged, but now with our analytics and algorithms, we’re actually doing machine-to-machine communication. So we’re actually making changes in real time to the network without human intervention. So the concept of a self-healing, self-optimizing network is here through leveraging this intelligent orchestration platform of Packet Design.

Our customers are actually coming to us with some very rich, unique use cases. Traditionally they run their networks at 45 percent, so they have enough capacity in case there’s failure in their networks. But now they want to start running their networks around 70 percent utilization. There are tremendous capex implications around this, and they could never really do this if the network wasn’t self-reliant and self-healing though the use of SDN technologies. So by leveraging the Packet Design technologies they’ll be able to reroute and change the environment in real time. It allows our customers to run their networks much hotter.

Where is Packet Design headed?

Scott: The vision for Packet Design is to really leverage this platform we developed. We’ve written our own SDN-based applications. Some of our large Tier 1 service provider customers have written applications to leverage our platform as well. One of the primary applications that we’ve just written and released to the market was a traffic engineering optimization application. It takes the rich set of analytics, including things like traffic matrix, latency, utilization of the network, with policies. We merge these together to then make optimization of the network, and make those changes to the network in real time without a human ever having to be involved.

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