During the ONUG conference I attended a TechFieldDay event with Versa Networks and an introduction to their Service Provider SD-WAN product.
The SD-WAN market has quite a number of comapnies jostling for customers but, in my view, their products are still differentiated. Versa Networks seems to be focussed on service providers. Given that the founders are ex-Juniper, I would expect they are leveraging their previous experiences and customer relationships for startup momentum.
- uses overlay networking
- a zero-touch provisioning system to support large scale rollouts
- Cloud, physical & virtual gateways
- Cloud portals
- Uses MP-BGP for configuration management
- some super-magic crypto implementation that has been patented to send key material in the clear (I think)
- in-band probes using Y.1731 Ethernet OAM
- security policy
- TPM hardware for secure key management
In broad terms, the technology stack used by Versa Networks is similar to most other SD-WAN companies.
- Multi-tenant SD-WAN solution
- suitable for managed service providers to replace their MPLS backbones by removing expensive CE/PE devices
- reduce costs of multi-carrier networks
- Scale out deployment
- The usual virtual overlay for multi-topology WAN services
- SD-WAN gateways replace the customer router
The key points of differentiation
- multi-tenancy SD-WAN solution
- using BGP will reassure service providers that this solution can scale.
- in-band network probes for state monitoring
- Focus on scaling and size
- application features are limited compared to other products which simplifies SP operations
The Etherealmind View
Versa Networks is coming late to the SD-WAN market. It is clearly targeting a specific market segment that is under-served but difficult to change.
Here are the key points that Versa presented:
- managed service providers could replace MPLS backbones and lower costs.
- we use MP-BGP to scale
- we have our own patented crypto.
I’m concerned about Versa Networks developing their own crypto. When someone develops and codes their own cryptographic solution, its always ends badly.
Claims about scaling because you use BGP don’t impress me. BGP is fine protocol but scaling is determined by hundreds of other factors and BGP is the least of them.
At a competitive level, Versa Networks will be competing with Viptela and Nuage Networks whose products are selling today into the managed service provider market. These solutions are somewhat different from Versa but the managed service provider is well served already.
The full video is below:
Follow this link to watch “The Sales Pitch” on Vimeo – Versa Networks Introduction with Darrell Long if you are interested in the business summary.