SD-WAN, IoT, and the disruptor taking aim at the enterprise firewall market - the road less traveled
This is the third in a series of four posts by Tony Burgess. You can follow the series as it's published here.
Barracuda never did go down the ASIC road, in part because they weren’t trying to compete in the large enterprise market. Instead, they’ve always used generic chipsets that can execute any program. And it’s worth noting that ASIC design requires you to keep the core functionality unchanged and to address new requirements with bolt-on additions—which are often kludgy, and always costly. Traditional coding, on the other hand, encourages the active development of improvements and refinements to existing solutions, since even the most basic code can be edited easily.
For a decade now, Barracuda has employed that flexibility to develop new and different ways for its firewalls to address the bandwidth challenges facing all organizations. Today, Barracuda’s proprietary VPN protocol, TINA (Transport-Independent Network Architecture), lets you easily bond any assortment of connections you like—phone, ISDN, T1, whatever—into a single logical VPN tunnel, or multiple tunnels, or whatever you want to do. It effectively virtualizes your network’s transport resources and lets you mold them freely to your needs. And TINA VPN is extraordinarily easy to configure, with a visual UI where you literally create VPN tunnels by clicking and dragging.
This is a tremendous benefit for customers running up against bandwidth limitations. Now, instead of relying on very expensive leased MPLS lines, you can get the same throughput by virtually bonding a fistful of cheap ISDN connections—plus you get a more reliable connection because of built-in redundancy/failover.
On top of this, Barracuda firewalls have a lot of built-in intelligence to do on-the-fly traffic and bandwidth balancing—they’re always aware of each connection's quality, and they assign and dynamically reassign traffic based on priority, lag tolerance, and other criteria that you define.
Best of all, Barracuda’s centralized management unit, which is nearly unchanged from phion’s original version, continues to lead the industry in power and ease of use—so you don’t need to staff up a whole new IT department just to manage your firewalls.
Stop by tomorrow for part four, SD-WAN and the End of Hub-and-Spoke. You can follow the entire four-part series as it's published here.