Organizations are increasingly dependent on their data networks; in many offices, everything grinds to a halt if the Internet connection goes down. The problem is even more acute for businesses using cloud computing and digital voice that require a continuous Wide Area Network (WAN) connection. A crashed router might be up and running again in seconds, however, if a digger accidentally cuts through a cable, it could be hours—or even days—before the connection is restored. The way to ensure business continuity is to have a second 'redundant' link, using an alternative route, that will provide connectivity if the primary connection fails.
For a small business with only a broadband Internet connection over DSL or cable, it might be enough to have a fixed wireless link or a cellular wireless hotspot as alternative connections. For an organization with a multi-site MPLS network, installing redundant links with managed automatic failover (which switches traffic to the secondary link without any interruption in service) is the best way to ensure continuity. It means that there is no need for the IT staff to intervene in the event of a network outage.
If the primary MPLS connection is over Ethernet, the secondary connection might be a cheaper DSL or cable line. The second connection can remain in stand-by mode, but it is more efficient to use MPLS to dynamically balance the load between the two links and improve performance when both are operational. MPLS QoS functionality can ensure that mission-critical traffic is routed on the highest performance link at any given time.
Contact Scisbo to find out the best way to implement managed automatic failover and network redundancy at your sites. You’ll gain peace of mind knowing that your network will continue to operate during WAN outages.