The Network. Reinvented for Cloud.

Amir Khan and Atif Khan

Apr 23 2020  | 50 mins

Deploying cloud networks is complex, inconsistent and costly. Organizations are seeking a more simple and agile approach to connect remote locations to the public cloud and SaaS environments, as well as connect multiple public clouds together.

Alkira is introducing the Alkira Cloud Services Exchange™, the first unified multi-cloud network with integrated network services, visibility, and governance, all delivered as-a-service. This innovative new offering has been hailed by customers and analysts as “revolutionary”, “a game-changer”, and even “amazing”.

Join our founding team in this interactive webinar and learn how the Alkira Cloud Services Exchange can help you get to and across clouds in minutes instead of months.

In this webinar you will learn to:

  • Instantly connect user and sites to the cloud, and your clouds together
  • Easily insert and autoscale on-demand network services, like Firewalls, with intent-based policies
  • Quickly draw your multi-cloud network on a digital design canvas, with no cloud-specific expertise required
  • Dramatically lower cloud TCO with as-a-service consumption and zero upfront costs
  • Provisions an entire global multi-cloud network in a single click of the mouse

Speakers:
Amir Khan – CEO,  Alkira
Atif Khan – CTO,  Alkira

Webinar Transcript

Male Voice:

Imagine a network that can take you to and across clouds minutes instead of months, a network where services like firewalls live and scale in the cloud, a network you don’t build but draw, a network delivered as a service. Imagine a one-click cloud network.But for today’s enterprises, the reality of cloud networking is very different; too costly with upfront hardware investments, too slow with tedious do-it-yourself configuration, too complex with deep expertise needed for each and every cloud. The network must be reinvented for the cloud.

Introducing the Alkira Cloud Services Exchange™ (or CSX), the world’s first unified multi-cloud networks delivered as-a-service. At the heart of the Alkira CSX are Alkira Cloud Exchange Points or CXPs. CXPs are virtualized points of presence built in the cloud, complete with a full routing stack and network services capabilities, CXPs deliver symmetric traffic steering for stateful network services, optimal routing to cloud with no data center backhaul, and establish a global transit network connecting multiple public clouds together.

Your closest CXP provides a single point of onboarding into your global multi-cloud world. With Alkira, you can instantly connect your users and sites to the cloud and your clouds together, easily insert and autoscale your on-demand network services, like firewalls, with intent-based policies. See more, govern better, with end-to-and visualization of your entire multi-cloud network, and dramatically lower your cloud TCO with as-a-service consumption and zero upfront costs.

Now you can design and provision your global multi-cloud network as easy as one, two, three. One: Register for service. Two: Visualize your network and network services on a design canvas. Three: Click the provision button. Instantly, the Alkira solution connects your sites to and across clouds. Now watch your multi-cloud network come to life. Alkira. The Network Reinvented for Cloud.™

David:
Hello, and welcome to this Alkira webinar, The Network Reinvented for Cloud. My name is David Klebanov. I’m the head of product marketing here at Alkira, and today with us we have two exciting speakers for you. We have Amir Khan, CEO and founder of Alkira. How are you doing, Amir?
Amir:
Good morning. I hope everybody’s doing well.
David:
All right, and then we have Atif Khan, CTO and founder here at Alkira.
Atif:
Good morning, everyone.
David:

All right. Well, thank you for being with us, guys. Let’s get right into it. So, a couple of housekeeping items. This webinar is being recorded, so we’re going to share the recording with all the attendees. We’re going to post this online as well, so please visit us at www.alkira.com to watch it later.If you want, you can ask questions in real time. You can see a question mark on the right-hand side of your webinar window. We’ll try to address as many questions as we can. If we cannot get to you in time, then we will make sure to follow up offline later on. We will also carve out time for a Q&A at the end of the presentation to take some of the questions.

So with that being said, let’s step into it. We have an exciting agenda for you guys today, so we’re going to start off by introducing Alkira, and give you some interesting pointers about us as a company. Now, we’re going to recap some of the current challenges with cloud networking and understand why cloud networking is not what it used to be or what it needs to be today.

Then, we are going to focus on Alkira Cloud Services Exchange, which is the offering that we bring to the market. It is the global unified multi-cloud network that allows you to build your own multi-cloud network with network services, including full visibility and governance within minutes. And we’re going to talk about some of the deployment use cases, how our customers are deploying our solution, and then go to a customer deployment case study.

So this will be a case study of a Fortune 100 enterprise, and we’re going to look at their challenges, how they addressed those challenges with the Alkira solution, and then of course we’re going to have the Q&A at the end and see how many questions we can take.

So with that, I want to hand it over to Amir, and I’ll stay here. Thank you. Amir, take it away.

Amir:

Thank you very much, David. It’s a pleasure to connect with all of you guys. I’ll do a real quick introduction to Alkira itself. We were founded in May of 2018. I went to a couple VCs, Sequoia and Kleiner. We got funded very quickly because we had alignment on our thought process, the solution that we were going to work on, and both Sequoia and Kleiner got excited about the idea and funded us within weeks.

We are very fortunate to have partners like that, and of course GV also came in later. So we’ve raised about $30 million so far. We started working with the customers from the beginning. We like to work very closely with our customers. That’s what we have historically done, and in this case as well, the customers have been involved in helping us build the solution, bringing it to market from very early days.

We also have been working with our partners across the globe. The partners have trusted us for many, many years, and there’s a very strong ecosystem of partners that we are creating. We launched the company on April 15, as you all know, and it has been very well received. There was a need for a solution like this, and it’s not only customers but the press, analysts, and investor community that are extremely excited about what we are bringing to the table.

What we are doing is, we are reinventing the network for the cloud. So if you look at the problems today, from the cloud perspective, it’s very easy to consume compute, storage and applications; but when we talk to our customers, they are struggling with the networking piece. That is still fairly manual. Even though the constructs are available in the cloud, they are very tedious.

Yes, and there’s no on-demand capability available. There’s no as-a-service capability available in computer networking. We still have to go to a single cloud and start deploying one-off pieces and tie them together, and create very complex topologies across the globe. It becomes very tedious very quickly.

When you go to multiple clouds, it becomes exponentially complicated, because each one of these clouds have their own limitations from the networking perspective. So the network has not adapted to what is required out there from a customer base.

If you look at it from a cost perspective, there are a few ways that you can deploy the solution. One is in the colos, which requires a lot of upfront cost; and that only brings you to the edge of the cloud and connects you into the cloud through their constructs. It is very slow.

You also have another way of doing it, which is doing it yourself, to spin up instances and then tying them together manually, as we used to do many years ago. Obviously, nobody’s interested in doing that because it becomes very tedious, and it’s very limited in capability, and it’s very unscalable.

If you look at the limits in different ways, each one of the clouds has their own limitations. It could be either bandwidth related, or number of routes related, or visibility related. So before you know it, you have a very complex environment with too many different tools that you need to use.

There are some solutions out there which are providing some orchestration capability, but they are still very dependent upon the underlying constructs of the clouds. What happens is, you still have to end up learning every little detail of the clouds. It is so complex that you have to go through certified training in each one of these areas.

The customer demand is that, hey, it’s hindering my progress as an enterprise. I don’t need to worry about all the nitty-gritty details of how the vendors are providing these services. I should be able to consume it on demand, whenever I want to, and be able to have a very comprehensive approach to solving this problem.

So the network has always been a roadblock to the cloud adoption. So we are reinventing, again, the network for the cloud. So what does that mean?

What we have done is provided a broader service to the industry, which provides seamless connectivity as a service. When you come to our portal, you design your network based on your intent. It’s a fully routed, segmented infrastructure that you can spin up across the globe from the connectivity perspective; seamlessly integrated with the existing environment on-prem to the cloud.

Also, you just have to give us the credentials, and all the things. The workflow, the user experience – we’ve made it so simple and clean that the whole infrastructure can be designed in minutes and brought up in minutes across the globe.

We also have integrated the services into this environment. Let’s say you want to consolidate security services from the compliance perspective. It’s very tedious and difficult to bring in security services, and scale them up and down based on your needs. It’s a fairly manual process there as well.

So what we have done is created a marketplace of what you call integrated services. You can go pick up instances of different, let’s say, firewalls from the cloud providers marketplace itself; but you still have to maintain, manage, and deploy it manually into your infrastructure.

So what we have done is through our multi-cloud FIRST architecture – Fully Integrated Routing, and Services Technology. We manage the life cycle of the service. We bring up all the connectivity, and we scale up and down, and we maintain that state across the globe, across this full global infrastructure.

What that allows us to do, because we have a very strong infrastructure built underneath based on our own capabilities, we have full visibility into when the traffic comes in, from either on-prem, or it comes in from the clouds themselves. We’re able to apply policies in a very comprehensive manner, and we’ve made the policy infrastructure intent based, truly intent based.

People have marketed that, but in this particular case, once you try it out, you’ll see the strength that we are bringing to the industry, and how simple we have made it to implement business-level policies, simply and visually. Of course, governance has to be built in. We can get into a lot more detail from the compliance and governance perspective once you talk to our team and we understand your requirements.

The whole thing is consumed as-a-service. This is the first in the industry where the control plane, the data plane, the analytics, the governance – it’s what I call consolidation and standardization across the whole cloud environment, as to how you consume going forward. We very strongly feel that we have come up with something which is very transformational in nature.

It is going to transform how we look at computer networking and take us into the future. We look forward to a long road ahead and we are very glad that we are the first to market with such a comprehensive capability in the industry. We want to continue to maintain our lead. Of course, there is no solution without the customer support. Our whole focus is to make our customers successful, which in turn makes us successful.

So we have built a very strong ecosystem of partners, so that alongside our partners, we can scale and we can meet the requirements of our customers from the multi-cloud networking perspective.

I think with that I will hand it over to Atif to take us through the technology details of what we are doing in our solution, why this is unique in the industry, and why this is very disruptive and transformational. It’ll take us into the future for the many years to come with very, very strong fundamentals and building blocks, which will allow us to continue to build on top of this technology.

Atif:

Thank you, Amir. Let’s get into a bit more detail of Alkira’s Cloud Services Exchange here. On this slide, what you see here is a global unified multi-cloud network with integrated network and security services. If you look here, it is built on a hyperscale infrastructure. As Amir said, it is delivered as-a-service. There is no software to download or run in your environment. You come to Alkira’s CSX portal, register, login, and you start building your global unified multi-cloud network.

So what you also see here is that it comprises Alkira Cloud Exchange Points, which we call CXPs. CXPs are brought up on demand. They are available in multiple regions across the globe. As a customer, you can select one or more regions. You select the clouds CXPs need to connect to in a given region; for example, AWS, Azure, GCP. You can connect to SaaS applications from there. You can also provision secure Internet access from these CXPs.

While doing all of this, you do not need to know anything about the underlying constructs of the given cloud to establish connectivity. That’s a key point to note here. You give us your requirements as to what throughput, bandwidth, etc. you need and we deliver it to you as-a-service.

I’m sure many of you will have questions, so while I talk, you can submit your questions. As David said earlier, we can take your questions at the end of the webinar. We will try to address as many questions as we can.

Here, you also see that, from the CXPs, you also have to connect on-prem locations to the CXP. On-prem connectivity here to CXPs can be via your existing private WAN, such as MPLS or SD-WAN. You can also simply create IPSec tunnels from any CPE device. If you need multi-gagabit connectivity to CXPs, we also support AWS Direct Connect as well. So you can use AWS Direct Connect to come directly to these CXPs as well.

Let’s talk a little bit about what’s inside of these CXPs. Inside of these CXPs, you can spin up services. Here you see multiple CXPs on this diagram. You can spin up services, such as firewall and load balancer. You can have DDI (DNS, DHCP and IPAM) service there. You can have NAT services there.

These can be third-party services where you bring your own license, or some of these can be Alkira services as well. Or we can spin up cloud-native services as well. So if you have third-party services, then we manage the lifecycle of the service. We autoscale the service. As a customer, again, you just give us the requirements, and we make sure that your requirements are met.

Now, as a customer or as a user, you decide how traffic is steered to one or more of these services. It’s all based on use cases. You may want traffic to the Internet to go, let’s say, via the firewall. You may not want traffic within the same cloud to go via the firewall; but at the same time you may want to enter the cloud to go via the firewall.

You may have a use case where there are applications sitting in the clouds which need to face the Internet, meaning that the applications are reachable from the Internet. In those cases, traffic to those applications from the Internet may need to traverse, let’s say, both the load balancer and the firewall. So in those cases, you can set up a service chain for those applications. Now you have the capabilities of deciding how the traffic is steered to the services, based on the use cases.

These services are not necessarily sitting in line, so it’s all based on the use cases. It’s all based on your intent, and the traffic is steered to either one of these services or multiple of these services sitting in a chain. So it’s all, again, depending on the use cases.

If you provision more than one CXP, then you immediately get a high-bandwidth, low-latency, full-mesh connectivity between them with end-to-end segmentation. To achieve that, you do not have to do anything to set up that global connectivity. Here, we are showing six CXPs. If you spin up six different regions across the globe, you have instant, end-to-end, full-mesh connectivity between these CXPs without you having to do anything. It’s a fully routed global network which comes up instantly.

Also, one thing to note here is that it’s a service, so it comes with service-level agreement. We are providing you this as-a-service, so we have to back this up with SLA. All SLAs are there, so we give you SLAs. We provide you full visibility to and across clouds. That’s a very important point here, that there needs to be full visibility to and across clouds. Visibility includes application-level disability, flow-level visibility, performance metrics, routing visibility, routing controls, and built-in troubleshooting tools.

Above all, you build this multi-cloud network through a simple point-and-click user interface. As I mentioned earlier, it’s delivered as-a-service, so you consume it through logging in into Alkira’s CSX portal. You practically draw your network on a canvas, click provision, and your global network comes up in minutes. Consumption is very simple.

One of the key things here is that we have made it very simple. We wanted to make it very simple while, at the same time, providing you with a comprehensive network solution with all the use cases which you need being supported here.

Here, we are giving you a glimpse into the inside of a CXP. It’s a multi-tenant infrastructure, which we have built. It’s a fully routed infrastructure, which scales horizontally with the needs of the customers. As the customer’s scaling needs grow, this infrastructure also scales horizontally.

It’s a very highly available infrastructure. Since it’s a service, we have to make sure that it’s highly available. As I mentioned, there are SLAs, which are provided by Alkira. Here you’re seeing one CXP. If there are multiple CXPs, they all connect to each other. There’s fully routed connectivity via integrated services between these CXPs, which are global in nature.

Here, this slide gives you information on how the services are consumed. As I mentioned, you come to Alkira’s CSX portal. You register. You create your users once you register with Alkira from the portal. You login. You can integrate this with your single sign-on.

Once you login, if it’s your first time you’re logging in, you can build your whole network via point-and-click user interface. You pretty much drag and drop. It’s like drawing a Visio diagram. Once you have drawn out your topology with network services, on-prem connectivity, cloud connectivity, Internet exit points, SaaS applications, you just click on provision and you wait for a few minutes. Your global unified multi-cloud network comes up.

All of this, again, is consumed as-a-service, one-click to provision; and you have your global multi-cloud network with integrated networking services. Again, I emphasize on the fact that you do all of this stuff without requiring to know much about underlying cloud constructs.

Again, if you’re connecting to AWS or Azure, if you have certain bandwidth needs for certain requirements from the scale perspective, from an availability perspective, you just give us the requirements. Since it’s a service, we deliver you the service. We make sure that the service is up. It’s highly available. It’s very redundant in nature, and again, with SLAs.

A few of the use cases are listed here on this slide. I’m talking about the global multi-cloud network. It’s global in nature. You can spin up these CXPs in multiple places across the globe. There are networking services, which we support, in each of these CXPs. They can be firewalls, load balancers, third-party services, cloud-native services, or in some cases you can use Alkira’s own services as well.

There are use cases for regional SaaS and Internet access. There are use cases which we are working with customers on where applications need to be reachable from the Internet. Applications are sitting in the cloud, but they need to be reachable from the Internet. Traffic comes in from the Internet and may need to hit multiple services, such as load balancer and firewall before traffic goes to the applications.

We also support end-to-end network segmentation, so you can extend your on-prem segmentation all the way into the cloud. Segmentation, again, is built in from ground up. It’s also as simple as just saying that these are the segments that you want, and mapping your on-prem segments to the segments which you create in Alkira’s CSX portal, and there you go.

There are use cases where we have customers with business partners who need to connect to a customer’s network. They require, in certain cases, limited access to the customer’s resources. In certain cases, there are some requirements where there might be overlapping addresses, so you can assume that service here in CXP as well.

Then, above all, cloud network visibility. You need end-to-end visibility across clouds, to clouds, from on-prem, wherever the traffic is coming in from and wherever the traffic is going to. It’s one network, regardless of how many clouds you’re connecting. So there needs to be complete visibility, just like you are used to, having visibility in your on-prem networks.

It shouldn’t matter if the end point on this multi-cloud network is an on-prem location, whether the end point is AWS VPC or Azure vNet, or whether you’re connected to GCP. These are just end points. It’s one network with complete visibility into it. Also, at the end of the day, it’s your network. You need to have full control when it comes to troubleshooting, etc.

All the troubleshooting tools are also built into the solution. All the day two operations have been simplified for you. It’s a service, so again as I said, there is no software to download. There’s nothing to run in your own environment. I’ll give you an example. If you need a new feature or functionality, it’s not like you have to get a new rev of the software. Test it out in your environment, before you deploy it.

It’s all delivered to you as-a-service. You don’t have to worry about any of those types of operations. Day two stuff is very simple, and we have made sure that our focus is always on simplifying all of this stuff. Another thing is that if you look at the UI, what we have done is we have made it very visual. What we believe is, why do things have to be complicated; especially when it comes to policies?

I’m sure many of you guys work on different types of policies day in and day out in your networks. Currently, if you look at routing policies or access control policies, it’s a nightmare to manage the number of ACLs. Those things grow into hundreds or thousands.

Here what we have done is, we have made the policies very visual as well. Everything is very visual, so it’s all visually driven. It’s all brought up in a very visual and very simple manner. It’s a hard problem to make things simple while also offering this comprehensive functionality. Here, if you need more information or if you would like to get more into details on any of these aspects of functionality, you can contact us.

So here is a brief and high-level case study of a Fortune 100 enterprise, which we are working with. If you look at the current state, the Fortune 100 enterprise was going down the colo path. They were deploying physical routers and firewalls in the colos. They were extending their MPLS into the colos. They also had the need to be in multiple regions, so they had to repeat the same thing in multiple colos, extend connectivity between colos and whatnot.

So it was taking months and months of design work, managing all the physical hardware, whatnot. From the business-needs perspective, they had the need to adopt Azure for Microsoft applications. Primarily they were in AWS before, so there was a sudden requirement to go into multiple clouds; Azure; GCP is another cloud they are going into.

When they got introduced to Alkira, they stopped all their investment in the path they were on, which was the colo path. They saw the benefits of the Alkira solution where they could spin up the CXPs in multiple regions. Again, this is delivered to them as-a-service; so for them, what used to take them months to design, to manage, to operate, now it’s a matter of minutes. They don’t have to manage any of that hardware. They don’t have to manage the services that they’re instantiating in the CXPs.

They’re using Palo Alto firewalls there. We make sure that we manage the lifecycle of Palo Altos on customers’ behalf. Since it’s a stateful firewall, you need to make sure that the flows through these firewalls in both directions are symmetric. We make sure that these Palo Alto firewalls autoscale up and down, based on the loads.

So now, what they see from the benefits is that they can do so much more with so much more simplicity and ease of operation. So these are just some of the benefits which Alkira brings to this customer, and these benefits apply to many customers out there with many of these cloud use cases

David:

All right, I think we’ve reached the point that we want to take some questions. Thank you very much, guys, for all the insights that you have provided. I’m going to stop sharing the slides for a second. All right. So thank you very much again for providing all of the insights, great stuff.We’ve been looking at the questions that you guys have been sending, and there’s a lot of questions in there. We tried to address some of them, but couldn’t get to all of them. There’s just too many of them. So searching through some of them, I just wanted to potentially read out to you, see how you guys want to address that.

Some of the questions are technical. Some of the questions are a little bit more on the business side. Again, if we didn’t get to your question, we will make sure that we will follow up with you later, after the webinar is over.

The first question we’re seeing here is – I guess it’s a customer. They’re asking: We’re using AWS Direct Connect, and we’re looking to expand into additional AWS regions. We are also looking to add Microsoft Azure into it. So I guess it’s a customer who is not just looking at AWS, but they’re looking at a multi-cloud story.

I guess the question is for Atif. Can you talk a little bit about how Alkira’s solution helps, in this case of expansion inside AWS, and the expansion across AWS and Microsoft Azure?

Atif:

Absolutely. You can certainly use your existing Direct Connect. You can use Direct Connect to come to Alkira’s CXP, which is part of the global CSX. From the CXP you can connect to multiple clouds. You can connect to Azure. You can connect to AWS. You can spin up these CXPs in multiple regions, as I said earlier.So you could be using AWS Direct Connect to come into the CXP, and from there, from the CXP, you can get to any of these clouds in one way, in a unified way. It’s a ubiquitous, global, unified network across clouds. As I said, there are multiple ways of coming into the CXP from on prem. One of them is AWS Direct Connect. I hope this answers your question.

David:

I hope it does, for whoever asked the question. All right, let me see. Another question, I think that one is also for you, Atif. We have production workloads in AWS and development workloads in GCP. So again, it’s a multi-cloud customer. The question is about security. We need to segment our AWS workloads. They’re looking for segmentation within AWS. They also have a requirement to put a firewall between the AWS and GCP.So I guess they’re looking for securing the communication between the AWS workload and the GCP workloads. So the question: How difficult is it to do it with Alkira? You mentioned the simplicity of our solution, the single-deployment. Can you talk a little bit about that segmentation within a single cloud and firewalling across multiple clouds?

Atif:

Absolutely. So it’s very simple, as I mentioned. You can connect to AWS from the CXP within the region. You can be in multiple regions. You can connect to GCP workloads from there. You can put them in different segments if you want to. Let’s say AWS VPCs can be in one segment. The other VPCs can be in a different segment.Now, inter-cloud communication, if you want that to go through a firewall, firewalls can be sitting in your CXP. Very simple policies, intent-based policies, where you pretty much say, traffic coming from or traffic between GCP and AWS, or traffic within certain segments from certain workloads needs to go through the firewall; whereas maybe traffic within the same segment, within the same cloud, doesn’t need to.

So these are all intent-based policies, very simple to provision. In fact, the way I described it, that’s the way you configure them, and that’s the way you deploy them. You don’t need to know the inside details of the policies. There is no policy language per se. So it’s as simple as that.

David:

Right, okay. That sounds good. Definitely stateful multi-cloud security is in there. All right, let’s take another one here. I think this one may be for you, Amir. I guess it’s a question about partnerships.We are an IT consultancy firm, and we have quite a high demand for cloud within our customers’ world; so looking to expand our businesses to encompass more of a cloud and a multi-cloud for a customer. Can you talk a little bit about your partner strategy?

Amir:

That’s a good question. We are a company that fundamentally believes in creating a very strong partner ecosystem, so we are not only working with consultants and boutique firms, but we are also working with large SIs and VARs and whatnot. There are a lot of service providers working with us as well, because they have trusted us over many, many years as solution providers and products that we have brought to the industry. They have also used them over many, many years.So they are very excited, and this is a global ecosystem that we are creating. So please reach out to our website and register, and we’ll get back to you with the details. We create a win-win situation for our partners. Again, it’s an ecosystem that you have to create to make sure that the customer is successful and that’s what makes all of us successful. So please reach out to us.

David:

Right. Great. Yes, of course we have the partners’ portal within our website, so just like you said, Amir, just go to www.alkira.com. Navigate to the partners section, and submit your information, and will make sure to get back to you.Good. Let’s take one more question here, again technology-related questions. This is about visibility, so Atif, I guess you mentioned quite a few times about the importance of cloud visibility or cloud-network visibility, especially when it relates to single and multi-cloud.

Somebody’s asking: We have started moving applications to AWS, but we are challenged with network visibility. Now, we are also looking to expand to Azure, and there is a different visibility aspect between AWS and Azure. The question is: How do we use the Alkira solution to get this uniform visibility across multiple clouds?

Atif:

It’s a good question. Visibility is one of the key components here, so as I mentioned, it’s a unified network. It’s a virtual cloud network. It connects to multiple clouds, but it’s one network from the customer’s perspective. So anything that goes in and out of this network, whether it’s across clouds, whether it’s from on-prem to clouds, or whether it’s cloud to Internet. Regardless of where the traffic is going and where the traffic is coming from, we provide you complete visibility. We provide you, as I mentioned earlier, deep visibility here.We recognize that it’s very, very important to make sure that there is end-to-end visibility, because without visibility, you’re just flying blind here. You get all of that from Alkira’s portal.

David:

Right, yes. Of course, the end-to-end visibility, you also mentioned troubleshooting, right? The question didn’t ask about troubleshooting, but earlier you mentioned about ability to be able to troubleshoot. Even though it’s delivered as-a-service, you may still need some degree of troubleshooting.Right, okay. This is a burning question. I think, Amir, you’d love that question. Times are tough, and everybody’s trying to tighten their belts; so can you talk a little bit about possible cost savings with deploying Alkira solution?

Amir:

Yes. Again, cost savings comes in many different areas. You can think of learning cost, to learn multiple environments and trying to put together a solution like this on your own. It is also a cost which is incurred because you have to replicate things across multiple environments. Again, you have to bring in many different tools for visibility and governance to build multi-cloud network infrastructure.This is a service that we are bringing, which standardizes and consolidates and provides a very comprehensive solution, and we’ve done cost analysis, TCO analysis, with multiple customers now. We are seeing more than 40 percent cost savings. This is not an add-on tool. This is a service, which replaces your existing multi-cloud network infrastructure.

You just use one tool to do networking across multiple environments. You bring in your connectivity from on prem into the cloud, so it complements your existing wide-area networking solutions. You bring in the traffic using those solutions into our CXP. We provide a fully integrated multi-cloud services capability, and then you have full visibility and governance and intent-based policy infrastructure built in.

So there’s a huge cost savings. We brought down the number of nodes that a customer had in a virtual environment from close to 400 to closer to 60 or so. So not only do you save dollars, but you save the pain points that you have been going through in building these complicated infrastructures across the globe.

Let me make another point here. Some of the people in the industry have been saying that SD-WAN and some existing wide-area networking technologies, are dead. I think anytime people make such claims, it becomes very challenging, because they obviously don’t have a very comprehensive picture of how things work. There are certain elements that you need on prem to work in those environments.

So, existing technologies will exist for a long, long time. This is a very complementary solution to bringing and extending your infrastructure into the cloud, where the capabilities were lacking. The majority of existing solutions bring you to the edge of the cloud, and what we have done is build the infrastructure inside the cloud to provide capabilities which are required in the cloud to scale it into the future.

Now that you are building your data centers and moving them into the cloud, a majority of your workloads are going to slowly, over time, move into the cloud. We have some customers who are at a very early stage of moving to the cloud, and other customers who have pretty much come up with a strategy to close their data centers and move everything into the cloud.

So we take that into account, and we have built a very comprehensive solution. Come to our portal and learn about it. You will be fascinated by what we are bringing to the table.

David:

All right, always inspiring, Amir. Thank you for the commentary. I think we have time to take the very last question. I’ve seen a question like that, different variations, being repeated several times. Somebody’s asking about: We have deployed workloads in AWS, and we’re using Transit Gateway for connecting our workloads.Now, as we keep on expanding our infrastructure to multiple Transit Gateways and trying to make it more global in nature, we are seeing quite a lot of limitations. Route propagation is being mentioned here. There’s visibility challenges that are mentioned here.

Atif, can you talk a little bit about how Alkira’s solution helps in these cases where people have deployed cloud-native solutions, and have encountered shortcomings? What is Alkira’s philosophy behind that?

Atif:

Absolutely. As I mentioned earlier, we have built our own infrastructure from ground up. We sit in the cloud, so it’s a network in the cloud, for the cloud. You can think of it as an overlay network over multiple cloud providers. From a limitations perspective, since everything is on our infrastructure, we take care of all of that stuff.David, I think the question is about route propagation between regions. That happens automatically. Our infrastructure, what we have built and our solution, is a fully routed solution. Routing between regions, between CXPs, happens automatically. At the same time, you extend your segmentation between regions. You extend your segmentation, as I mentioned earlier, from on-prem all the way to the cloud.

Underneath, we leverage cloud providers’ constructs, or may be leveraging cloud providers’ constructs, in many ways. Our infrastructure is on top, so from the limitations perspective, I’ll mention it again, you don’t have to worry about the cloud provider-specific limitations or constraints. For the customer, everything is at Alkira’s level.

David:

Right. Okay, well thank you very much, Atif. I think that’s all the time we have for questions. I wanted to, maybe, recap a little bit about the next steps. Please go to www.alkira.com. Check out our website. You can find a lot of details, a lot of information in there, about things that we’ve covered today.

Some of the things we did not have time to cover today, so please visit our website. Register for a demo. Request a demo. We’re happy to connect with you and provide you a comprehensive demo of our solution. Of course, if you are ready to take a first step into the cloud and multi-cloud world, you are more than welcome to register for an Alkira service and start experiencing all the things that we talked about today first-hand.

Now, we also wanted to mention: stay tuned. This is the first of many, many of the webinars that were going to be delivering to you. We’re going to try to do this in a very steady cadence. We’re going to start educating all of you about the benefits of Alkira and the technology that Alkira brings to the table. Our next webinar is going to be in May, where we’re going to talk about more of the security elements.

Then, please stay tuned for the Packet Pushers podcast, where we’re going to share with you – rather, our customers are going to share with you – their deployment stories, their success stories, how they have implemented Alkira solution, how they subscribed to Alkira service, and the benefits they’ve gotten out of that.

So those are the things to keep an eye out for. The invitations will be coming. We’ll make sure that all of it is made public on our website. So stay tuned. Visit our website for more details.

With that, I want to thank everybody for attending. I want to thank our presenters, Amir and Atif, for providing all the insights. We will see you next time. Thank you very much for attending.

Amir:
Thank you, everyone.
Atif:
Thank you.
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