FortiWAN Handbook – Introduction


Enterprises are increasingly relying on the internet for delivery of critical components for everyday business operations. Any delays or interruptions in connectivity can easily result in reduced productivity, lost business opportunities and a damaged reputation. Maintaining a reliable and efficient internet connection to ensure the operation of critical applications is therefore key to the success of the enterprise.

FortiWAN is a separate and discrete hardware appliance with exclusive operating system, specifically designed to intelligently balance internet and intranet traffic across multiple WAN connections, providing additional low-cost incoming and outgoing bandwidth for the enterprise and substantially increased connection reliability. FortiWAN is supported by a user-friendly UI and a flexible policy-based performance management system.

FortiWAN provides a unique solution that offers comprehensive multi-WAN management that keeps costs down as well as keeping customers and users connected.

Product Benefits

FortiWAN is the most robust, cost-effective way to:

  • Increase the performance of your:
  • Internet access l Public-to-Enterprise access l Site-to-site private intranet
  • Lower Operating Costs l Increase your network reliability l Enable Cloud / Web 2.0 Applications l Monitor Network Performance

Increase Network Performance

FortiWAN increases network performance in three key areas:

l Access to Internet resources from the Enterprise l Access to Enterprise resources from the Internet l Creation of Enterprise Intranet connections between sites

FortiWAN intelligently aggregates multiple broadband and/or leased access lines to significantly increase Internet access performance. FortiWAN makes reacting to network demands fast, flexible and inexpensive. FortiWAN transforms underperforming networks into responsive, cost-effective and easy-to-manage business assets.

FortiWAN load balances Internet service requests from Enterprise users, optimally distributing traffic across all available access links. FortiWAN’s 7 different Load Balancing algorithms provide the flexibility to maximize productivity from any network scenario.

FortiWAN gives you high-performance inter-site connectivity without the need to lease expensive links such as T1 and T3. FortiWAN aggregates multiple low-cost Internet access links to create site-to-site Virtual Private Line Product Benefits     Introduction

(VPL) Tunnels for LAN-like performance between company locations. By using multiple carriers and media, reliability of these VPL Tunnels can exceed that of traditional engineered carrier links.

Substantially Lower Operating Costs

Once bandwidth requirements exceed traditional asymmetrical Internet access services (like ADSL) there is a very high jump in bandwidth cost to engineered, dedicated access facilities like DS-1/DS-3. Even Metro Ethernet is a large cost increment where it is available. Adding shared Internet access links is substantially less expensive and delivery is substantially faster.

Traditional point-to-point private lines for company intranets are still priced by distance and capacity. Replacing or augmenting dedicated point-to-point services with Virtual Private Line Tunnels reduces costs substantially while increasing available bandwidth and reliability.

FortiWAN makes low-cost network access links behave and perform like specially-engineered carrier services at a fraction of the cost.

l Deploy DSL services and get DS-3/STM-1-like speed and reliability while waiting for the carrier to pull fiber. l Add and remove bandwidth for seasonal requirements quickly and easily. l Increase bandwidth to web servers and use multiple ISPs without BGP4 management issues.

Increase Network Reliability

Businesses can no longer afford Internet downtime. FortiWAN provides fault tolerance for both inbound and outbound IP traffic to ensure a stable and dependable network. Even multiple link failures, while reducing available bandwidth, will not stop traffic. By using diverse media (fiber, copper, wireless) and multiple ISPs (Telco, Cableco, 4G), FortiWAN can deliver better than carrier-class “5-9’s” reliability.

FortiWAN can be deployed in High Availability mode with fully redundant hardware for increased reliability. Larger FortiWAN models also feature redundant power supplies for further protection from hardware failures.

Enable Cloud / Web 2.0 Applications

Traditional WAN Optimization products expect that all users connect only to Headquarters servers and Internet gateways over dedicated, symmetric leased lines, but that is already “yesterday’s” architecture. Today users want to mix HQ connectivity with direct Cloud access to Web 2.0 applications like email, collaborative documentation, ERP, CRM and online backup.

FortiWAN gives you the flexibility to customize your network, giving you complete control. Direct cloud-based applications to links optimized for them and reduce the bandwidth demand on expensive dedicated circuits. Combine access links and/or dedicated circuits into Virtual Private Line Tunnels that will support the fastest video streaming or video conferencing servers that Headquarters can offer.

FortiWAN is designed for easy deployment and rapid integration into any existing network topology.

Monitor Network Performance

FortiWAN provides comprehensive monitoring and reporting tools to ensure your network is running at peak efficiency. With the built-in storage and database, FortiWAN’s Reports function provides historical detail and reporting over longer periods of time, so that it not only allows management to react to network problems, but to plan network capacity, avoiding unnecessary expense while improving network performance.

FortiWAN is managed via a powerful Web User Interface. Configuration changes are instantly stored without the need to re-start the system. Configuration files can be backed-up and restored remotely. Traffic measurements, alarms, logs and other management data are stored for trend analysis and management overview.

This entry was posted in Administration Guides, FortiWAN and tagged on by .

About Mike

Michael Pruett, CISSP has a wide range of cyber-security and network engineering expertise. The plethora of vendors that resell hardware but have zero engineering knowledge resulting in the wrong hardware or configuration being deployed is a major pet peeve of Michael's. This site was started in an effort to spread information while providing the option of quality consulting services at a much lower price than Fortinet Professional Services. Owns PacketLlama.Com (Fortinet Hardware Sales) and Office Of The CISO, LLC (Cybersecurity consulting firm).

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