Posted on Oct 19th, 2015 by Reuven Harrison

In August, Gartner analyst Simon Richard published “Effective Network Orchestration Starts by Automating Provisioning”, which we believe highlights the need for network automation as a means for agility – a top priority for the business.

He writes:

“Network automation is required to provide network agility, which in turn is required to provide datacenter agility. Increased agility is a top priority for the business, and network organizations must start to automate now.

Richard describes the benefits of network automation:

  • Increased agility
  • Increased management and operational efficiency
  • Increased availability, robustness and stability

All of these, of course, ultimately lead to cost reductions.

This practical guide starts with a simple definition of the terminology. These definitions are valuable in enabling a clear discussion of the topic. For example, network orchestration is defined as “the ability to provision network services across multiple network devices”.

Richard analyzes the different approaches to network automation including some of the currently hyped ones like SDN and DevOps. Each approach is presented with its pros and cons and its functional characteristics.

One of the six approaches is “Policy-Based Network Orchestration” – which is defined as follows:

“Policy-based network orchestration systems rely on a higher-level configuration language that describes the network in terms of availability, performance and security requirements, which can be understood by the business or application groups. The system then translates the requirements into configuration tasks that network devices execute. Some policy-based network orchestration systems are network-aware and can control the network state by manipulating the control plane based on real-time network analytics.”

This is where Tufin comes in. Richard concludes with some practical guidance which urges IT organizations to prepare for end-to-end orchestration and SDDCs explaining that the business requires IT to provision apps, not infrastructure.

network orchestration

The report helps organizations focus on achieving effective network automation. Read more about Gartner's reports on network security policy management and orchestration.

Gartner, Effective Network Orchestration Starts by Automating Provisioning, Simon Richard, 31st August 2015