Nibbles & Bits

IPAM Solution Shootout: Appliances vs. the Cloud

by | June 2, 2013

IPAM solution cloud computing

Enterprises that still manage their IP addresses manually, using spreadsheets and the like, can reduce network complexity, improve service levels and greatly increase the productivity of their network administrators by automating their IP address management, But are they better off rolling out an appliance-based IP address management (IPAM) system or a Cloud-based software platform?

Here are six reasons why most enterprises would be much better off with a software-based IPAM solution delivered through the Cloud:

1. Much faster deployment

Appliances must be rolled out, configured, and tested one at a time, box by box, with the number of boxes depending on the size of your network and the number of subnets. On the other hand, once implemented, a Cloud-based IPAM system offers immediate network-wide availability.

2. Network-wide management

Appliances are geared toward provisioning silos of proprietary hardware infrastructures, such as those that commonly exist in many enterprises that have expanded their network in an ad hoc manner over a number of years. Software-based IPAM is designed from the ground up to address complex emerging protocols, such as IPv6 and DNSSEC, which are deployed across the network.

3.Customizable functionality

Compared with software-based IPAM, IPAM appliances are inherently more rigid in their range of operations. Functions such as address labeling and tagging are less customizable and more limited in their scope. In addition, support for complex protocols, like IPv6 and DNSSEC, may require more than just a software upgrade, necessitating new and more powerful hardware as well. This is especially true if network functions need to be customized.

4.Customizable workflow

Instead of forcing the service provider’s workflow to adapt to the provisioning system, software-based provisioning can adapt to the service provider’s workflow. Tasks can be laid out and ordered based on business priorities, and the workflow will always conform to the way the network is actually managed.

5. Comprehensive auditing

Because it can be configured for network-wide management, Cloud-based IPAM provides full tracking and a complete audit trail for all IP address changes for all subnets. Backtracking, in case of conflicts, becomes relatively simple, since administrators have full visibility into who changed what and when. The audit trail also makes it much simpler to demonstrate compliance with regulatory and corporate governance requirements.

6. SaaS-based implementations

Cloud-based IPAM can be delivered through a multi-tenant SaaS model, giving meaning your company gets all of the benefits without having to invest in extensive new hardware or dipping into the CAPEX budget. The system can be scaled up or down on demand, but you never have to pay for more capacity than you require at any given point in time. . Ideally, the software should minimize proprietary software requirements by using industry standard technologies such as Linux, Apache, MySQL and php (LAMP).

Compared with hardware- or appliance-based provisioning systems, Cloud-based IPAM is much more flexible, saving businesses considerable time and money through greater productivity and enhanced levels of service.

How does your company manage its IP addresses now, and do you plan to manage them one year from now?

“We decided to move our rather complex IP address and DHCP management process to ProVision and it has worked out great for us!! The team at 6connect were very flexible and went above and beyond to accommodate our requirements and helped to make the migration as smooth and hitch free as possible. Kudos to the team @ 6connect!”

Premkumar Subramaniam
Head of R&D
viewquest

“We are excited to be partnering with 6connect to leverage their technology and talent. We particularly admire their long-standing IPv6 contributions and their ability to service and support customers in this area, some who are the largest service provider in the world. The 6connect executive leadership team and technical team are great to work with and we look forward to many partnered projects to help customers address their Cloud, IoT and Security needs with IPv6. Automation, workflow and orchestration are critical to the success of most of these projects and 6connect is well positioned to help our mutual customers in those areas.”

Ed Horley
Co-Founder & CEO
HexaBulid

“Enterprises can struggle managing purposefully segmented DDI architectures with any agility. Our partnership with 6connect empowers customers with complex infrastructures to move faster to service the business while consolidating visibility and control over their estate.”

Andrew Wertkin
Chief Strategy Officer,
BlueCat

“6connect’s approach to automation addresses quite a few challenges with physical and virtual networks – how to improve the agility of your current network infrastructure without sacrificing reliability and adoption of future network technologies.”

Pär Lange
Investment Director
SwissCom

“A customer is looking for an integrated solution from a single vendor for both IPAM and DNS. Through the 6connect reseller program, Secure64 is able to offer the most secure DNS solutions married to a unique combination of IPAM and resource provisioning that customers want. It’s a marriage made in heaven.”

Mark Beckett
VP of Marketing
Secure64

“A huge benefit of working with the 6connect team is that they devoted a lot of resources to get our products integrated so we had the turnkey solution that we could take to market. It was very easy to work with their team to get product integrated and successfully launched.”

Mark Beckett
VP of Marketing
Secure64

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