We just raised a $30M Series A: Read our story
UB
Solution Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Reseller
Top 5
Good application-level routing and easy to manage with a single dashboard, but it should include a complete firewall

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the application-level routing."
  • "This solution should include a fully functional firewall at no extra charge."

What is our primary use case?

We are a solution provider and this is one of the products that we implement for our clients.

One of our customers has approximately 100 branches that were linked together using Cisco SD-WAN in multiple phases. In the first phase, they started with 40 branches. In the head office, they have two MPLS links and two internet links. In each branch, they have one of each. Before implementing this solution, they could not do both things at the same time.

How has it helped my organization?

With Cisco, you can optimize and design the solution in the way you want. For example, you can have 1,000 branches with three or four data centers, and if you can reroute the traffic from one branch to the nearest data center in order to inspect the traffic.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the application-level routing. One of our clients used this solution to route VOIP and video calls using MPLS.

The single dashboard makes the management very easy.

What needs improvement?

This solution has a built-in firewall that handles URL filtering and functionality, but you have to buy other cisco services like, Umbrella. Some of the customers would rather just use Fortinet or Palo Alto. This solution should include a fully functional firewall at no extra charge. At this time it supports layers three, four, and five, but it needs support for a level seven firewall.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Cisco SD-WAN is stable. There might be minor bugs in a few of the features, but overall, the product is stable and the customers are happy with it.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This solution is highly scalable. We have heard that you can have 10,000 or 20,000 servers.

Our clients are medium-scale customers, as opposed to really large enterprises. They are retail stores, organizations in the hospitality industry, and pharmaceutical companies.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We have also worked with Meraki SD-WAN, but the choice of solution depends on the customer's size and requirements. Meraki is for smaller clients. For example, Meraki only supports two landings, whereas Cisco supports more than that.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not that easy, although there is training that is available for it. It will take time to create templates and the other configuration that needs to be done.

it will take between five and ten days to complete the basic, initial setup, which includes changing the IP addresses. After that, you can migrate two or three branches a day if you have the devices.

What other advice do I have?

My advice for anybody who is researching this solution is to consider the size of the environment. If they have 100 to 150 branches, then they should also look into other solutions such as VeloCloud by VMware.

I would rate this solution a seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
AP
Senior Network Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
MSP
Good user experience and good security features, but can be buggy

Pros and Cons

  • "The user experience is pretty good."
  • "When it comes to adding more security features, you need to add more RAM."

What is most valuable?

The security of the solution is pretty good.

We like the user interface. It's fairly easy to navigate.

The user experience is pretty good.

We've found that the solution is easy to deploy.

The solution is very popular with many vendors.

Overall, our experience has been very positive. So far, so good. We don't have many complaints about its capabilities.

What needs improvement?

We've worked with BetterCloud, and found the security to be better than what is offered by Cisco. The user interface is nicer as well. Cisco should look at what they are doing and try to replicate it a bit.

When it comes to adding more security features, you need to add more RAM.

The pricing could be a bit better. When a customer transfers from a traditional WAN to SD-WAN, the subscription price is one big problem for them.

The solution is a bit buggy, which makes it slightly unstable.

The provisioning could be easier during deployment. Some vendors say they can handle provisioning, however, it differs from vendor to vendor.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been working with the solution for more than one year at this point. It is likely closer to two years now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We do find that the solution can be a bit buggy. The more complex the setup is, the more bugs we seem to find. There seem to be many bugs in the software.

The web GUI is easy to deploy, however, when we deploy a whole network for a customer, we can see how they run inside the GUI. We've had to open cases with technical support to help us deal with issues that arise.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have medium-sized clients, largely based in the retail industry.

How are customer service and technical support?

We've dealt with technical support in the past to help us deal with a few bugs. They are pretty professional.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I'm working for a partner in Vietnam. They have many vendors, including Aruba and Meraki Cisco.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup isn't too complex. It's pretty straightforward. A company shouldn't have too many issues with the setup.

I've done it a few times at this point, and every time, day by day, it gets easier and easier.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The solution is a bit expensive. There's a big jump from WAN to SD-WAN which customers don't like.

What other advice do I have?

We are a Cisco partner.

I've worked with a variety of different versions of the solution. I'm not always using the latest version.

Cisco is a very professional organization. They offer good support.

I would rate the solution at a seven out of ten.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
Learn what your peers think about Cisco SD-WAN. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: November 2021.
552,136 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Steve Roy
Senior Director, Network Engineering at a tech vendor with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Securely connects to our hybrid cloud using transit VPCs and cloud on-ramp for fast deployments

Pros and Cons

  • "The most useful feature for our organization is the combination of on-prem and cloud-based deployments. We connect securely to our hybrid cloud using transit VPCs and cloud on-ramp for fast deployments."
  • "The inexpensive Viptela hardware may be replaced with overpriced Cisco routers. This would be a tragic mistake for Cisco as the lightweight commodity platform built by Viptela is the reason to own this solution."

What is our primary use case?

Full replacement of office to office, office to data center, and data center to data center MPLS and private lines with commodity Internet and SD-WAN.

How has it helped my organization?

80% reduction in WAN costs.

New sites can be onboarded in hours or days versus many months with carrier based technology. 

What is most valuable?

The most useful feature for our organization is the combination of on-prem and cloud-based deployments. We connect securely to our hybrid cloud using transit VPCs and cloud on-ramp for fast deployments. We have recently started using deep packet inspection allowing the use of the transit path as the firewall instead of putting firewalls on both ends of the mesh.

What needs improvement?

The inexpensive Viptela hardware may be replaced with overpriced Cisco routers. This would be a tragic mistake for Cisco as the lightweight commodity platform built by Viptela is the reason to own this solution. 

For how long have I used the solution?

Since it was Viptela in 2017.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is extremely stable. You can set it and forget it, if that is your thing. There are a lot of improvements with each full version release. As with all things Cisco, if you have the chance to wait for a few months before deploying the latest release, do it. They can be buggy for the first few months. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is very scalable. We have it deployed to 23 countries, AWS, Azure, and our data centers. 

How are customer service and technical support?

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

MPLS, P2P lines and multi-point VPN mesh. These were either too expensive or required too much operational overhead. 

How was the initial setup?

The team at Viptela,and subsequently at Cisco, were extremely engaged and ready to help ensure we had a successful deployment. The concept of an overlay and underlay can be intimidating if you are used to conventional networks, but you will get used to it. 

What about the implementation team?

We deployed it ourselves with our own network engineers. 

What was our ROI?

80 percent reduction in WAN costs. There are no MPLS or P2P circuits left in the organization. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Cisco, Citrix, and Fortinet.

What other advice do I have?

Map out all of the applications that use your WAN today. If you have assets like physical phone systems or dedicated VPN devices that are not ready to be off-the-books, start the project anyway. As contacts and hardware become end of life, onboard those sites. You will have a full mesh in no time. If you wait for all of your existing technology to be end of life, you are missing the point.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
AJ
Data Center Engineer at Emerging Communication Limited
Real User
Top 20
Scalable, has good technical support, and the policy configuration manager is helpful

Pros and Cons

  • "So far, the feature that I like best is the policy configuration manager."
  • "It would be very helpful if we had better access to a knowledge base, or online documentation, to help both us and our customers learn to use this solution."

What is our primary use case?

I recently provided Cisco SD-WAN to one of my customers for the first time. This customer had a traditional network and had been happy with the conversion to a software-defined WAN.

How has it helped my organization?

The introduction of Cisco SD-WAN, has make some greate change to our organization in terms of acquiring new knowledge as we are a cisco premium partner, we have to take some training on SD-WAN to understand the knowledge so that it will be easy for us to sell and implement to the end customer

What is most valuable?

So far, the feature that I like best is the policy configuration manager. It is better than performing a manual configuration.

What needs improvement?

It would be very helpful if we had better access to a knowledge base, or online documentation, to help both us and our customers learn to use this solution.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with Cisco SD-WAN and doing online training for the past year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Cisco SD-WAN is a stable network solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This solution is super scalable. Most of our clients are midsize and enterprise-level organizations. These include banks, social security funds, educational institutions, government departments, community groups, and agencies. 

How are customer service and technical support?

I have not contacted Cisco support specifically about SD-WAN, but I have dealt with them on other occasions and they are good. I would rate them a seven out of ten. Overall, I am satisfied with the support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Most of our customer using traditional WAN technologies and we are the one configuring and deploying those solution, now we are on the way of educating them the importance of SD-WAN and finally implenting it

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is somewhat complex, although we are currently learning about this solution. In our country, most of the customers do not know much about this type of technology, and we are the ones who are propagating Cisco SD-WAN. When it comes to the setup, it is not like a traditional, manual configuration.

What about the implementation team?

Level of expertise is good as mos to cisco engineer are certified in specific area 

What was our ROI?

Not yet calculated

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Setup cost is reasonably standard as it gives a complete WAN link utilization with perfomance of QoS

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Yes SD-WAN offered with VMware

What other advice do I have?

This is a good product and I totally recommend it.

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
DR
Vice President Of Services at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Scalable with good visibility but needs native connectivity into the major cloud providers

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution can scale. We haven't had any issues doing so."
  • "Technical support could be more helpful and responsive."

What is our primary use case?

The solution is primarily just for software-defined WAN or WAN edge solutions. We use it to connect to data centers.

What is most valuable?

All the features that they have in there have been great. The solution offers good quality of service, visibility, connectivity, and security. It's all of that stuff that makes it good. That is what's required.

Cisco is finding its footing in that area, and they're getting better.

For our team, the installation is pretty straightforward.

The solution can scale. We haven't had any issues doing so.

What needs improvement?

The quality could always continuously improve. For example, we've had stability concerns in the past.

Native connectivity into the major cloud providers would be ideal.

Often, the solution does require a specialized team to come in and assist with the initial setup.

Technical support could be more helpful and responsive. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been dealing with the solution for three or four years at this point. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution could be more stable. There are issues that they've had to deal with.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution seems to be scalable so far. For all the opportunities we've been involved with, it's been good and we haven't hit a wall.

How are customer service and technical support?

We do deal with technical support from time to time. Their tech support could be better. We are not 100% satisfied with the level of service they offer.

How was the initial setup?

For us, the implementation is easy, as we are trained to handle it. The product usually requires somebody like us to come in there and help customers through this.

Deployment times vary depending on the client and the environment. It depends on how big, the opportunity, how many sites, how many branches, et cetera. All of that stuff comes into play.

What about the implementation team?

We assist our clients with the implementation process.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I can't speak to the costs associated with the product. We get involved with just the installations, that's all.

What other advice do I have?

We're a service partner. As implementors, we install all versions. Usually, however, when we get involved, it's always the latest version that we are installing.

I'd advise users to understand what they're getting. It's a good idea to probably do a POC to see it and make sure it meets all the requirements that the company is looking for before buying in completely.

I'd rate the solution at a six out of ten.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
Flag as inappropriate
Jonathan Arteaga
Pre-Sale System Engineer SOLA & NOLA at Logicalis Latam
Reseller
Easy to setup, good support that is responsive, and integrates well with other Cisco products

Pros and Cons

  • "It's a complete solution with many security features."
  • "Customers require features that are secure for endpoints, on-premises, and for the cloud."

What is our primary use case?

We are resellers and integrators.

What is most valuable?

It's a complete solution with many security features.

It integrates well with other Cisco solutions.

What needs improvement?

Customers require features that are secure for endpoints, on-premises, and for the cloud.

We could provision Cisco Umbrella to respond to the security requirements.

They need to make provisions in the platform cloud with tools. In the cloud environment, it is very easy to enable the solution with Umbrella.

They should configure to provision other devices and many endpoints to deploy the SD-WAN with security.

I would like a feature included for the prevention and inspection of data to implement. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with Cisco SD-WAN for three years.

We are using the Viptela version.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We had issues with the stability only one time when we integrated Viptella SD-WAN with Cisco Umbrella. After reading all of the documentation, we have not had any issues with the stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Cisco SD-WAN is scalable.

How are customer service and technical support?

Cisco technical support is very good. They are responsive to my questions and send me all of the information needed.

They respond quickly.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We are also using Meraki.

Meraki is more suited to small companies, whereas Cisco is more for larger enterprise companies.

How was the initial setup?

We have a hybrid deployment. We have clients who prefer the cloud and others who want an on-premises deployment.

The initial setup was straightforward. It was easy.

The time for deployment depends on the size of the company and its requirements. There are many factors. It can take two months to six months to complete.

What about the implementation team?

We have a team of five people. One project manager, two specialist engineers, and two basic engineers, who maintain this solution.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Cisco is more expensive than FortiGate.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We also evaluated Fortinet FortiGate for our clients. For customers, it is mainly a decision based on pricing and technical options.

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend this solution to others who are interested in using it. Technical support is very strong and provides high-level assistance. They have knowledgeable technicians with engineers present.

Overall, it's a very good solution.

I would rate Cisco SD-WAN a nine out of ten. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Reseller
Flag as inappropriate
NP
Network Analyst at a real estate/law firm with 1-10 employees
Real User
Top 5
A solid and reliable router that satisfies our needs for access to network gateway

Pros and Cons

  • "The regular net routing is a good feature."
  • "The solution could have a better web interface to simplify changing configurations."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is for the web gateway and VPN server and for access list control. We basically use the solution as a minimal requirement for the network gateway. We have about 50 users. I work as a network analyst and we're vendors, not a direct partner of Cisco. 

What is most valuable?

The regular net routing is a good feature. It's not just good for routing although like a lot of things it isn't linked to anything else.

What needs improvement?

On its own the product does what it's expected to do but if you're looking for more features you'd need to move to a dedicated firewall like the ISA firewall. There's something a little inconvenient and old style about it. 

The solution could have a better web interface to simplify changing configurations or see some statistics. I think the main weakness of the Cisco product is the user interface, I'd like to see things more clearly. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for five or six years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is one of the better features. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is somewhat limited, especially from the technical side. It's just a gateway with some routing and we don't use any dynamic routing. There's nothing fancy and the scalability is enough for our needs. 

How are customer service and technical support?

Cisco is always good with technical support, it's easy and the contact is fast when you really need it. 

How was the initial setup?

Initial setup is a little difficult but more or less straightforward. We have an older version which is not as flexible. 

What about the implementation team?

It took us one day to implement and we didn't use any advanced features so it was quite quick. We migrated the set-up from the old device and put it on the new one. They're both on the same platform. We did the implementation ourselves and we have one staff member involved with maintenance. We're currently looking to switch our internet gateway so I'm not sure how long this situation will last. We're looking for a provider so we can outsource the network. 

What other advice do I have?

There's not much advice I can give other than to suggest that people get familiar with using the command line.

I would rate this product an eight out of 10 because it has good reliability. We've rarely had any problems with it.  

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
AR
Network Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
An easy to use solution for replacing existing routers and removing costly MPLS

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution is good to use and easy to handle and manage from the centralized location or from the cloud."
  • "Better pricing and greater security would be nice to see."

What is our primary use case?

The solution allows us to replace the existing routers and to remove the costly MPLS.

What is most valuable?

The solution is good to use and easy to handle and manage from the centralized location or from the cloud.

This means that no engineer need visit the site to do configurations and it addresses maintenance and upgrade issues, something which frees us up to accomplish more. 

What needs improvement?

The cost of the solution is very high, when taking into account the customer location and the existence of a single router for routing purposes and security, with a single firewall and license. The license should be cheaper. 

Better pricing and greater security would be nice to see. 

We could replace the solution with Viptela web access and make use of the broadband connectivity.

The security features should also be addressed, such as that which Palo Alto or Check Point provide for the firewall, in which the SD-WAN boxes would contain the same kind of firewall features. This would be great.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Cisco SD-Wan for nearly two years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable. This is based on the bandwidth, how the customer makes use of the internet.

Perhaps we will increase usage in the future. 

How are customer service and technical support?

We are satisfied with customer support. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Prior to going with the solution we made use of Silver Peak SD-WAN. 

How was the initial setup?

The installation is easy. Within five minutes we can install one Viptela box in the branch location.

Once there is internet connectivity, the management of the solution by the IT administrator from the branch office or the headquarters is easy.

What about the implementation team?

The installation can be done independently. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?


The license consists of an annual fee. 

The price could be better. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I don't know if we evaluated Meraki before going with Cisco SD-WAN. I don't have that much hands-on experience with the other SD-WAN, but I know a bit about the Silver Peak SD-WAN solutions.

What other advice do I have?

We did implementation at the various customer sites and handed things over to them.

We use the solution in an organizational framework and there are nearly 130 users who are doing so.

The solution is recommended for Cisco Viptela. It's great.

I rate Cisco SD-WAN as a nine out of ten. 

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Integrator
Flag as inappropriate
Buyer's Guide
Download our free Cisco SD-WAN Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.