SD-WAN Configuration Elements

SD-WAN configuration elements interrelate to allow the firewall to select the best path to an SD-WAN.
The elements of an SD-WAN configuration work together, allowing you to:
  • Group physical Ethernet interfaces that share a common destination into a logical SD-WAN interface.
  • Specify link speeds.
  • Specify the thresholds at which a deteriorating path (or brownout or blackout) to an SD-WAN warrants selecting a new best path.
  • Specify the method of selecting that new best path.
This view indicates the relationships between elements at a glance.
The goal of an SD-WAN configuration is to control which links your traffic takes by specifying the VPN tunnels or direct internet access (DIA) that certain applications or services take from a branch to a hub or from a branch to the internet. You group paths so that if one path deteriorates, the firewall selects a new best path.
  • A
    name of your choice identifies a link; you apply the Tag to the link (interface) by applying an Interface Profile to the interface, as the red arrow indicates. A link can have only one Tag. The two yellow arrows indicate that a Tag is referenced in the Interface Profile and the Traffic Distribution profile. Tags allow you to control the order that interfaces are used for traffic distribution. Tags allow Panorama to systematically configure many firewall interfaces with SD-WAN functionality.
  • An
    SD-WAN Interface Profile
    specifies the Tag that you apply to the physical interface, and also specifies the type of Link that interface is (ADSL/DSL, cable modem, Ethernet, fiber, LTE/3G/4G/5G, MPLS, microwave/radio, satellite, WiFi, or other). The Interface Profile is also where you specify the maximum upload and download speeds (in Mbps) of the ISP’s connection. You can also change whether the firewall monitors the path frequently or not; the firewall monitors link types appropriately by default.
  • A Layer3 Ethernet
    with an IPv4 address can support SD-WAN functionalities. You apply an SD-WAN Interface Profile to this interface (red arrow) to indicate the characteristics of the interface. The blue arrow indicates that physical Interfaces are referenced and grouped in a virtual SD-WAN Interface.
  • A virtual
    SD-WAN Interface
    is a VPN tunnel or DIA group of one or more interfaces that constitute a numbered, virtual SD-WAN Interface to which you can route traffic. The paths belonging to an SD-WAN Interface all go to the same destination WAN and are all the same type (either DIA or VPN tunnel). (Tag A and Tag B indicate that physical interfaces for the virtual interface can have different tags.)
  • A
    Path Quality Profile
    specifies maximum latency, jitter, and packet loss thresholds. Exceeding a threshold indicates that the path has deteriorated and the firewall needs to select a new path to the target. A sensitivity setting of high, medium, or low lets you indicate to the firewall which path monitoring parameter is more important for the applications to which the profile applies. The green arrow indicates that you reference a Path Quality Profile in one or more SD-WAN Policy Rules; thus, you can specify different thresholds for rules applied to packets having different applications, services, sources, destinations, zones, and users.
  • A
    Traffic Distribution Profile
    specifies how the firewall determines a new best path if the current preferred path exceeds a path quality threshold. You specify which Tags the distribution method uses to narrow its selection of a new path; hence, the yellow arrow points from Tags to the Traffic Distribution profile. A Traffic Distribution profile specifies the distribution method for the rule.
  • The preceding elements come together in
    SD-WAN Policy Rules
    . The purple arrow indicates that you reference a Path Qualify Profile and a Traffic Distribution profile in a rule, along with packet applications/services, sources, destinations, and users to specifically indicate when and how the firewall performs application-based SD-WAN path selection for a packet not belonging to a session. (You can also reference a
    SaaS Quality Profile
    and an
    Error Correction Profile
    in an SD-WAN policy rule.)
Now that you understand the relationship between the elements, review the traffic distribution methods and then Plan Your SD-WAN Configuration.

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