Today, virtualization is a must to make IT infrastructures more agile and scalable. But while most companies are already using server virtualization, networks are often still trapped in hardware. This setup slows down progress and makes better protection more difficult. Hardware-bound network services are complex to manage, less scalable and more cost-intensive. Every single component must be configured by hand down to the smallest detail and expanding or rebuilding the network takes a lot of time. Firewalls ensure security in the network. But today you no longer only need them on the perimeter, but also in the internal area. Ideally, each individual system would be surrounded by its own protective wall. In hardware-bound networks that would be unaffordable and highly complex.
Virtualized networks make the impossible possible. They decouple the network services switching, routing, load balancing and firewalling from the hardware and make them available as software. That doesn't mean you don't need any hardware at all - the existing devices will continue to be used. However, your only task now is to transport the data packets. All intelligence and control migrates to the software and can therefore be managed separately from the hardware. The virtual network forms an overlay network: a virtual layer that is simply placed over the physical network. This has many advantages. Administrators can manage all components in the network from a central console and automate processes. This enables them to plan, set up or remodel networks faster. Above all, however, virtualization makes it possible to implement advanced security concepts.