This section describes VMware SD-WAN capabilities.

Dynamic Multi-path Optimization

VMware Dynamic Multi-path Optimization is comprised of automatic link monitoring, dynamic link steering and on-demand remediation.

Link Steering and Remediation

Dynamic, application aware per-packet link steering is performed automatically based on the business priority of the application, embedded knowledge of network requirements of the application, and the real-time capacity and performance of each link. On-demand mitigation of individual link degradation through forward error correction, jitter buffering and negative acknowledgment proxy also protects the performance of priority and network sensitive applications. Both the dynamic per-packet link steering and on-demand mitigation combine to deliver robust, sub-second blocked and limited protection to improve application availability, performance and end user experience.

Cloud VPN

Cloud VPN is a 1-click, site-to-site, VPNC-compliant, IPSec VPN to connect VMware and Non VMware SD-WAN Sites while delivering real-time status and the health of the sites. The Cloud VPN establishes dynamic edge-to-edge communication for all branches based on service level objectives and application performance. Cloud VPN also delivers secure connectivity across all branches with PKI scalable key management. New branches join the VPN network automatically with access to all resources in other branches, enterprise data centers, and 3rd party data centers, like Amazon AWS.

Multi-source Inbound QoS

VMware classifies 3000+ applications enabling smart control. Out-of-the-box defaults set the multi-source inbound Quality of Service (QoS) parameters for different application types with IT required only to establish application priority. Knowledge of network requirements for different application types, automatic link capacity measurements and dynamic flow monitoring enables automation of QoS configurations and bandwidth allocations.


VMware delivers stateful and context-aware (application, user, device) integrated application aware firewall with granular control of sub-applications, support for protocol-hopping applications – such as Skype and other peer-to-peer applications (e.g., disable Skype video and chat, but allow Skype audio). The secure firewall service is user- and device OS-aware with the ability to separate voice, video, data, and compliance traffic. Policies for BYOD devices (such as Apple iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac OS) on the corporate network are easily controlled.

Network Service Insertion

The VMware Solution supports a platform to host multiple virtualized network functions to eliminate single-function appliances and reduce branch IT complexity. VMware service-chains traffic from the branch to both cloud-based and enterprise regional hub services, with assured performance, security, and manageability. Branches leverage consolidated security and network services, including those from partners like Zscaler and Websense. Using a simple click-to-enable interface, services can be inserted in the cloud and on-premise with application specific policies.


SD-WAN Edge appliances automatically authenticate, connect, and receive configuration instructions once they are connected to the Internet in a zero-touch deployment. They deliver a highly available deployment with SD-WAN Edge redundancy protocol and integrate with the existing network with support for OSPF routing protocol and benefit from dynamic learning and automation.

Overlay Flow Control

The SD-WAN Edge learns routes from adjacent routers through OSPF and BGP. It sends the learned routes to the Gateway/Controller. The Gateway/Controller acts like a route reflector and sends the learned routes to other SD-WAN Edges. The Overlay Flow Control (OFC) enables enterprise-wide route visibility and control for ease of programming and for full and partial overlay.


VMware supports inbound/outbound filters to OSPF neighbors, OE1/OE2 route types, MD5 authentication. Routes learned through OSPF will be automatically redistributed to the controller hosted in the cloud or on-premise.


VMware supports inbound/outbound filters and the filter can be set to Deny, or optionally adding/changing the BGP attribute to influence the path selection, i.e. RFC 1998 community, MED, AS-Path prepend, and local preference.


Network segmentation is an important feature for both enterprises and service providers. In the most basic form, segmentation provides network isolation for management and security reasons. Most common forms of segmentation are VLANs for L2 and VRFs for L3.

Typical Use Cases for Segmentation:

  • Line of Business Separation: Engineering, HR etc. for Security/Audit
  • User Data Separation: Guest, PCI, Corporate traffic separation
  • Enterprise uses overlapping IP addresses in different VRFs

However, the legacy approach is limited to a single box or two physically connected devices. To extend the functionality, segmentation information must be carried across the network.

VMware enables end-to-end segmentation. When the packet traverses through the Edge, the Segment ID is added to the packet and is forwarded to the Hub and cloud Gateway, allowing network service isolation from the Edge to the cloud and data center. This provides the ability to group prefixes into a unique routing table, making the business policy segment aware.


In Dynamic Routing, SD-WAN Edge learns routes from adjacent routers through OSPF or BGP. The SD-WAN Orchestrator maintains all the dynamically learned routes in a global routing table called the Overlay Flow Control. The Overlay Flow Control allows management of dynamic routes in the case of "Overlay Flow Control sync" and "change in Inbound/Outbound filtering configuration." The change in inbound filtering for a prefix from IGNORE to LEARN would fetch the prefix from the Overlay Flow Control and install into the Unified routing table.

For more information, see Configure Dynamic Routing with OSPF or BGP.

Business Policy Framework

Quality of Service (QoS), resource allocations, link/path steering, and error correction are automatically applied based on business policies and application priorities. Orchestrate traffic based on transport groups defined by private and public links, policy definition, and link characteristics.