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An intuitive approach to visualizing, monitoring, and verifying your multi-cloud estate in a single pane of glass

USE CASE

Prove network innocence in seconds, not days.
Ensure consistent policy application from on-prem through the cloud.
Visualize your global network to a single device configuration with a mouse-click.

Most organizations have several cloud accounts that span multiple cloud platforms like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure — and that’s not counting the hundreds or even thousands of cloud apps they have in use or in development across the organization.

While the cloud delivers on the promise of agility, it also creates challenges in understanding traffic behavior from the point of access, within and between clouds. IT shops need a detailed source of truth that’s always up to date to manage their enterprise computing estate and ensure policy compliance.

Cloud providers offer visibility and monitoring tools that are specific to their platform. These tools are powerful stand-alone applications, but they’re not designed to work together and can’t provide a comprehensive view of your estate. Also, each cloud provider has its own nomenclature and platform visualization, making it difficult for any one person to understand all the tools. This elongates the time it takes to prove network innocence in the event of an incident and makes it nearly impossible to ensure carefully crafted networking policies are properly extended to the cloud.

At this point, you may be thinking, “Tell me something I don’t know.” Here it is: with the Forward Enterprise platform from Forward Networks, you can now visualize and monitor your entire estate in an always up-to-date, vendor-agnostic model where data is presented in an intuitive, actionable format — in a single pane of glass. 

Finally, Real Visibility to Help Maximize Your Cloud Investments

The Forward Enterprise platform provides search, verify, and visualization capabilities for on-premises environments and multi-cloud estates that include platforms such as AWS, GCP, and Microsoft Azure. Your IT teams gain a single source of truth in a single console that lets them view the entire environment from a global level down to a specific device or networking object.  
Global view of multi-cloud estate
Site view of multi-cloud estate
This turns the once incredibly difficult tasks of validating multi-cloud connectivity, verifying security policies, and analyzing hop-by-hop traffic into an automated and accurate effort that takes seconds — not days or weeks. And, with a single click, your IT teams can explore specific objects — from virtual firewalls to transit gateways to cloud instances — to understand exactly how everything in your organization’s cloud environments relates to and interacts with each other. 
Resources detail
Forward Enterprise provides a visualization of your organization’s entire cloud estate alongside your on-premises environment in a single normalized view. We collect config and state data from all your on-premises devices, such as routers, switches, load balancers, and firewalls. And we use publicly available APIs to gather similar read-only information for your various cloud accounts, including those with major providers, to create a network digital twin. 

Forward Enterprise needs only a basic set of connectivity APIs to access the data required to show all possible traffic paths into your cloud environments. All permissions we use to collect data are read-only.

Track the State of Your Cloud Environment Today and Over Time

Forward Enterprise supports regular data collection that creates a network snapshots archive, allowing technicians to see exactly what changes took place within a window. The collections also provide an always up-to-date forensic audit tool. This makes it easy for your entire IT team to quickly understand how configuration updates impact connectivity, performance, and compliance.

A Single Source of Truth for Your On-Premises, Hybrid, and Multi-Cloud Estate
Forward Networks’ mathematical model creates a complete and always current digital twin of your physical, virtual, and multi-cloud network estate, including config and state information for all network elements and your hybrid or multi-cloud environment. The digital twin provides a comprehensive view of all network behavior, with visibility into every possible path a packet can take. It brings mathematical certainty to network security validations by enabling security operations teams to:

VISUALIZE network layer 2 – 4 topology and all possible traffic paths within a single pane of glass including on-premises, Cloud (AWS, GCP, and Microsoft Azure), and virtualized environments. Then, drill down to specific devices and traffic flows, including configuration and state data. View the global network in a single view or drill down to a single device.

SEARCH the entire estate as simply as a database. Our browser-like search feature performs complete end-to-end path analyses across the network for both on-premises and cloud infrastructure. This also enables you to locate devices and access detailed information on their location, configuration, and state in milliseconds. 

VERIFY that the security policies are extended to the cloud using purpose-built (custom) intent checks. Continuously audit the network and receive actionable alerts for non-compliance with your security policies. Know that applications are compliant before provisioning them.

COMPARE network changes over time to understand their impact on the network and prevent incidents from reoccurring. The network collector frequently scans the network, taking and saving network configurations, topology, and device state snapshots. These “snapshots” become a searchable historical record of network behavior and compliance at any point in time. And the behavior diffs feature makes it easy to quickly find and compare snapshots to identify changes that may violate your security policy.
Explore All Aspects of Your Compute Environment With Forward Enterprise
See for yourself how the Forward Enterprise platform can help your network and security teams to monitor and verify all your clouds through a single pane of glass and explore any object in your cloud environment to ensure everything is working exactly as it should be. To see this feature and the power of a network digital twin in action, please request a demo.

Read more cloud use cases

Verify security policies in the cloud


Deploying traditional security controls is ineffective in the cloud since defensible perimeters are erased, component virtualization and decentralization obscures visibility, and automated configuration tools are required at scale. Forward Networks can help you verify that the same policies you have in place on-prem are being enforced in the cloud by enabling engineers to visualize cloud and on-prem environments in a single normalized view. 
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Automating security for cloud application provisioning

Often conducted manually, secure application provisioning can be painfully slow; essentially eradicating the benefits of cloud. Without a single source of truth and the ability to visualize all potential traffic paths, it’s nearly impossible to ensure that the intended security and connectivity policies are applied to new cloud applications. Which is why we’ve extended the secure application functionality of Forward Enterprise to the cloud. 
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Avoid costly inter cloud routing mistakes with an intent check

A Google search for “unexpected AWS charges” returns hundreds of thousands of results.  In addition to economic consequences, inefficient traffic routing to and from your various cloud instances and other services can also lead to bandwidth and latency issues that undermine network and app performance. By using the intent check feature in the Forward Enterprise platform, you can identify and fix inter-cloud routing mistakes across all your cloud instances.
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Reduce mean time to innocence with hop by hop visibility

Your network and security teams’ struggle to understand what’s happening across your cloud estate is due largely to a lack of appropriate tools. The tools they use to validate connectivity and security for on-premises networking are completely different from those used for the cloud — and between clouds. The Forward Enterprise platform helps your teams by providing a clear visualization of your cloud estate alongside your on-premises environment in a single normalized view.
READ USE CASE

Forward Networks

Mathematically-accurate network modeling trusted by the world's largest networks.
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