There are many ways a digital twin can make enterprise networks more secure, agile, and reliable. Actually, there are more ways than we envisioned when we came up with the technology and we’re constantly learning from our customers.

Guru Ramamoorthy, VP, Global Head of Network Architecture, Engineering, & Operations at S&P Global, shared how his company uses Forward Enterprise to leverage the data in his company network to help their developers during a keynote presentation at ONUG. S&P Global is a leading provider of financial industry data, including rating indices, benchmark analytics, and data for capital and commodity markets. The company operates 100 offices, 51 data centers for multi-cloud providers, and 37,000 employees to deliver that essential intelligence to over 100 countries.

As a company dedicated to providing insightful data that drives meaningful decisions, S&P Global understands the value of providing access to information. However, the information developers needed to be efficient was inaccessible, making it more challenging to develop and provision new applications.

At Fall ONUG ‘22, Guru gave a keynote speech where he explained how his team uses Forward Enterprise to make network data universally accessible and useful while sharing some of the benefits they’ve reaped and their modern approach of federating IT.

Developers don't have to learn networking; they use the Forward Enterprise digital twin to provide them with insightful information so they can make informed decisions without having to wait for responses from busy team members. Moreover, making this data accessible frees up engineers who were, in his words, “supplying the same information again and again and again and again.”

As many people are aware, S&P Global merged with IHS Markit. By relying on their digital twin, they integrated the networks in under six months; the same work would have taken them years using previous tools and methodology.

Guru also discusses how Forward Enterprise helped his team accelerate cloud migrations. The company has always been in the cloud and has migrated several hundred applications. In his keynote presentation, he shares how Forward Networks accelerates the cloud journey.

See the full Keynote Presentation here.

To learn more about how a digital twin simplifies merging networks following acquisitions, view our recent webinar.

For a tailored discussion with an engineer and full product demo, click here.

ONUG Spring 2022 is in the books. What a great event! Being able to meet with networking experts in person feels like such a treat after everything we’ve been through. The best thing about ONUG events is the cornucopia of informational sessions. Even if you were there, you probably didn’t get to go to all the sessions you wanted to attend. I know our team didn’t!

In case you missed them, I wanted to point to two sessions that we hosted; both of which received very positive feedback from on-site attendees.

Our Senior Director of Product and UX, Natale Ruello, hosted a Proof of Concept session demonstrating how our customers use Forward Enterprise to verify their security posture in hybrid multi-cloud environments.

Additionally, Joshua Matheus, Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, gave a keynote presentation highlighting how Goldman has reduced application delivery time to under an hour and how his team is using a digital twin to make their network more reliable, agile, and secure.

We are already looking forward to our next set of events this season, RSA (June 6 – 9 in San Francisco, CA) and Cisco Live (June 12 – 16 in Las Vegas, Nevada). Will we see you there?

In the meantime, stay current with our platform via our BrightTALK Channel with new educational sessions every month.

Spring is in the air and that means that ONUG Spring is right around the corner! At Forward Networks, it’s feeling a little like Christmas in April because we’re so excited to meet in-person, and we hope you feel the same. Our booth is polished, our presenters are on fire, and our capabilities for solving multi-cloud problems are unparalleled.

In addition to an in-person and virtual booth staffed by hands-on technical experts, we have two exciting presentations planned.

On Wednesday, April 27 at 11:20 a.m., our director of product, Natale Ruello, will share how our customers use the Forward Enterprise platform to verify security policies in their hybrid multi-cloud environments. If you’d like a preview of the challenges he’s going to address, check out his ONUG blog post: Is your multi-cloud estate secure?

On Thursday, April 28 at 2:25 p.m., Josh Matheus, Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, will detail the pain points that motivated the need for a single source of network truth, describe the process of selecting and implementing a digital twin, and outline the results that his network team has achieved since deployment.

If you haven’t registered for the event yet – please use our discount code to save 20% on your registration by using the code: Forward22. We hope to see you there or at another event this year.

If you can’t attend in person, don’t forget to check out our virtual ONUG booth where you can ask questions and see the technology in action.

In my previous ONUG blog post Query Your Network like a Database, I talked about how companies are embracing Network Automation in order to become more agile. I described how Network Automation can be very powerful but frighteningly dangerous without a proper safety guard. I explained what the Forward Networks Network Query Engine is and how it can help in building a rock solid network verification solution.

But now I’ll explain how customers can build a complete network automation and verification solution with Ansible and Forward Networks.

Ansible (by Red Hat) is a simple, powerful and agentless tool used by many customers to automate the deployment and configurations of applications, servers and network devices.

Forward Networks’ flagship platform, Forward Enterprise, documents, searches, verifies, and predicts the behavior of your network by creating an always-accurate software copy of your entire network infrastructure for both on-prem and cloud.

With available REST APIs, it easily integrates into existing network management workflow and tools.

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Back in October, our co-founder Nikhil Handigol presented at the Open Networking User Group (ONUG) meeting in New York on how Forward Enterprise helps accelerate and de-risk network operations.

ONUG was created in early 2012 by Nick Lippis, of the Lippis Report, and Ernest Lefner (pictured below, right, with representatives from Forward Networks), formerly of Fidelity Investments to address the need for a smaller, more user-focused open networking conference. The ONUG semiannual conferences reflect the work being done in working groups throughout the year to drive standards, interoperability and innovation. The conferences include sessions from IT business leaders, updates from the Working Group Initiative members, hands-on tutorials, interactive labs, real world use cases, proof of concept demonstrations, and a vendor technology showcase.

As Nikhil mentions, he is currently on the Monitoring and Analytics working group. In Nikhil's presentation, he describes the primary functional areas of Forward Enterprise: Search, Verify and Predict. The Search capability is a powerful query engine to search for network attributes, state and configuration details across the entire network. It goes well beyond the ability to search box-by-box, but can search on end-to-end network behavior, such as identifying all the possible paths between a source and a destination, including filtering traffic by a variety of attributes or results. Forward Verify can test all of your network requirements and policies to determine whether the current network design and configurations could potentially result in a policy violation. Forward Predict allows changes to network device configurations to be tested in a safe sandbox environment away from the live network, and to reverify if network policies are either repaired and or if changes introduced new violations.

Organizations can now analyze and verify if their network implementation is currently aligned with their network intent, i.e., the sum of all policies and compliance requirements that are generally articulated and represented at a higher, more abstract level than networking and security protocols and box configurations.

Understanding, modeling and verifying network intent is generally thought to be the first step towards intent-based networking, which Gartner describes as the "next big thing". After watching Nikhil's presentation, learn more about how Forward Networks can help your organization along the path to intent-based networking at https://www.forwardnetworks.com.

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