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Making the SDN Transition: First Steps

As software-defined networking moves beyond the hype, many organizations are contemplating plans for migrating to SDN. But getting started can be a challenge, given the complex nature of the SDN landscape with its assorted architectures and multitude of vendors.

"The big question is do you have to buy into SDN whole hog -- jump into the deep end first -- or can you make this transition in a more gradual fashion?" Eric Hanselman, chief analyst at 451 Research and SDN track chair for Interop Las Vegas, said in an interview. "Fortunately, it's not something that you have to do all in one shot."

Companies can get started on the road to SDN by automating pieces of their network environment through virtualization. "Most organizations have gotten to the point where they're automating some of the simple networking technologies, like VLANs, but those basic techniques need to take a step up," Hanselman said.

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