Packet Design Launches Explorer Suite Version 16 with Segment Routing Support

Company becomes first independent software vendor to offer management visibility into Segment Routing

DALLAS – Oct. 20, 2016 – Today during its first North America Customer Symposium, Packet Design announced the Explorer Suite version 16. This latest evolution of its service assurance product suite includes industry-first support for Segment Routing, which is becoming increasingly popular as a way to simplify MPLS traffic engineering and accelerate software-defined networking (SDN) adoption.

The new version will help network operators better understand how network routing behavior impacts service delivery. New features and enhancements in the suite’s Route Explorer and Performance Explorer products will increase visibility into the performance of critical services, accelerate problem triage and diagnosis, and mitigate the risk in migrating to new technologies such as Segment Routing and SDN.

The Explorer Suite version 16 includes the following new capabilities:

Segment Routing Traffic Engineering: Route Explorer will give network operations and engineering teams network-wide visibility into Segment Routing Traffic Engineering (SR-TE) and drill-in capabilities to specific segment analytics. Network operators who are migrating from Resource Reservation Protocol Traffic Engineering (RSVP-TE) to SR-TE, or implementing traffic engineering for the first time, can monitor and manage all of their TE tunnels and segments from a single place.

“Our early adopter customers tell us they want to decrease the risk from deploying Segment Routing in production, including in software-defined networks, by being able to view and manage the SR-TE segments,” said Matt Sherrod, vice president of product management for Packet Design. “Whether a customer wants to start with Segment Routing or is already using RSVP-TE, we can provide full visibility and planning for their deployment.”

In addition, Packet Design’s SDN-TE application now automates Segment Routing analysis, policy-based definition, and provisioning, facilitating the move to next-generation networks.

Service Dashboards: New web-based dashboards provide at-a-glance, network-wide summary views for availability and performance of services, including Layer 2 and Layer 3 Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), highlighting deviations from adaptive baselines. Operations and engineering teams can quickly identify which infrastructure components support a particular customer or service. Then, using intuitive, drill-down workflows to new analysis pages, they can better understand the cause of issues such as congestion and resolve them.

Guided Troubleshooting Workflows: New workflows based on customer use cases will help operations teams triage common issues faster to reduce mean time to repair. For instance, a new path look-up capability helps network operations center (NOC) staff resolve reachability trouble tickets more easily and quickly (e.g., a service provider’s VPN customer can’t access a remote branch office from headquarters). The operator can now simply type in a source and destination id, such as a router address, location name, or service domain (e.g., Google.com), to see the service path between those endpoints.

“Many of our customers, including some of the largest network operators in the world, have told us that they are closing up to 80 percent of tickets with no trouble found,” said Sherrod. “Packet Design is making it much easier for them to solve many of these common, transitory issues.”

Users can also replay the behavior of a specific path between two endpoints, including overlay services such as Layer 2 and Layer 3 VPNs, or TE tunnels and segments. The ability to view a map of just the nodes and links for a particular service path with contextual analytics will help service providers better isolate specific customer or service problems.

Packet Design customers from service provider, enterprise, and government organizations have gathered in Dallas for the next two days for product training and networking.