Prepare for Anything: How to Never Play from Behind with Your Network Operations

No team wants to fall behind early in a game, so they’re playing from behind. Even worse is feeling like you’re already playing from behind before the game has even started. Inevitably, it brings the entire team and fans down, making winning even harder.

As an IT team, that’s what your work can feel like. You have an increasingly complex network environment to manage with more devices, more applications, more demanding users, and more problems to deal with when they arise.

You’ve done your best to optimize your network, but you don’t know if your design will get the job done. Whether you’re building a new network, expanding an existing one, or simply trying to optimize and manage what you already have, you don’t know what will happen until it does. Your users depend on the network, but whether it delivers the connectivity and performance they need is all up to how well you’ve designed and managed it.

Because you don’t have the right tools to manage your network and support your users, you are playing from behind. It makes for a start to every day, knowing you’re destined to play catch-up trying to figure out where and why problems are impacting your network and application performance. It can overwhelm you, eventually making you feel burned out, making it almost impossible to prepare for anything and beat the odds.

What if you had a way of knowing exactly how your network is going to perform, and what would happen if you made specific changes or set up the network infrastructure differently? It would be like having a magic playbook that showed you what plays your opponent will run, so you can plan against them and give your team the upper hand.

Extreme Networks has created that magic playbook for you, starting from network design through ongoing network management with ExtremeCloud IQ CoPilot.

ExtremeCloud IQ is an AI-driven cloud-based network management platform that gives you a holistic view of your entire network environment in one application. You no longer have to deal with multiple applications for different network components – all your devices, users, applications, and even your wired, wireless, and SD-WAN performance are delivered and managed through one unified platform.

ExtremeCloud IQ CoPilot is the magic playbook that gives you the performance edge.

Digital Twin Technology

Anytime you make changes to your network, you take on risk. Even the best IT techs can’t predict how their network will perform when they add devices – or when they deploy a new network to replace their legacy infrastructure. So many things can go wrong, resulting in downtime and productivity loss, not to mention security risks.

With ExtremeCloud IQ CoPilot’s digital twin technology, your NetOps team gets a virtual sandbox to test network scenarios under your live conditions. With a virtual copy of your network, you can place devices digitally and test them under your real-time network conditions before deploying them into your production network. Whether you’re looking to optimize your existing network with small upgrades or making wholesale changes – or even doing a full rip and replace – you suddenly have a way to see how your network will perform with your changes. With the digital twin technology, you can troubleshoot and test various options before going live, saving you time and money and giving you confidence that your network will perform as expected, reducing post-deployment issues.

Explainable Machine Learning

Even the best game plans are subject to change, depending on what your opponent – network traffic, users, applications, devices – throws at you. Even if you have the perfect game script, the other team will make changes to its game plan on the fly; you’ll need to be able to do the same.

Challenges will always arise no matter how well you’ve designed your network. With ExtremeCloud IQ CoPilot, you get the power of AI and machine learning algorithms to help monitor your network, applications, and devices, detecting anomalies that could impact performance before they do. Instead of reacting to SLA violations or other issues, CoPilot identifies potential problems in advance, allowing you to address them, so minor issues don’t become significant outages.

CoPilot identifies anomalies and recommends remediation steps, so you don’t have to spend time finding the issues or solutions. But it doesn’t stop there; it also gives you the logic behind each recommended action and why they are the best resolutions.

Your magic playbook doesn’t end there, though. Like any coach constantly learns from what happens on the field to make adjustments, CoPilot continually learns based on the influx of new data, always becoming a more effective tool and keeping your network trouble-free. It learns which problems are real and which are false alarms, reducing wasted time chasing down non-issues.

A Winning Combination

Given the incredible demands placed on them, there’s no simple way to build and manage networks today. But the burden doesn’t have to be solely on your NetOps team. With ExtremeCloud IQ and CoPilot, you have a sideline of digital, automated assistant coaches helping you understand what’s happening in your network, proactively spot potential problems, make network changes with confidence, and keep your users’ experiences optimized at all times. With CoPilot, you don’t have to worry about prioritizing users or issues – the hard work is done for you, so all you have to do is follow CoPilot’s recommendations and, simultaneously have more time to focus on other strategic business initiatives.

With ExtremeCloud IQ CoPilot, you’re prepared for anything. Your team has the contextual insight to run an effective IT playbook. You’re never playing from behind and have the in-game insights to lead your team to victory every time.

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About the Author
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Cammy Perry
Senior Content Marketing Specialist

Cammy is a Content Marketing Specialist at Extreme Networks, leveraging her expertise to craft thought leadership and engaging content.

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