ZPE Systems launches open SD-Branch platform for distributed enterprises and managed service providers

Despite using SD-Branch and next-gen firewalls for branch transformation, modern enterprises still struggle with critical gaps in reliability and uptime. ZPE Systems has addressed these gaps with the release of a fully-integrated, open SD-Branch platform.

ZPE Systems SD-Branch

This platform consists of a new edge gateway called the Nodegrid Hive Services Router (Hive SR) with integrated 5G/4G LTE; cloud-orchestrated SD-WAN application; and wireless access points.

By collaborating with industry tech giants, ZPE Systems is enabling large enterprises, managed service providers, and other organizations to achieve comprehensive automation, robust out-of-band management, Day Zero installation, and continuous operation, bringing NetDevOps to the edge. This eliminates weak links in the automation chain, allowing for automatic deployments and remediation that are critical to reliability and uptime.

ZPE Systems’ Co-founder and CEO Arnaldo Zimmermann explains: “People automate what they can, but not what is most critical to their infrastructure. This leaves dangerous gaps in processes that cannot be automated. For example, you can’t recover a stuck switch without being able to talk to a third party PDU. Using our vendor-neutral platform, you can bridge those gaps and remotely connect to all your third party infrastructure.”

The announcement comes after the company’s recent release of its ZPE Cloud Apps, Nodegrid Data Lake, and environmental sensors. These — paired with the latest Hive SR, SD-WAN application, and ZAP-5520 wireless access point — solidify the company’s vision of providing a cost-effective, next-generation SD-Branch platform.

The Hive SR delivers more than connectivity and security, with integrated out-of-band and cloud automation that allow companies to orchestrate their NetDevOps pipeline in its entirety. Its open architecture, powerful x86 CPU, and ample memory and storage enable companies to directly host 3rd party software, containers, and VMs such as those for NGFWs or user experience monitoring applications.

The Hive SR also features the latest generation Wi-Fi 6 access point built-in, which covers 3,000 sqft (300 sqm) of space. Additional coverage can be achieved using the new ceiling-mounted ZAP-5520 access point, which complements the SD-Branch solution by providing enterprise-grade Wi-Fi 5 throughout indoor locations at speeds up to 1.2 Gbps.

Additionally, the Hive SR accommodates Nodegrid’s environmental sensors and connects to ZPE Cloud. These integrations allow companies to increase uptime by having visibility into device tampering, physical conditions, user experiences, and hidden machine data. The ZPE Cloud platform finally enables organizations to automate across diverse, multi-vendor equipment at the branch, thanks to its vertical integration of hardware and orchestration stacks. Organizations can now prevent downtime, predictably configure and scale environments, and optimize user experiences at the edge.

Increasingly hybrid infrastructures force organizations to shift connectivity and security to the edge, which can lead to a ‘tromboning’ or ‘hairpinning’ effect as traffic is looped through the data center. The Hive SR with the new SD-WAN application eliminates this, serving as the on-ramp to what Gartner calls Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) — or cloud-delivered connectivity and security. This combination allows organizations to send traffic directly to public and private clouds, without congesting the data center or risking security. Features like Auto-VPN and QoS automatically create secure tunnels and give IT visibility into application performance, bandwidth, link status, and other critical metrics.

Bringing everything together is the company’s signature next-gen out-of-band with Zero Trust Security at large scale. Next-gen out-of-band enables management of the entire SD-Branch solution and adjacent equipment, without putting engineers on site. Servers, PDUs, IoT, and other devices present at the remote edge can be controlled via serial console, management port or USB connection.

This robust out-of-band is reliably accessible via the latest generation 5G modem onboard the Hive SR, which enables the branch to be completely rebuilt from scratch via the cloud — a process ZPE calls ‘seed-of-life automation.’ These capabilities reduce mean-time-to-repair (MTTR) and prevent downtime via instant remote access to edge locations.

These capabilities are available now in Nodegrid OS v5.4 including notable features such as support for SD-WAN, gateway profiles, 5G cellular, and IPv6. These enable organizations to take full advantage of ZPE Systems’ next-generation SD-Branch solution.

VP of Marketing and Product Management, Koroush Saraf, adds: “One customer reported that the all-in-one Nodegrid solution exceeded all requirements, slashed 50% of their workload, and helped achieve near 100% network uptime.”

Hive SR is shipping now in limited quantities.

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