Organizations with distributed branch offices are having difficulty installing and maintaining WAN implementations. Current WAN technologies are complicated, expensive, and rigid. For example, when provisioning a network service to a branch office, organizations require a new CE (Customer Edge) to be sent to the branch office, plus new lines, configuration, and synchronization with PEs (Provider Edge), and of course, the presence of a technician. The expenses end up being relatively high.

Challenges for Multi-site Branches

Multi-site organizations of all sizes, retailers, telcos, school systems, universities, and other distributed companies, operate using branch networks. Each of these distributed sites has the same (or similar) requirements regarding services, connectivity, security, and access to cloud services.

Below are the most common challenges when connecting branch offices with headquarters via traditional WAN:

  • WAN infrastructure is expensive and complicated
  • Unscalable and Inflexible Technology
  • Latency and Performance Issues
  • Unstable and Dependable Networks

SD-WAN at the Distributed Branches

In response to the branch networking challenges, distributed organizations are starting to turn to SD-WAN— a more efficient and cost-effective way to connect their branches. SD-WAN is one of those virtualization (software-based) technologies capable of delivering virtualized resources to the WAN, whether connections are broadband or private.


The universal Customer Premises Equipment (uCPE) brings network virtualization to the edge. It is a general-purpose “white box” appliance developed for SDN and NFVs. Fixed functions CPEs are now being replaced by uCPEs. The uCPE allows using a single platform for different functions such as routing, VPN, firewall, IPS/IDS, and of course, SD-WAN.

A uCPE can be deployed at the customer’s premises (branch), at the data center, or at a provider’s network edge. uCPEs are sometimes deployed in hybrid environments, where existing WAN infrastructure is already working. uCPEs could also be used as complete replacements for a branch’s hardware.

NFV-ready Whitebox uCPE Solutions

Lanner has narrowed down the hardware spec to provide a true whitebox solution, which meets most of the spec customers are looking for as well as certified with wifi and LTE and able to ship to many major countries globally. The benefits to the whitebox solutions will become the foundation of future SD-WAN, uCPE, Cloud RAN and Mobile Edge Computing.

Benefits of using whitebox uCPE Solutions:

  • Faster and Easier Service Provisioning
  • Centralized Control
  • Avoid Vendor Lock-ins
  • Improved Flexibility with Software-defined Security

Lanner Solutions

NCA-1516 and NCA-4025 are white box uCPEs that have been designed to run SD-WAN and SD-Security functions. NCA-1516 is a desktop 5G/WiFI-6 ready network platform designed for small-sized enterprises, retail and branches, while NCA-4025 is a performance-optimized network appliance for medium and large enterprises.

The NCA-1516, a desktop network appliance powered by Intel® Atom® C3000, is capable of both mmWave 5G, Sub-6GHz 5G and its WIfi6 is both 2.4G and 5G compatible. Hardware performance is supercharged with Intel’s QuickAssist Technology and Intel® AES-NI. The NCA-1516 is equipped with ample network communication features and configurations for vCPE/uCPE and Edge security.

Featuring 8, 12 or 16-core Intel® Xeon® D-2100 processors, 8x GbE RJ45, 4x SFP+ and Intel® QuickAssist Technology (by SKU) for improved network performance, the NCA-4025 delivers significant performance enhancement in running multiple virtual network functions VNFs in SD-WAN, reduces testing and validation efforts and accelerates time-to-market deployment.

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