Optiv Cybersecurity Dictionary

What is SDN (Software-Defined Networking)?

Software-defined networking (SDN) is an approach to computer networking in the LAN or data center of an enterprise that uses software to abstract the underlying network elements and to logically centralize network intelligence and control.


Under traditional approaches to networking, individual devices function relatively autonomously and with only limited awareness of the state of the overall network. SDN provides centralized network awareness and allows for the development of more intelligent policies that can optimize functions such as bandwidth management, security, restoration, etc. SD-WAN takes many SDN principles and extends them to the enterprise's wide area network (WAN). The goal of SDN is to improve network control by enabling enterprises and service providers to respond quickly to changing business requirements.

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