14 Pros and Cons of Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS)
If asked, which is the most popular wide area network (WAN) connectivity option in the industry today, the answer would be Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) option without any doubt.
It’s a relatively a new technology and typically refers to Layer 3 MPLS VPN services. Most of the organizations are opting to replace their frame-relay networks with MPLS.
Pros and Cons of Multiprotocol Label Switching
The question is would a move to MPLS can benefit your organization? Weigh the pros and cons of working with MPLS.
Pros of MPLS:
If you are looking forward to upgrading your telecom infrastructure, then MPLS can be an excellent idea. It can help you with enhanced flexibility, more bandwidth, and better performance.
- Scalable – Multiprotocol Layer Switching provides you with the highly scalable mechanism. It ensures high-performance telecommunication networks required by you. Networks can easily be engineered and maintained for bandwidth optimization. MPLS can be scaled to over thousands of sites.
- Inter-Connectivity Growth – MPLS grow the inter-connectivity of your network by using the minimal addition of hardware.
- Common applications – You can use MPLS for interconnecting data centers with your branch offices and branches at other locations.
- Remote connections – MPLS allows you to add new remote connections without using any additional hardware system at your primary site. Being fully cloud-based, it doesn’t require the point to point connectivity.
- WAN routing – With MPLS link, you can leave WAN routing to your service provider and employ fewer staffs for WAN.
- Quality of service – MPLS comes with the quality of service (QoS) options, which empower you to treat latency-sensitive traffic like VoIP.
- WAN protocol – Multiprotocol Label Switching is the perfect mode to manage any-to-any connectivity, including video and voice.
- Service level agreements – MPLS services are delivered SLAs (service-level agreements). These SLAs include delivery guarantees, unlike consumer broadband, etc.
- WAN management – When you use MPLS for Wide Area Network connectivity, you will require network devices and management tools. They should be compatible with both MPLS and Ethernet.
Adding some more pros of MPLS network:
- Enhanced bandwidth– No doubt, this new technology allows you to access multiple traffic types; you can traverse the network
- Improved up-time – Since MPLS allows you to have an alternative network, you enjoy improved up-time.
- Lower congestion – With MPLS, you have the option to use alternative paths and avoid high traffic congestion. Thus you enjoy reduced network congestion.
Better end-user experience – By having access to multiple Classes of Service to different types of traffic such as VOIP, you have better experience.
There are a few cons of the Multiprotocol Label Switching technology. The possible drawbacks are:
- Lack of Total Control– The service provider has to configure the overall networks. And you will need to work along with your provider in routing MPLS traffic while using a dynamic routing. MPLS does not allow you to have total control of your network.
- Expensive – Since MPLS is an advanced way of networking, it can cost you more than the Ethernet. However, the cost is less than T1 lines.
After weighing the pros and cons of the MPLS technology, we can say that pros are greater than the cons. Hence, MPLS is the right solution in case you want to implement a new network or upgrade your existing network.
However, when you want to implement the new network, it is important to examine your business needs and requirements. You should focus on understanding the resources available within the network. Moreover, you should look for a reliable and trusted service provider option at the most suitable geographic locations.
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