Pertino Introduces Cloud-Based SDN Service

Software-defined network (SDN) technology startup Pertino on Tuesday came to market with its first product, a cloud-based networking solution that enables individuals or small businesses to quickly set up a LAN over the cloud without the need for any additional hardware.

The new Pertino service is a cloud-based technology that delivers networks as a service, said Todd Krautkremer, vice president of marketing for the Los Gatos, Calif.-based company.

"We allow customers to build a cloud-based network in minutes that connects users and IT resources from anywhere," Krautkremer said. "Networks have always been about places. We're about people. If you have an Internet connection, you can create a network."

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While office-based LANs work great by allowing users to plug in and access corporate resources, that doesn't help users outside the office, Krautkremer said. Furthermore, traditional LANs are difficult to use for accessing resources in the cloud without a WAN in place, he said.

"Users are increasingly mobile," he said. "As they work more outside the office network, the network itself needs to be outside the office."

Other than the Pertino software, customers do not require any additional hardware or software to run the Pertino SDN service, Krautkremer said.

Setting up the Pertino SDN service is a three-step process, including downloading the software, sending an email to other users to invite them to join the network, and then add more devices such as servers and printers, Krautkremer said.

The Pertino service creates a software-defined network via 28 access points running on such global cloud infrastructure providers as Amazon, Rackspace and Linode. "Users just need an Internet connection, and they are routed to the nearest Pertino node," Krautkremer said.

There are five major use cases for the service, including the ability to access office networking resources from outside the office, accessing office applications via remote desktops, secure file sharing, secure access to cloud services from within an office, and the ability to spin up and down a network as needed.

The secure file sharing significantly increases mobile user security, Krautkremer said. "Businesses can avoid the security issues of working with services such as Dropbox by making files available for sharing as if their users were in the office," he said.

NEXT: Availability, Support For The Pertino SDN Service

The Pertino SDN service has been in beta testing for about 90 days, and already has more than 250 customers running over 500 devices, Krautkremer said. "I believe this is one of the largest deployments of SDN today," he said.

It comes in two versions. A free version allows the building of a software-defined network for up to three users, each with up to three devices. For $10 per user per month, an SMB can set up a network of up to 250 users, each with up to five devices each.

An enterprise version is also in the works, Krautkremer said.

The Pertino SDN service is now available with limited availability, and currently supports Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. The company plans to offer beta support for Windows 8, Windows Server 2012 and Macintosh OS-X in March, and support for smartphones and tablets later this year. The service is slated to enter general availability in the second half of 2013.