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Accelerate business processes in B2B networking

Updated: Apr 1

Challenges in B2B networking

B2B networking is also known as Extranet. It is about building secure networks for accessing applications from business partners or clients. Traditionally building B2B connectivities have the following challenges:


  1. Long lead time. It takes months to build after the business deal is closed resulting in lost time and revenue. This is because the process to build such network requires multiple meetings between IT departments from both parties to determine a range of configurations, from a specific network address range that does not conflict with either side, to what encryption cipher to use and what timers to agree on, etc. You then need to execute the configuration, test it and find a maintenance window to deploy it. Additional security policy needs to be put in place to prevent potential lateral movement of the client traffic.

  2. Requires advanced networking skills. The site-to-site IPSec VPN is the most complex among networking protocols. It requires years of training to become competent in configuring and troubleshooting issues and as a result, recruiting younger generation of networking engineers who are interested in getting into this field is difficult.

  3. Ongoing maintenance efforts. The hardware vendors for the traditional VPN solution have been publishing critical vulnerabilities of their software on the monthly bases. Patching these vulnerability issues require maintenance window and downtime, not patching it risks compliance and security risks.

  4. Expensive equipment. Hardware VPN concentrators cost enterprises hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars. When the 5 year End of Life contract expires, do you shell out the large sum again or look for new solutions?

  5. No disaster recovery. Due to its complexity back up configuration is difficult to implement and most of the time when disaster does happen, the service access goes down despite the fact that there is backup.


Bumblebee Networks solution

Bumblebee Networks provides a SaaS solution that significantly simplifies a business client onboarding. The platform is easy to use and creating B2B connectivity takes just a few steps. Here is how it works.


  1. First register your application which generates a unique app service ID.

  2. Through the portal you invite business clients to onboard.

  3. A business client registers on the platform and creates an endpoint with the associated service ID.

  4. You receive a request for the connection request, you approve the request.

  5. Done


Bumblebee Networks supports clients to connect to your applications no matter where they are deployed, on-prem or in the cloud. Similarly clients can be on-prem, in the cloud or from the remote developers. For on-prem applications or on-prem clients, virtual machines are deployed for creating connectivity.



Bumblebee Networks solution diagram
Bumblebee Networks solution diagram

Benefits


1. Fast onboarding

As illustrated above, with Bumblebee Networks you no longer need to hold meetings and negotiate with your clients the various implementation details. And you no longer onboard them one at a time due to short of staff. You may onboard them all simultaneously, thus increasing customer satisfaction and reduce time to revenue.


2. Highly available

Bumblebee Networks improves your service availability by supporting multi-hosting, a feature that allows you to build policy based redundancy for applications or services registered on the platform. You specify an operation priority among multiple deployments of a service and should one site fail, Bumblebee Networks re-route traffic to the next site in the order you define.


For example, you launch a service in one US data center and launch another one in the cloud as a backup service. Bumblebee Networks monitors the health of the service in all regions and normally route traffic to the data center. When it detects failure, it re-routes traffic to the cloud region. (Note service consumers should be designed with this capability in mind in order to take advantage of it.)


3. Cloud scale

Bumblebee Networks is built from the ground up to scale out to handle any kind of network bandwidth requirement.


Start with one instantiation of Bumblebee endpoint or app service which supports 500mbps network throughput. To increase the throughput you simply resize the bandwidth to add another 500mbps to your app service or endpoint. You can do so without limitation. Similarly you can reduce the bandwidth by resizing down the deployment. The flexibility of as you go eliminates the need for planning and upfront wasteful cost.


4. Day 2 Operation

Bumblebee Networks provides automated security vulnerability patching and software upgrade without downtime. This improves system availability time and reduces on-going maintenance work on the ops team.


You can run tests on end-to-end bandwidth consumption and round trip delay to quickly identify issues and troubleshoot problems.


The skill set for configuring and managing application access connectivity and security does not require advanced networking background, sysadmins and infra engineers can adequately fulfill the tasks.


To learn more

To learn more on how to connect to Azure OpenAI privately, check out How to create an App Service for Azure OpenAI.

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