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Logical Network Perimeter

Logical Network Perimeter

The logical network perimeter establishes a virtual network boundary that can encompass and isolate a group of related cloud-based IT resources that may be physically distributed. It is defined as the isolation of a network environment from the rest of a communications network.

The logical network perimeter can be implemented to:

  • isolate IT resources in a cloud from non-authorized users
  • isolate IT resources in a cloud from non-users
  • isolate IT resourced in a cloud from cloud consumers
  • control the bandwidth that is available to isolated IT resources

Logical network perimeters are typically established via network devices that supply and control the connectivity of a data center and are commonly deployed as virtualized IT environments that include:

  • Virtual Firewall – An IT resource that actively filters network traffic to and from the isolated network while controlling its interactions with the Internet.
  • Virtual Network – Usually acquired through VLANs, this IT resource isolates the network environment within the data center infrastructure.

Figure 1 - The symbols used to represent a virtual firewall (left) and a virtual network (right).

Figure 1 introduces the notation used to denote these two IT resources. Figure 2 depicts a scenario in which one logical network perimeter contains a cloud consumer's on-premise environment, while another contains a cloud provider's cloud-based environment. These perimeters are connected through a VPN that protects communications, since the VPN is typically implemented by point-to-point encryption of the data packets sent between the communicating endpoints.

Figure 2 - Two logical network perimeters surround the cloud consumer and cloud provider environments.

Related Patterns: