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What Is an Edge Router?

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What connects your network to the other networks and allows the employees and staff to VPN in and connect the whole building to another branch? It’s called the network edge, just like the walled city with an edge connecting to other cities or surroundings. The network edge is a vulnerable gateway where the invaders can attack, and that’s where we need the gateways to protect the data coming out and going out. 

Quick Answer

Edge routers are the gateways to the network placed at the network edge to control the data transfer. The routers monitor and take care of what’s coming in and going out. In other words, these are the gateways that connect the private and public network boundary— where the end of your private network and public network start! Additionally, the WAN connects the large buildings or offices to a wide-area network but connects to the internet via an edge router. 

Edge routers also have multiple types, such as aggregation, virtual edge, and branch edge routers. Each has distinct functionalities but with a minor change in the hardware to integrate them into the network pathway. An edge router can be integrated with any network such as 5G, satellite, or even Multiprotocol Label Switching.

Are you still confused about what’s an edge router, its type, and the exact purpose of edge routers? If so, this article will help you grasp everything you need to know about edge routers. 

What is an Edge Router?

An edge router is a gateway that controls your network’s inbound traffic to provide you with a secure and encrypted network environment. Edge routes monitors and block the traffic from the other edge and core routers, infecting your private network and securing your IP from the invaders. In other words, the edge routers are the managing gateways that enable connectivity and manage the data between the enterprise and external network. 

Types of Edge Routers

Edge router has three basic types based on the connectivity in the network. Although the functionalities do not differ much. Wondering which router will suit your private network? Let’s get to the details:

Aggregation Edge Router

Data transfer priority holds the utmost importance in any network, such as which data should get the priority and send first through the network. Thus, limiting the edge routes and managing the data priority is what the aggregation router does best. and limiting the routes is also a downside. This edge router can be used for large networks such as institutes, universities, etc.  

Branch Edge Router 

As clear from the name, this type of edge router serves as a branch in the wide-area network (WAN). This type of edge router can be utilized for smaller networks such as office-based setups. 

Virtual Edge Routers 

Virtual edge networks do not need any hardware for execution but work on the software only. That’s what a virtual edge router is supposed to do. A virtual edge router designs the software which can turn any device into the hardware of its consideration, such as setting up a mobile phone as a hotspot. This virtual edge router can make any device a router or a hub for the network to perform the tasks. However, one of the major drawbacks of this type of router is poor speed. 

Why Do You Need an Edge Router in Network?

There are many reasons why you need an edge router in your network, from acting as a gateway to network security. Wondering how an edge router can help you in your network, here’s are some benefits:

Secure Gateway

As mentioned earlier, edge routers act more like a gateway of a walled city and can encrypt the data we receive from the other networks. For example, the tasks from sending an email to online cloud storage possess risk— that’s where the edge routers will identify the risk by monitoring the data packets and stopping them from entering your network. 

Network Intelligence

The edge routers deal with data packets between your private and public networks, and that’s not where the story ends! The edge routers also deal with plenty of hardware and systems and can manage multiple protocols

Control and Reliability 

You’re in control of your network, and you don’t need to outsource anything! Edge routers will help you manage every security protocol yourself and control the overall network. 

Remote Access

Edge routers permit users to control the devices as well as systems remotely. You can control the devices and systems via Virtual Protected Networks (VPNs), and edge routers can manage multiple VPNs at a time. Teams can connect to a network via VPNs from remote locations— even with a device that does not support the VPN directly. The devices are integrated with the edge routers that indirectly connect them to the VPN. 

Is There Any Difference Between Edge Router and Core Router?

Yes, the edge router and core router differ in their functionalities and location in the network. The edge router serves as a gateway, while the core router is at the city’s center. The main difference is the location as the edge router connects with the other networks and the internet, but the core router never directly connects with the internet. Thus, the core router manages the data traffic inside the network to avoid congestion and lags.

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