Forward Networks Releases AI Assist
January 25, 2024
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Forward Networks has officially launched AI Assist, a generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) feature integrated into its flagship platform, Forward Enterprise.

This addition aims to empower NetOps, SecOps, and CloudOps professionals, enabling them to gain comprehensive insights and expedite solutions for their most demanding network challenges through natural language prompts. The announcement coincides with the company's unveiling of its long-term AI strategy.

Recognizing the persistent need for enhanced access to hybrid, multi-cloud network data among engineers, Forward Networks addresses the hurdles posed by vendor diversity and network complexity. AI Assist, available now, facilitates Network Query Engine (NQE) searches using natural language, thus allowing team engineers of varying skill levels to conduct sophisticated network queries with minimal learning curve. Moreover, AI Assist generates natural language explanations for existing queries, fostering improved collaboration and understanding within the team.

Forward Networks is harnessing the collective power of user-generated searches and its extensive NQE library to train its networking large language model (LLM). Because Forward Enterprise collects an unparalleled breadth of cloud and device data, the integration of the networking LLM with Forward's advanced data platform streamlines operations and provides even novice users with advanced insights into network behavior. Leveraging the ease of natural language, AI Assist empowers engineers to quickly assess network behavior and identify potential issues (e.g., non-compliance, troubleshooting). The model's continuous improvement is driven by operator utilization, establishing a solid foundation for upcoming AI features.

"By combining the power of our network digital twin with AI, we make it even easier for engineering and security teams to extract critical insights from their network," said Nikhil Handigol, Co-Founder, Forward Networks. "We are developing the world's leading networking large language model, laying the groundwork for future features that proactively assist engineers, enhance the efficiency and safety of changes, and aid in determining optimal network configurations. Since founding the company just over ten years ago, our passion has continued to grow and drive our commitment to modernize networks. Harnessing the powerful capabilities of AI is integral to achieving our vision."

Forward Networks ensures that complex and mission-critical networks are secure, agile, and predictable. The platform gathers configuration and L2-L7 state data from network devices and public cloud platforms, creates a mathematical model of the network, and computes all possible traffic paths. Supporting devices from major networking vendors and cloud operators, including AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, Forward Enterprise stands out as the go-to solution for large enterprises managing multi-vendor, hybrid-cloud networks.

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