Podcast: Episode #33 - Josh Varghese: Holistic, Scalable OT Network Design

September 21, 2023

About Josh Varghese: Josh Varghese, founder of Traceroute, is a seasoned industrial networking expert who has dedicated himself to serving the dynamic industrial/OT market. With nearly a decade of experience as a technical lead at Industrial Networking Solutions, where he established their technical support and application engineering department, Josh cultivated a deep understanding of the industry. He now leads Traceroute, offering a comprehensive suite of services including consulting, design, solution architecture, and more, while maintaining invaluable relationships with clients and vendors forged during his career.

In this episode, Aaron and Josh Varghese discuss:

  • Navigating vendor dependence and networking complexity in industrial environments
  • Overcoming resistance to technology advancements in industrial settings
  • The challenges of IT-OT convergence and the importance of OT knowledge transfer
  • The importance of empathy and collaboration in an SDN-driven future

Key Takeaways:

  • In the world of industrial networking, the critical importance of bridging the gap between vendors, asset owners, and complex OT environments becomes glaringly evident, as a lack of expertise and responsibility often leads to network disasters and production outages, emphasizing the need for specialized support and education in this field.
  • Getting burned by poorly configured solutions in the industrial technology realm has led to a reluctance to embrace advancements; however, with proper configuration and understanding, these advancements can be highly beneficial.
  • Bridging the gap between IT and OT, and improving basic understanding of network concepts, is crucial for overcoming resistance to new technology adoption and ensuring operational resilience in a world where automation and physical processes intersect in every aspect of business.
  • In the evolving landscape of IT and OT collaboration, the key to success lies in fostering understanding, empathy, and effective communication between the two sides, rather than imposing complexity or hierarchies, while emerging technologies like SDN offer promise but must address the challenge of simplifying network management in the OT space.

"So much of what has happened in the last five to ten years in our space has been around wanting to look at lateral traffic movement or visibility to more traffic. And it's all been very difficult to accomplish because the architecture and the technology available in traditional networking makes it so. You and I have talked about wanting to fast forward to a scenario with sensors in the switch, full visibility, and all this stuff. SDN gets us there like in the snap of a finger." — Josh Varghese

Connect with Josh Varghese:  




Traceroute’s OT networking training in Dallas-Fort Worth on February 8-9, 2024:

The best (or arguably “worst”) kept secret in OT networking is Software Defined Networking:

Connect with Aaron:


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