Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Cisco Launches its Latest Unified Computing System

Cisco launched a new generation of servers and software based on Intel's latest Xeon Scalable Platform processors and a unique Cisco system-level vision for the future of IT.

The Cisco Unified Computing System (Cisco UCS) M5 generation seeks to extend the power and simplicity of unified computing for data-intensive workloads, applications at the edge, and the next generation of distributed application architectures. The latest UCS Director 6.5 management software allows data center professionals to complete 80% of operational tasks from a single console. A Workload Optimization Manager, which is powered by Turbonomic and which is deeply integrated into the UCS hardware, uses intent-based analytics to continuously match workload demand to infrastructure supply across on premise and multi-cloud environments. The company says the Cisco UCS can reduce administration and management costs by up to 63 percent while accelerating the delivery of new application services by up to 83 percent.

Leveraging the new Intel Xeon Scalable processors, UCS M5 servers supports up to double the memory capacity of previous systems. Cisco said its lab testing reveals that UCS M5 servers deliver up to 86% higher performance over the previous generation of UCS.

The M5 generation of servers include:


  • Cisco UCS B200 M5 Blade Server: a half-width blade form factor for traditional multi-tier or distributed applications. It supports two GPUs.
  • Cisco UCS B480 M5 Blade Server: for workloads ranging from memory-intensive, mission-critical enterprise applications to distributed database virtualized workloads.
  • Cisco UCS C220 M5 Rack Server: aa high-density 2-socket rack server that delivers performance and efficiency for a wide range of workloads, including virtualization, collaboration, and bare-metal applications.
  • Cisco UCS C240 M5 Rack Server: a storage and I/O optimized enterprise-class rack server for big data analytics, software-defined storage and bare metal applications.
  • Cisco UCS C480 M5 Rack Server: featuring a modular architecture for flexible technology refreshes, the C480 delivers scale-up extensibility for in-memory databases, big data analytics, virtualization, VDI and bare metal applications. GPU support has tripled—with up to six supported—as has disk capacity, which now supports 32 drives.

“As organizations strive to become more competitive through real-time analytics and faster decision-making, new thinking around data center infrastructure is required,” said Liz Centoni, senior vice president and general manager, Cisco Computing Systems Product Group. “Our unique, unified system architecture delivers the agility our customers need to create a cloud experience on-prem, so that our new line of servers simply means faster applications with fewer complications.”

http://www.cisco.com

Infinera achieves 19 Tbit/s capacity on trans-Atlantic route

Infinera announced the completion of a submarine field trial with a major subsea network provider over a modern trans-Atlantic route that involved the Infinera XTS-3300 meshponder and demonstrated the potential to support 19 Tbit/s per fibre pair, achieving what it claimed is the highest spectral efficiency on a trans-Atlantic route with stable, commercial-ready performance margin.

Infinera's XTS-3300 leverages its new Infinera Infinite Capacity Engine 4 (ICE4) and comprises part of the Infinera Intelligent Transport Network portfolio optimised for long-haul subsea applications. The new meshponder delivers the performance of Infinera's ICE4 technology, including enhanced pre- and post-dispersion compensation, digitally synthesised Nyquist subcarriers and soft-decision forward error correction (FEC) gain sharing.

The trial over the trans-Atlantic link was designed to validate ICE4's transmission of 8QAM 600 Gbit/s super-channel in 140 GHz of spectrum, delivering what is claimed to be the highest spectral efficiency of 4.3 bits per second, per hertz together with commercial-ready performance margin.

The ICE4-based Infinera DTN-X XT Series and XTS Series are expected to be generally availability later in the quarter. Infinera's Cloud Xpress 2 platform, also based on ICE4, began shipping in the second quarter of 2017.

Commenting on the field trial, Andrew Schmitt, lead analyst at Cignal AI, said, "While optical vendors have demonstrated experimental approaches to boost subsea fibre capacity, the Infinera XTS-3300 is the first commercial platform to deliver over 19 Tbit/s capacity on a trans-Atlantic route… the XTS-3300 trial used tighter channel spacing and advanced compensation techniques in the DSP".


  • Infinera unveiled its Infinite Capacity Engine, a multi-terabit optical subsystem in 2016, combining its next generation FlexCoherent Processor and the photonics of its fourth generation photonic integrated circuit (PIC). The technology enables optical super-channel capacity of up to 2.4 Tbit/s and reach up to 12,000 km in a single compact package.
  • The solution also features Advanced Coherent Toolkit (ACT), providing a claimed 60% more capacity-reach performance for submarine and terrestrial networks versus current generation optical technologies.

EdgeConneX and Telia Carrier expand partnership

EdgeConneX, a specialist provider of data centre solutions at the edge of the network, announced a strategic partnership with Sweden's Telia Carrier to enable access to the carrier's network and interconnection points with reduced latency and improved traffic flow and efficiency for Internet end-users.

EdgeConneX noted that as enterprises increasingly access to strategic edge locations worldwide, Telia will begin deploying its network at multiple facilities across EdgeConneX's portfolio of 30 Edge Data Centers (EDCs) in 27 global markets. In addition to the existing deployments in Detroit, Santa Clara and Portland, the first wave will include Boston, Atlanta, Minneapolis and Phoenix in the U.S. and Amsterdam in Europe.

The partnership is designed to meet increasing end-user demand for OTT service delivery and the move to the edge by enterprise users. To create the ecosystem needed to address the current and future demands of the marketplace, the partnership combines Telia Carrier's global Internet backbone with EdgeConneX facilities that are strategically located close to network aggregation points to enable improved security and lower latency for the cloud, IoT and content via single-hop access.

Regarding the partnership, Clint Heiden, CCO at EdgeConneX, said, "Telia Carrier is an ideal partner for EdgeConneX… its global IP backbone is… sought-after by global MSOs, content providers, gaming companies and hyperscalers expanding worldwide, and the IP connectivity it brings is critical to EdgeConneX ecosystem... furthermore, Telia Carrier (also) believes in the momentum of the edge creating a better user experience".



  • Recently, EdgeConneX partnered with NL-ix, which interconnects over 100 carrier neutral data centres in 15 European countries, to establish a new point of presence (PoP) at the EdgeConneX EDC in Amsterdam.

    EdgeConneX also recently entered and agreement with Megaport (USA), the U.S. subsidiary of Australia-based Megaport, a global provider of SDN-based solutions, to expand the availability of Megaport's elastic interconnection services in EdgeConneX’s Houston, Santa Clara and Boston EDCs.

Equinix opens $113m AM4 IBX data centre in Amsterdam

Equinix announced the opening of its new $113 million International Business Exchange (IBX) data centre, AM4, in Amsterdam at its Science Park campus to address increasing demand for interconnection capacity from business customers.

Equinix's new AM4 IBX facility in Amsterdam is adjacent to the existing AM3 data centre and is designed to enable companies to extend network infrastructure to the digital edge and enhance workload performance by shortening the distance between services and the end users.

The initial phase of AM4 includes space for 1,555 cabinets and is planned to have four expansion phases. At full build the vertical facility will represent a total investment of approximately $189 million and provide 4,200 cabinets across eight floors with more than 125,000 gross sq feet (11,500 sq meters) of data centre space.

Equinix noted that it operates multiple Amsterdam data centre campuses, with the addition of AM4 adding capacity to meet growing demand for hybrid cloud, interconnection and connectivity to business ecosystems across vertical markets and Internet exchanges. The company noted that according to the European Commission's Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) 2017, the Netherlands ranked as the 4th most advanced digital economy in the EU,

The company added that the Netherlands offers connectivity to over 150 global submarine cable systems and Equinix data centres in Amsterdam provide high density networks to offer Dutch businesses greater choice when planning IT projects. In addition, multinationals seeking to expand into Europe also consider Amsterdam a top destination, providing connectivity to around 80% of Europe within 50 milliseconds latency.

Equinix Amsterdam currently has more than 700 customers, provides connections to over 150 network service providers and access to an established cloud ecosystem that includes AWS, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, Microsoft Office 365, Oracle and IBM Softlayer. Equinix also allows buyers and sellers of cloud services to connect via the Equinix Cloud Exchange in Amsterdam and more than 20 markets worldwide.


Separately, Equinix announced an expansion of its presence in the Frankfurt, Germany market with the opening of FR6, the new $96 million IBX data centre located at  Campus Kleyer. The new facility offers low-latency connectivity to Europe and international markets, and is designed to meet enterprises' need for data-intensive applications such as electronic trading, data analytics and IoT scenarios requiring IT deployments closer to the network edge.


Ericsson expands IoT offering with new network services

Ericsson announced it is expanding its cellular IoT software and IoT Accelerator offerings with the introduction of a set of network services designed to enable service providers to efficiently address the deployment and operation of the massive number of IoT devices that are being connected to LTE networks.

Designed for use with Cat-M1 (also called LTE-M) and Narrow Band IoT (NB-IoT) technologies, the new services include IoT network design and optimisation, deployment and operation and management, and are supported by Ericsson's recently expanded support services offering.

Ericsson has also introduced new IoT software features, including Voice over LTE (VoLTE) support for Cat-M1. This feature allows operators to develop new use cases in which it can be advantageous for IoT devices to support voice services, thereby enabling enterprise services to be expanded to areas such as security alarm panels, remote first-aid kits, wearables, digital locks, disposable security garments and other IoT-enabled applications and services.

The new offering also provides network design and optimisation for heterogeneous IoT networks and use cases that will require a different approach to network planning and design. To address this need, Ericsson is introducing scenario assessment, network modelling, design development and developmental appraisal capabilities designed for large scale IoT networks.

In addition, Ericsson offers expanded network operation and management features to address the need for a new approach to management and operation of networks. Specifically, it is introducing automated machine learning tools for its network operations centres (NOCs), which are designed to help operators manage delivery costs and proactively manage events and incidents. Ericsson stated that in a trial, 80% of incidents were identified by machine learning only, with the root cause correctly identified in 77% of cases.

The Ericsson network services and VoLTE for IoT software support in radio and core networks are commercially available.



* Recently, Ericsson, together with China Unicom and Qualcomm Technologies, announced they had demonstrated Cat-M1 VoLTE use cases at Mobile World Congress Shanghai. The demonstrations involved Ericsson's IoT and VoLTE-capable network infrastructure, IoT devices integrated with Qualcomm MDM9206 global multimode LTE IoT modems, and China Unicom's radio spectrum and verification of the technology and multi-service capabilities.

Windstream joins ONAP project

Windstream, a major provider of advanced network communications services, announced that it has joined the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) Project as part of its commitment to work with peers in the open source community and to support the development of global standards for software defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualisation (NFV) technologies.

Windstream is a leader in implementing SDN technology, and as part of this effort recently launched its Software Defined Network Orchestrated Waves (SDNow) solution. Through membership of ONAP the company will be able to leverage the project's resources to promote technology standardisation and adoption in a complex, multi-vendor environment. It will also help Windstream to progressively develop its solutions for all customer segments and implement the technology to automate service ordering and installation.



  • Formed through the merger of AT&T's open source ECOMP and the Open Orchestrator Project (OPEN-O) open source networking initiatives, ONAP, a Linux Foundation project, is focused on creating a comprehensive framework for real-time, policy-driven software automation of virtual network functions. The project aims to enable software, network equipment, IT and cloud providers and developers to create advanced new services.
  • Windstream launched its SDNow Waves for data centre cloud applications in May. The company noted that leveraging a devops-style approach to automation development enables it to abstract the complexity of service delivery and offer a simplified view of the multi-vendor optical layer. SDNow Waves offers optical wave services based on multi-vendor service orchestration and automated provisioning across the Windstream long-haul core network and was initially available at five third-party, carrier neutral U.S. data centres.
  • Previously, Windstream launched a SD-WAN solution for the reseller community following the launch in January of its SD-WAN solution based on VeloCloud technology that uses SDN to dynamically route traffic over a combination of private and public access types to multiple locations.

Deep Blue Cable selects TE SubCom for Caribbean Cable

Deep Blue Cable based in St. Lucia, the developer, owner and operator of a subsea fibre-optic system that will provide connectivity across the Caribbean islands and the Americas, announced it has contracted TE SubCom to build and deploy the new Deep Blue subsea cable system.

Deep Blue's pan-Caribbean system spans nearly 12,000 km and will feature initial landing points in 12 markets across the region, including the Cayman Islands, CuraƧao, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago and Turks and Caicos Islands. The system will also offer dual diverse landings in the U.S., including the first cable landing on the Gulf Coast of Florida. The company plans to implement 40 cable landings for the system and to enable connectivity to 28 island nations in the region.

The Deep Blue subsea cable system will offer an initial design capacity of 6 Tbit/s per fibre pair over up to 8 fibre pairs and will utilise TE SubCom's proven OADM (optical add/drop multiplexer) branching unit technology, Route survey work for the cable is due to begin in August, followed by cable installation that is scheduled to start in September 2018. The system is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2019.

The network is designed to offer increased capacity and lower costs for residential and business customers in the region, as well as providing lower latency via direct connectivity between key traffic hubs and improved reliability. In addition, the Deep Blue cable will provide optical add/drop connection points to smaller markets in the region.

http://www.te.com/usa-en/industries/subsea-communications/news.html


i3 Broadband expands FTTH to Champaign-Urbana, Illinois

Illinois-based i3 Broadband, a neighbourhood provider of fibre optic Internet services, announced it is to commence network construction in multiple neighbourhoods as it continues its multi-year, multi-million dollar investment to extend the fibre network throughout Champaign-Urbana, Illinois.

i3 Broadband is deploying FTTH infrastructure to deliver its gigabit broadband, video and voice services. The company noted that to support its latest fibre network expansion it plans to hire local technicians and other staff later in the year.

i3 Broadband is the new local commercial partner that is working with the UC2B not-for-profit board to extend fibre connectivity to homes and businesses. The current network expansion will extend the initial UC2B fibre backbone build-out carried out in 2010-13 that was supported by $26 million in federal and state grants and in-kind contributions from the cities of Champaign and Urbana and the University of Illinois.

i3 Broadband is continuing its partnership with UC2B to plan neighbourhood build-outs and to support a community benefit fund that will help address technology adoption barriers for disadvantaged community groups in the area.

In November 2016, CountryWide Broadband (CWB) announced that iTV-3, a company wholly-owned by CWB and Seaport Capital of New York, had acquired the assets of ITV-3, which provided FTTP-based services to communities in and around
Peoria, Illinois. Following the transaction iTV-3 was to operate as i3 Broadband.

The companies noted that CWB had continued the expansion of iTV-3 prior to completing the acquisition, having worked with ITV-3 to extend its network into 10 new neighbourhoods in the Peoria market. At the time iTV-3/i3 stated it planned to continue the expansion of the system, both in terms of customers and through the construction of new fibre infrastructure in the greater Peoria area.




  • CWB, headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, is a broadband acquisition and management firm headed by a management team with broad expertise in the fibre, cable and telephone industries. The company has a strategy of acquiring, consolidating and expanding broadband properties in markets throughout the U.S.

See also