Monday, February 23, 2009

Juniper Outlines Next Gen Silicon and Data Center Visions

Juniper Networks is uniquely focused as a "pure play" in high-performance networking said company CEO Kevin Johnson, speaking at Juniper's Analyst Day conference in San Mateo, California. While the downturn has impacted the company's near-term sales visibility, Johnson said Juniper remains focused on its the long-term margins and the value proposition of high-performance networking, a segment it believes must rebound to handle the challenges of billions of interconnected devices on a global scale. By 2012, the company foresees a global market of 5 billion overall Internet connections, including 1.5 billion broadband lines, 120 million FTTH lines and 700 million smartphones.

Johnson said Juniper will continue a partnership strategy with other technology players rather than pursue big acquisitions.

Assuming challenging economic conditions will continue in the near term, Juniper has implemented a number of measures to trim its operational expenses. These cost reduction actions include realigning the employee bonus plan; implementing a 5% pay cut for VPs and above; mandatory PTO shutdowns; releasing contractors; eliminating merit pay increases; implementing a headcount freeze excluding R&D; reducing employee mobility; freezing all non-essential travel; and canceling travel for internal meetings. Kevin Johnson has also taken a 10% cut in base salary. Earlier this quarter, Juniper realigned its organization and approximately 100 employees were let go.

However, Juniper expects its R&D investments will increase in 2009 vs. 2008 to capitalize on the high performance networking vision.

On the technology front, Pradeep Sindhu, Juniper's CTO and founder, said high-performance networking can be distinguished by five factors: scalability, speed, reliability, security and simplicity. Juniper's Junos operating system is the crown jewel for mastering each of these technical challenges. Sindhu noted that there has been a 4X increase in network system capacity every two years since Juniper was founded. This boost has been enabled by Juniper's custom silicon, which outperforms merchant silicon. To keep this trend going, Sindhu unveiled plans for Juniper's next generation network instruction set processor (NISP). Calling this a fundamental advance in networking silicon, Sindhu said key features of the NISP will include:

  • based on 65nm technology versus current 90nm

  • 4 chips in the set

  • 1.2 billion transistors

  • 604 Gbps of internal throughput

  • can be used for fabric engines, core engines, edge engines and services engines

Rollout schedules were not discussed.

Juniper also disclosed "The Stratus Project", a multi-year company initiative to build a next-gen fabric for cloud computing data centers. Stratus is a type of flat, single-layer cloud. Using this model, Juniper intends to create a new data center network architecture capable of scaling to tens of thousands of 10GigE ports while offering an order of magnitude reduction in latency. Security would be virtualized in the cloud and the entire infrastructure would be managed by a single, large Junos switch. Sindhu noted that legacy Ethernet, Infiniband and Fibre Channel all have shortcomings as an ideal data center networking protocol, so the company is pursuing a breakthrough replacement. Juniper's Stratus Project will leverage its next generation silicon technology, however, for competitive reasons, said the company is not yet ready to disclose product names, milestones, pricing or availability. Stratus will build on Juniper's L4-7 expertise while relying on key partners for storage and computing.

The Stratus Project is being developed by a new Data Center Business Group, which will be led by Dr. David Yen, Executive Vice President. The company said its Stratus research has resulted in more than 30 patent applications filed to date.

On the marketing front, Juniper is revamping its branding, launching a new company website, and launching a new advertising campaign with the theme "Demand More from Your Network." The company's previous "Toons" advertising has been retired.

Juniper Adds 24-Port 10 Gigabit Ethernet Switch

Juniper Networks is expanding its EX Ethernet switching product portfolio with a new EX2500 line of 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) switches targeted at high-density 10GbE deployments. The EX2500 line of 10GbE Ethernet switches offer twenty-four 10 GbE SFP+ ports that deliver wire-speed performance and 700 nanosecond latency. The EX2500 line of Ethernet switches will be offered as fixed-configuration Ethernet platforms. Key features include:

  • Wire-rate Performance: The EX2500 Series will support 480 Gigabit per second (Gbps) throughput (full duplex) in a 1 rack-unit (RU) footprint. All ports are non-blocking with deterministic latency of less than 700 nanoseconds.

  • Deployment Flexibility: The EX2500 Series will support both back-to-front and front-to-back cooling, which will deliver deployment flexibility and consistency with server designs for hot- and cold-aisle layouts. The result will be that network ports can always have the best proximity, front or rear-facing, to allow closer proximity to server ports and thus, keep cable lengths short and easily managed, and performance optimized.

  • High Availability: The EX2500 Series will offer both power and fan redundancy as standard features. The EX2500 Series will come with dual, load-sharing power supplies, as well as redundant, variable-speed fans to protect from single power supply or fan failure.

  • Energy Efficiency: The EX2500 Series will improve availability and cooling efficiency via redundant variable speed fans. The variable speed fans will automatically adjust speed under variant conditions to reduce power consumption.

The EX2500 Series is expected to be available in 2Q 2009. The list price for the EX2500 Series starts at US$18,000.

Juniper's EX Series switching family now includes the EX2500, EX3200, EX4200 and new EX8200 lines.
  • In November 2008, Juniper Networks introduced a data center switching solution that leverages its EX series Ethernet switches, high-densities of 1 and 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) ports, JUNOS operating software and "virtualized chassis" technology. Essentially, the new data switching solution aims to remove an entire tier of aggregation switches and supporting security platforms typically seen in today's mid-to-large sized corporate data centers. Juniper achieves this by allowing up to ten 48-port EX 4200 switches to be logically aggregated into a single virtual switch. This saves interconnect and uplink ports, as well as eliminates the need to deploy the typical panoply of security appliances. A single SRX-series platform can now serve this role. Juniper estimates its data center architecture can significantly reduce network complexity and total cost of ownership by up to 52 percent in capital expenditures, up to 44 percent in power, up to 44 percent in cooling and up to 55 percent in rack space. In addition, by deploying Juniper MX-series edge routers, IP/MPLS Layer 3 VPNs can be mapped via the EX switches directly to individual servers in the data center. Mirroring and back-up applications can also be mapped via VPNs to secondary data centers.

Ikanos VDSL2 Chipsets Selected by Alloptic for GigE PON Terminals

Alloptic has selected Ikanos Communications' VDSL2 central office (CO) and customer premises equipment (CPE) chipsets for integration into the Xgen7500 gigabit Ethernet passive optical network terminal (ONT). The Ikanos chipsets enable the Xgen7500 to deliver 24 ports of up to 100 Mbps voice, data and video services over traditional copper wiring.

Ikanos' multimode FxTM100100-5 VDSL2 CO and FxTM100100S-5 VDSL2 CPE chipsets are optimized for IPTV and triple play offerings -- offer service providers a seamless migration path on which they can maximize their existing investments in broadband infrastructure.

"The Ikanos chipsets allow us to provide an incredibly cost-effective solution for high-speed access from a temperature-hardened ONT in brownfield situations. These locations include residential neighborhoods, business parks and multi-dwelling units of all kinds -- apartments, office buildings, dormitories -- where replacing existing copper wiring with fiber optics is expensive and often impractical," said Shane Eleniak, vice president of marketing and business development for Alloptic.

VISTO to Acquire Good Technology From Motorola

VISTO, which offers a mobile push and synchronization platform for service providers, will acquire Motorola's Good Technology division. Financial terms were not disclosed. The deal is expected to close by the end of February.

Good Technology specializes in offering wireless messaging, mobile VPN data access, device management and handheld security for enterprise customers worldwide. The addition of Good's service offerings in the U.S. Europe and Asia will enable VISTO to provide its government and enterprise customers with a broader range of secure mobile offerings.

"This transaction marks another important milestone in VISTO's emergence as a worldwide leader for mobile access to applications and content, especially messaging and collaboration data. Good's robust enterprise and government solution will complement VISTO's strong operator presence in business and consumer markets," said Brian A. Bogosian, CEO of VISTO. "As a result of this transaction, VISTO will now provide customers in over 100 countries an open, robust and secure mobile experience for enterprise customers, on over 400 different mobile devices."

Visto is based in Redwood Shores, California, and has offices in Seattle, Toronto, London, Milan, Paris, Madrid, Dusseldorf, and Tianjin, China. The Company is backed by Oak Investment Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Altitude Capital Partners, Meritech Capital Partners, DFJ ePlanet Ventures, DFJ Growth Fund, Rustic Canyon Ventures, GKM Newport, Stanford Accelerator and Blueprint Ventures.
  • In November 2006. Motorola acquired Good Technology, a supplier of enterprise mobile computing software and service, for an undisclosed sum. At the time, Good's mobile messaging client was supported on the newly launched Motorola Q handheld, among other devices. Good Technology's software and service offerings enable wireless messaging, data access and handheld security. Good Mobile Messaging and Good Mobile Intranet solutions extend enterprise applications - including Microsoft Outlook, Lotus Domino, intranets and certain web-enabled corporate applications - to mobile employees by using end-to-end AES encrypted, FIPS 140-2 certified security, and cradle-free, real-time two-way wireless synchronization.

Motorola Reinforces Commitment to TD-LTE

Motorola re-confirmed its pursuit of Time Division Duplex Long-Term Evolution (TD-LTE) commercialization, saying it has agreed to collaborate with operators on TD-LTE trials to be conducted during 2009.

As one of the leaders in LTE RAN contributions, Motorola supports both TD-LTE and Frequency Division Duplex LTE (FDD-LTE). Motorola is planning an LTE ecosystem to support the early deployments from Q4 2009 to mid-2010.

Motorola noted that it is a member of the LTE/System Architecture Evolution (SAE) Trial Initiative (LSTI). This industry group is driving the acceleration of commercial and inter-operable next-generation LTE mobile broadband systems through the collaborative efforts of leading telecommunications companies worldwide. The LSTI helps support Motorola's dedication and technology advancements that will deliver the media mobility experiences that consumers expect.

Motorola's LTE solution is comprised of its OFDM broadband platform and a selection of radio options that include MIMO and smart antennas. The portfolio includes frame based-mounted radios, remote radio heads and tower top radios to support a wide variety of LTE deployment scenarios across a wide variety of spectrum bands to meet the needs of the global market.

Motorola Hits 1 Million TETRA Terminals Milestone

Motorola announced the shipment of its one millionth TETRA terminal. The customer receiving this milestone terminal is the Jordan Armed Forces (JAF).

Motorola will supply TETRA portable devices, including MTH800 terminals, MTM800 Enhanced mobiles and CM5000 TETRA Gateway repeaters for use on JAF's TETRA network, providing increased security across Jordan.

Motorola shipped its first TETRA terminal in the late 1990s.

Global Crossing Pursues Multiple-Partner Content Delivery Network Services

Global Crossing plans to enter the market for content delivery network (CDN) services by forming relationships with several vendors. The company's entry into the CDN market would enable the company to offer customers industry-leading solutions for the delivery of rich media content and enterprise applications.

Global Crossing said its strategy to partner with multiple CDN partners promises to improve customer satisfaction by allowing its customers to select the right CDN solution for the appropriate business requirement. Businesses often employ multiple CDNs to take advantage of best-in-class services for specific requirements.

"We're combining the advantages of our industry-leading Global IP backbone with market-leading CDN services to simplify content delivery through an end-to-end solution," said Dave Carey, Global Crossing's chief marketing officer. "This strategy will enhance the significant cost and performance benefits of our IP data offerings and build upon our commitment to provide a full suite of services that allow multi-national corporations to focus on their core businesses."

Marvell Introduces SheevaPlug for Mini Home Server

Marvell announced its Plug Computing initiative to make high-performance, always on, always connected, and environmentally friendly computing. A Plug Computer is defined as something that is small enough to plug directly into a wall socket and is designed to draw so little power that it can be left on all of the time. Unlike other embedded devices in the home, it contains a gigahertz class processor to offer PC class performance. Such a device could be used as a home server or network controller.

The SheevaPlug development platform uses a Marvell Kirkwood processor based on an embedded 1.2GHz Sheeva CPU equipped with 512 Mbytes of FLASH and 512 Mbytes of DRAM. Connection to the home network is via Gigabit Ethernet. Peripherals such as direct attached storage can be connected using a USB 2.0 port. Multiple standard Linux 2.6 kernel distributions are supported on the SheevaPlug development platform enabling rapid application development. The enclosure is designed to plug directly into a standard wall socket and is designed to draw less than one tenth of the power of a typical PC being used as a home server.

"There is no doubt that home networks need to become more intelligent and easier to use by offering value added services for the consumer," said Dr. Simon Milner, Vice President and General Manager of the Enterprise Business Unit, Consumer and Communications Business Group at Marvell Semiconductor. "We have created an open computing platform for developers in a consumer and eco-friendly form factor. Marvell's goal is to accelerate the development and availability of innovative software and services in the home."

Early adopters of plug computing began to launch Marvell based products at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2009. These include: Axentra, Cloud Engines, CTERA Networks, and Eyecon Technologies.

The SheevaPlug development kit is available now for $99.

VUDU Expands its Rental Model by Selling Movies in HD

VUDU has begun to sell high definition movies via download to own on its 1080p Internet Movie Player. Until now consumers have been restricted to renting HD movies from on- demand services, including VUDU's library of over 1,400 HD movies. VUDU has unveiled a collection of over 50 HD movies from top independent studios that are available for both rental and download to own. High definition titles purchased from VUDU can be stored on the consumer's VUDU box or in the VUDU Vault, a free online storage option for movies and TV shows that enables consumers to free up disk space while still retaining access to all their purchased titles. Movies are priced between $13.99 and $23.99.

VUDU's library of more than 14,000 movies and TV episodes, including more than 1,400 HD films, is updated weekly with new releases and library titles.

ZTE Announces EV-DO Rev B VoIP Call on CDMA2000 System

ZTE announced a technological milestone -- achieving the world's first EV-DO Revision B (Rev.B) VoIP Call on its CDMA2000 system, marking the first time in the industry that a CDMA vendor achieved a 9.3 Mbps download rate and 5.4 Mbps upload rate. Specifically, ZTE completed the first stage of achieving EV-DO Rev.B and adopted 3-carrier bundling technology, with each carrier having a bandwidth of 1.25 MHz. Compared with mature commercial EV-DO Rev.A, ZTE said its implementation of EV-DO Rev.B upgrades EV-DO Rev.A's software with no additional hardware equipment required. Both ZTE's EV-DO Rev.A and Rev.B adopt the same baseband chipset.

In future, EV-DO Rev.B can bundle up to a maximum of 15 carriers, with a download (forward) rate of 73.5 Mbps and an upload (reverse) rate of 27 Mbps. Among the unique features of EV-DO Rev.B include allocating flexible bandwidth and offering better QoS, hence enhancing user experience.

The announcement was made at the recently concluded 3GPP2 Standards Conference 2009 held in Shanghai, China from February 16-24, which was jointly organized by ZTE and China Telecom.

ZTE plans to commercialize its EV-DO Rev.B system in Q3 2009, reaffirming its leading position in EV-DO technology development.

There are now more than 105 million EV-DO users worldwide. To date, ZTE has established 70 EV-DO networks in more than 60 countries, including China, the United States, Czech, Poland, India and Indonesia.

Verizon Business Completes Examination of Internet Data Centers

Verizon Business has completed its annual SAS 70 Type II examination for the company's five IP Application Hosting Centers (Smart Centers) in Germany, Japan, the U.S. and the U.K., and its 15 Premium Internet Data Centers in North America. All the facilities are used to deliver IT services to large-enterprise and government customers. Specifically, Ernst & Young LLP performed the yearly examinations, reviewing control objectives and controls at the company's managed and Internet colocation data centers. Specific areas of examination, which is conducted in compliance with the standards established by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, included access to facilities, logical access to systems, network services operations and environmental safeguards. Control processes and procedures were examined for all of the company's Managed Hosting centers, as well as 15 Premium Internet Data Centers in major cities across North America, including Atlanta, Houston and San Jose, Calif.

Microsoft Research Show Cloud Computing, Data Center Innovations

Two data center technologies are among the research projects on display at this the Microsoft Research TechFest 2009 this week:

  • Closed-Loop Control Systems for the Datacenter, a project aimed at improving the energy efficiency of datacenters by selectively putting idle servers into a low-power state while maintaining service response times

  • Low-Power Processors for the Datacenter, an experiment to build a server from low-power processors and evaluate how well it runs some of the tasks typically performed in a datacenter, such as processing a large number of independent requests or running databases for a Web site.

Rick Rashid, senior vice president of Microsoft Research, also announced a new research organization called Cloud Computing Futures aimed at reducing datacenter costs by fourfold or greater, while accelerating deployment and increasing adaptability and resilience to failures. "Our cloud computing research begins with a key concept: the datacenter is a computer, and it must be designed and programmed as an integrated system," Rashid said. The group, led by Dan Reed, director of scalable and multicore systems, will target lowering hardware costs and power consumption, as well as reducing the environmental impact of operations, particularly in carbon emissions.

euNetworks Selects Infinera for 15-City Network

euNetworks has deployed an Infinera Digital Optical Network in a fiber-rich network connecting 15 major cities throughout the heart of Western Europe.

Xantaro Deutschland GmbH, an internationally focused service integrator, carried out planning and implementation of the optical network for euNetworks. Working closely together, Infinera and Xantaro deployed the initial phase of the pan-European network, reaching 14 cities, in just six weeks. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Infinera said rapid deployment of the network was enabled by the expertise of the Infinera and Xantaro engineering teams, backed up by the design of the PIC-based Infinera system which eliminates more than 80 percent of intrabay fiber connections. Infinera's GMPLS-powered IQ network operating system automatically recognizes elements in the network and performs tests on connectivity between network nodes, enabling networks to be configured more easily and quickly than with traditional DWDM systems.

Accenture and Cisco Expand Strategic Alliance

Accenture and Cisco have expanded their strategic alliance to form a virtual group to help large enterprises embed collaboration and data center virtualization capabilities into their key business processes. The Accenture & Cisco Business Group will design, build and run solutions that integrate unified communication and collaboration tools into multiple applications across companies' IT infrastructures. The group will provide the strategy, architecture design and implementation services to integrate technologies such as unified communications, Cisco WebEx collaboration, and Cisco TelePresence - into the companies' core business processes and technology platforms
  • Cisco and Accenture first formed an alliance in January 2004.