Monday, March 24, 2014

Cisco Plans "World's Largest Global Intercloud"

Cisco announced plans to build "the world’s largest global Intercloud" – a network of clouds – together with a set of partners.  The idea is to leverage a distributed network and security architecture designed for high-value application workloads, real-time analytics, “near infinite” scalability and full compliance with local data sovereignty laws. Cisco's open Intercloud promises APIs for rapid application development and a new enterprise-class portfolio of cloud IT services for businesses, service providers and resellers. It will support OpenStack and multiple hypervisors. It will also leverage Cisco's recently announced Application Centric Infrastructure.

Cisco plans to invest over $1 billion to build its expanded cloud business over the next two years following a "partner-centric" business model.  The Cisco Intercloud will be hosted across a global network of Cisco data centers and partner data centers. It will offer value-added application- and network-centric cloud services to accelerate the Internet of Everything.

The first companies either planning to deliver Cisco Cloud Services, or who have endorsed Cisco’s global Intercloud initiative, include:

  • Telstra (Australia); 
  • Allstream (Canada); 
  • Canopy, an Atos company (Europe); 
  • Ingram Micro Inc., a cloud services aggregator, provider and wholesale technology distributor; 
  • Logicalis Group, a global IT and managed services provider; 
  • MicroStrategy, global provider of enterprise software platforms for business intelligence, mobile intelligence, and network applications; 
  • OnX Managed Services, an enterprise data center IT solutions provider ; 
  • SunGard Availability Services, an information availability services provider; 
  • Wipro Ltd., a leading global IT, consulting and outsourcing company. 

“Customers, providers and channel partners alike are turning to Cisco to create open and highly secure hybrid cloud environments, and they want to rapidly deploy valuable enterprise-class cloud experiences for key customers – all while mitigating the risk of capital investment,” said Robert Lloyd, president of development and sales, Cisco. “The timing is right for Cisco and its partners to invest in a groundbreaking, application-centric global Intercloud to provide broader reach and faster time to market. Together, we have the capability to enable a seamless world of many clouds in which our customers have the choice to enable the right, highly secure cloud for the right workload, while creating strategic advantages for rapid innovation, and ultimately, business growth.”

Cisco noted that its Cloud Services portfolio already includes SaaS offerings, such as WebEx, Meraki and Cisco Cloud Web Security; differentiated cloud services, such as hosted collaboration and cloud DVR; and technologies and services to build public and private clouds, such as the Cisco Unified Computing System (Cisco UCS), integrated infrastructure solutions such as VCE Vblock Systems and NetApp FlexPod, and Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI).

http://blogs.cisco.com/news/introducing-ciscos-global-intercloud/
http://newsroom.cisco.com/press-release-content?type=webcontent&articleId=1373639


  • This week, Cisco is hosting a Partner Summit at The Venetian Resort in Las Vegas.
  • In November 2013, Cisco unveiled its Application Centric Infrastructure for data centers and clouds. In a press event in New York, John Chambers described ACI as the next big transformation of the IT industry driven by imperatives of the application economy.

    ACI is a step beyond virtualization and software-defined networks (SDN), said Chambers, because it brings agility and automation with full visibility and integrated management of both physical and virtual networked IT resources at the system, tenant, and application levels.  The architecture promises a pay-as-you-grow mode scaling to over 100,000 switch ports and capable of supporting more than one million IP end points in a data center spine with 60 Tbps capacity.  A key premise is that the network should adapt to application requirements through dynamic insertion and chaining of physical and virtual L4-7 network services including firewalls, application delivery controllers, and intrusion detection systems.  The new architecture is designed for multi-tenant cloud environments by providing real-time view of per tenant and per application health, statistics, and troubleshooting.  Real-time analytics will be used to drive intelligent application placement decisions.

    The foundation for ACI is an Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC), enhanced versions of the NX-OS data center switching operating system, and a new line of Nexus 9000 data center switches based on technology from Insieme Networks, the Cisco spin-in start-up that is being acquired and re-integrated into the company.
  • In January, IBM announced plans to invest $1.2 billion to expand its cloud business and build on its acquisition of Softlayer data centers last year. The plans call for 15 new data centers worldwide, including new Softlayer facilities in Washington D.C., Mexico City, Dallas, China, Hong Kong, London, Japan, India and Canada. The expansion will bring the number of IBM cloud data centers to about 40 worldwide.

    Earlier in the year, IBM acquired SoftLayer Technologies, which operates 13 data centers in the United States, Asia and Europe.  Bloomberg valued the deal at about $2 billion.

    SoftLayer allows clients to buy enterprise-class cloud services on dedicated or shared servers, offering clients a choice of where to deploy their applications. The company is based in Dallas, Texas, and serves approximately 21,000 customers.  

    The acquisition strengthened IBM's position in cloud computing.  At the time of the deal, IBM said its expects to reach $7 billion annually in cloud revenue by the end of 2015.

    IBM also announced the formation of a new Cloud Services division. The new division will provide a broad range of choices to both IBM and SoftLayer clients, ISVs, channel partners and technology partners. SoftLayer’s services will complement the existing portfolio with its focus, simplicity and speed. The division will report to Erich Clementi, Senior Vice President, IBM Global Technology Services. IBM plans to expand SoftLayer cloud offerings to include OpenStack capabilities.

Dimension Data Adds Cloud Private Network Connection Option

Dimension Data, which is the global ICT solutions provider owned by NTT, will begin offering a Cloud Private Network Connection (CPNC) add-on service for its enterprise-class public, private and managed hosting cloud offerings.

CPNC services allow clients to establish a dedicated network connection between their own network and Dimension Data's Managed Cloud Platform locations to provide greater control and security over their data in the cloud.

Dimension Data offers two options for clients wanting a global, high-performance and secure method to access their Dimension Data cloud and managed hosting environments without traversing the public Internet:

  • Direct Connect – access to a dedicated, physical port at the MCP location at a speed of 1Gbps
  • Private Connect – access to a virtual port via a partner MPLS provider at flexible speed options

"CPNC replicates the security, connectivity and responsiveness that enterprises are accustomed to from their own wide area and local area networks. Enterprises that have delayed the migration of production systems and applications to the cloud due to connectivity concerns can now utilize this new service to deliver certainty in network performance and throughput," stated Gerard Florian, director of product management at Dimension Data.

http://www.dimensiondata.com/en-US

Palo Alto Networks to Acquire Cyvera for $200 Million

Palo Alto Networks agreed to acquire Cyvera, a privately held cybersecurity company located in Tel-Aviv, Israel, for approximately $200 million.

Palo Alto said Cyvera's approach to end-point security is revolutionary and simple: understand the techniques used to exploit networks then employ a series of roadblocks and traps to prevent an attacker from successfully exploiting that vulnerability. Cyvera claims its approach has been so powerful that they’ve successfully stopped every published zero-day attack since they first began deploying their product.

Cyvera will be combined with Palo Alto's next-generation firewall and its next-generation threat cloud/   represents the most innovative, integrated, and automated enterprise security platform in the market. As we bring this acquisition to a close we look forward to sharing many more details with you. Our two companies have had a longstanding relationship that’s only going to grow as we bring our technologies together to offer the most effective approach to protecting you from the most advanced cyber attacks.

"This event marks a key milestone in our strategic enterprise security vision.  It extends our next-generation security platform with a very innovative approach to preventing attacks on the endpoint.  It enables us to accelerate the delivery of the market’s only highly integrated and automated enterprise security platform spanning network, endpoints, and the cloud.  For customers, this translates into the most sophisticated and automated threat prevention for their entire organization," stated Mark McLaughlin, President and CEO of Palo Alto Networks.

https://www.paloaltonetworks.com/company/press/2014/palo-alto-networks-announces-agreement-to-acquire-cyvera.html
http://cyvera.com/paloaltonetworks/

Buick Builds AT&T LTE into 2015 Cars

Most 2015 Buick models will come with OnStar 4G LTE and a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing passengers to browse the Internet, download movies, play games or send email on up to seven devices at once.  The connectivity will be provided by AT&T.

Buick announced today at the DENT Conference that the 2015 LaCrosse, Regal, Verano and Encore would come standard with OnStar 4G LTE hardware, with data packages available for an additional charge. Available in the U.S. and Canada, OnStar 4G LTE hardware will be in every Buick model by the 2016 model year.

“Today’s Buick lineup is full of technologies that help make our owners safer and more secure than they would be without them,” said Tony DiSalle, vice president of Buick Marketing. “With the introduction of high-speed OnStar 4G LTE, Buick owners will be better connected as well.”

Buick will also offer its own AppShop.  Initial apps will include iHeartRadio, Priceline.com, the Weather Channel, NPR, Slacker Radio, Cityseeker, Eventseeker, Glympse and Kaliki.

Current AT&T customers can add their vehicle to a shareable bucket of data through AT&T Mobile Share plans. All drivers can pay for data through OnStar, independently from their other mobile data accounts. Pricing and data packages for OnStar 4G LTE will be announced later this year.

http://media.gm.com/media/us/en/gm/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2014/mar/0324-4glte-gm.html

Box.net Files for IPO

Box filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed initial public offering of its common stock.

http://www.box.net


  • Box, which was founded in 2005, has evolved from being a cloud storage provider to an "enterprise platform" in which its API provides app developers with easy access to its infrastructure. Box claims more than 20 million users worldwide at more than 180,000 businesses.
  • Box is based in Los Altos, California.
  • In December, Box announced $100 million in new venture funding and strategic partnerships with with Itochu Technology Ventures, Macnica, Mitsui USA, MKI, Telef├│nica Digital and Telstra.  Coatue, DST Global, and existing Box investors also participated.


Infonetics: Bare Metal Switch Market Has Potential

The bare metal switch market has the potential to transform a significant portion of the Ethernet switching market into a disaggregated model, similar to the server market, according to a new report from Infonetics Research.

“There’s still room for best-of-breed in the Ethernet switch market, but as the industry moves beyond early adopters and the early market for data center fabrics, the next wave of adoption has to be made simpler for the ‘main street’ buyer,” notes Cliff Grossner, Ph.D., directing analyst for data center and cloud at Infonetics Research. “This will keep the market for best-of-breed solutions healthy even as a portion of the data center Ethernet switch market turns to bundled solutions.  The shift to cloud-architected data centers with automated deployment of virtual workloads will require storage networking to be more agile, driving the need for a converged network with storage and application traffic on Ethernet."

Some highlights:

  • Data center Ethernet switch ports sold as part of a bundled solution made up 27% of all data center ports shipped in 2013, growing to 45% in 2018
  • Nearly half of all converged data center network ports shipped in 4Q13 will carry storage traffic
  • Infonetics forecasts Ethernet switch ports-in-use for storage to reach 55% of all data center purpose-built switch ports shipped in 2018
  • Switch ports-in-use for Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) are expected to account for 22% of all data center purpose-built ports shipped in 2018.

http://www.infonetics.com

See also