Tuesday, August 4, 2015

F5 Refreshes its BIG-IP for Cloud and Hybrid Deployments

F5 Networks announced a major software release of its BIG-IP platform aimed improving the agility, security, and performance of cloud application deployments. The company said its aim with this product update is to help customers to more easily transition workloads to cloud environments as needed and incorporate technologies like HTTP/2, while maintaining the same visibility, security, and control of traditional infrastructures. This includes a BIG-IP virtual edition available in the Microsoft Azure Marketplace.

BIG-IP version 12.0 takes advantage of F5’s application delivery services fabric, extending the F5 Synthesis model by combining physical and virtual resources to better support cloud and hybrid scenarios.  F5’s BIG-IP 12.0 release includes many integrated enhancements to F5’s security and access solutions, with notable examples below:

  • Reliable Access in All Types of IT Environments with SSO – F5 extends secure authentication, authorization, and accounting (AAA) capabilities to cloud-based, web-based, and virtual applications while centrally managing federated identity functions. F5 provides over 5x the scalability of other vendors for applications and identity access management. In addition, F5 is one of the only leading access vendors to extend single sign-on (via SAML) to client-based applications and other browser-less environments, such as Microsoft Office 365.
  • Superior Protection with the Largest DDoS Vector Spectrum and Increased Attack Visibility – With BIG-IP 12.0, F5 offers the most comprehensive and effective mitigations to protect against sophisticated, high-volume DDoS threats on-premises or in the cloud. F5 also helps companies strengthen their security postures and agility with simplified threat visibility, providing thorough drill-down summaries of attack details.
  • Improved SSL Capabilities for Comprehensive Security – Organizations’ use of SSL is rapidly increasing, with many IT teams moving toward an “encrypt everything” approach. BIG-IP provides innovative, integrated SSL encryption and visibility to manage security certificates and keys across physical, virtual, and cloud deployments—all without the blind spots or performance loss typical of other vendors’ offerings.

“Organizations are seeking the same confidence level with applications and services in cloud/hybrid deployments that they’ve seen in the data center,” said Karl Triebes, EVP of Product Development and CTO, F5. “Our BIG-IP software is instrumental in helping customers take advantage of the benefits of the cloud without sacrificing security, flexibility, or savings. With these new technologies, we’re committed to meeting organizations along whatever path they take in evolving hybrid application delivery environments and incorporating cloud.”


Cumulus Releases VX Virtual Appliance Edition of its Linux OS

Cumulus Networks releasesd a free virtual appliance designed to simulate its traditional Cumulus Linux operating system environment for open networking.

Cumulus said its VX (Virtual Experience) provides a way for data center cloud administrators and network engineers to learn, prototype and develop open networking concepts at their own pace, in their own environments. Cumulus VX operates without the need for a bare metal switch or specialized hardware and runs on all popular hypervisors. It is not intended for production usage but allows networking experts to test and configure traditional networking protocols like BGP and MLAG as well as Cumulus Networks-specific technologies such as Prescriptive Topology Manager (PTM).

Key benefits:

  • Learn: Cumulus VX will help IT and network professionals become more familiar with open networking.  
  • Test drive: Prospective customers can shorten the evaluation cycle by testing Cumulus Linux or Cumulus RMP features and functionalities at their own pace in their own environments, without needing to invest in hardware.
  • Prototype: Customers can leverage Cumulus VX to experiment and design rollouts, thus minimizing errors and time to production.  
  • Develop applications: Customers and partners can leverage Cumulus VX to develop custom, portable applications that seamlessly migrate into production Cumulus Linux or Cumulus RMP deployments.

“Open networking is the future. We’re seeing firsthand how organizations of all sizes benefit from embracing it. With Cumulus VX, we’re removing all economic and organizational barriers to make it easier than ever for people who are interested in open networking to try it out,” said Reza Malekzadeh, Vice President of Business, Cumulus Networks. “In addition, our partners are excited to have a way to demonstrate the experience of Cumulus Linux or Cumulus RMP right from their laptops, with no switch hardware required.”

Cumulus VX is available for download now on the Cumulus Networks website.


Menlo Security Adds Webroot to its Isolation Platform

Menlo Security, which offers a security solution that isolates all Web content in the cloud, announced a partnership with Webroot, a leading provider of real-time, actionable threat intelligence.

Webroot will deliver granular threat intelligence for Menlo Security’s Isolation Platform through integration with the Webroot BrightCloud Web Classification Service.

The Web classification data and threat intelligence from Webroot enable administrators of the Menlo Security Web Isolation Platform to establish granular policies that selectively allow, block, or isolate websites based on 83+ categories. This combines the productivity-enhancing benefits of advanced Web filtering with the unique malware-prevention benefits of the Isolation Platform. Additionally, the classification intelligence from Webroot augments the logs and reports provided by the Web Isolation Service, enabling administrators to track and analyze all Web usage.

“Webroot has the most comprehensive and effective Web classification service in the market,” said Poornima DeBolle, chief product officer at Menlo Security. “Integrating the Webroot BrightCloud Web Classification Service with our Web Isolation Platform enables us to give our customers comprehensive control, security, and visibility for their organization’s Web activity.”


In June, Menlo Security emerged from stealth to unveil its Isolation Platform, a new technology that eliminates the threat of malware from key attack vectors, including Web and email.

The solution does not use endpoint software. Instead, the Menlo Security Isolation Platform isolates and executes all Web content in the cloud and away from the endpoint. It uses patent-pending, clientless rendering technology, Adaptive Clientless Rendering (ACR), to deliver a non-executable, malware-free copy of the user’s session to their native browser, creating a transparent user experience.

The Menlo Security Isolation Platform is available now as a public cloud-based service or as a virtual appliance for on-premise deployment. The Platform is compatible with any hardware (desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone), any OS (Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android) and any browser (IE, Chrome, Safari, FireFox).

Menlo Security also announced $25 million in Series B funding, led by new investor Sutter Hill Ventures and joined by existing investors General Catalyst, Osage University Partners and Engineering Capital.

Radian Emerges from Stealth with Optimization for Data Center SSDs

Radian Memory Systems, a start-up based in Calabasas, California, unveiled its "Symphonic" software for optimizing flash storage in data centers.

The company said its technology utilizes conventional SSD hardware to deliver 80% improvements in I/O performance and 10x improvements in critical latency metrics, while at the same time significantly reducing hardware acquisition costs and extending usable product life. The idea is to abstract lower level Flash attributes while enabling the host system software to perform what the company calls Cooperative Flash Management (CFM). Radian’s Symphonic technology is a combination of SSD firmware, host libraries, and an API that replace the Flash‐Translation‐Layer (FTL) traditionally found on SSDs.

Along with the Symphonic software technology, Radian Memory Systems is introducing a line of purpose‐built SSDs for the data center. Beginning with the RMS‐250, a 2.5” NVMe 2TB SSD, each Radian SSD includes the Symphonic firmware and respective host‐based libraries to enable Cooperative Flash Management.

“The biggest barriers to extending Flash penetration in data centers are cost, unpredictable latency spikes, and wear out. At Radian we took a unique approach that addresses each of these challenges at the system level, where applications and data centers can realize the advantages,” said Mike Jadon, Radian’s CEO and co‐founder.


Sandvine Acquires MoMac for Customer Engagement

Sandvine, which supplies network policy control solutions for fixed and mobile operators, has acquired MoMac, , a Netherlands-based  company that sells cloud-based, customer engagement solutions to mobile operators. The purpose price was EUR 7 million.

Sandvine said Momac will enhance its portfolio of Revenue Generation products for its communications service provider (CSP) customers. Specifically, Momac's products will work with Sandvine OutReach to significantly enhance its customer engagement capabilities, such that subscribers are presented with the most relevant message, offer or alert at the right time, on any screen, such that they can take immediate action.

Momac drives customer engagement for leading CSPs by providing on-device user interfaces (browser or native OS application based) that connect the CSP with the customer, bridging the technology gap between internal data systems, service offerings, content and customer care. Momac's products are hosted in the cloud and can be delivered as a subscription or revenue-share service to CSP customers, currently comprising mobile operators in 12 countries.

Momac has 26 employees, based in Rotterdam. Sandvine expects that the acquisition will not have a material impact to revenue nor earnings in fiscal 2015, and expects the acquisition to be slightly accretive to earnings in 2016.

"Momac's products have been primarily used by a CSPs' marketing organizations to rapidly enable promotion and sales of different offerings directly to subscribers. Together, we will build on that capability to create communications campaigns for subscribers that cover a number of use cases, including advice-of-usage, contextual upsell, self-care management, and many others," said Dave Caputo, Sandvine's President and CEO.


Huawei wins largest share of China Mobile VoLTE project

Huawei was awarded the largest share of China Mobile’s VoLTE (CM-IMS phase 2) project, which includes network convergence building and reconstruction across 31 provinces and municipalities in China.

In total, Huawei now expects to capture almost half of the China Mobile VoLTE project share.

China Mobile aims to provide services for 50 million commercial VoLTE subscribers by the end of 2015 or the beginning of 2016, and a key part of this is the evolution of fixed IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) networks to Fixed-Mobile Convergence (FMC) networks across 14 of China’s provinces. Among these 14 provinces, Huawei has won the bid to conduct FMC transformation for 12 developed coastal provinces and cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangdong, Zhejiang, and Jiangsu.


Equinix Expands Data Center in Singapore

Equinix announced the second phase expansion of its third International Business Exchangedata center in Singapore, known as SG3, which is Equinix's largest data center facility in Asia-Pacific. The purpose-built facility has a gross floor area of approximately 385,000 square feet, which can accommodate approximately 5,000 cabinets at full build; 1,000 of which were available in the first phase, increasing by a further 2,000 cabinets in the second phase.

This brings Equinix's total investment in Singapore to over $350M.

Since March, Equinix has opened five new data centers across four continents with locations in New York, Singapore, Melbourne, London, and Toronto.

"Singapore is en-route to becoming a Smart Nation, integrating all aspects of technology into a coherent and cohesive whole to improve the way people live, work and play. We hope to support Singapore's vision by providing our customers with direct access to established business ecosystems. Increasingly companies see great potential in multi-cloud access and the importance of a strong, reliable, yet flexible solution. SG3 phase two was launched to help companies like Fujitsu ensure that they are in a solid position to support their customers' needs," stated Clement Goh, managing director, Equinix South Asia.