Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Cisco Sets Digital Network Architecture as its Platform of the Future

Cisco unveiled its Digital Network Architecture (DNA) for transforming business with the power of analytics driven by programmable networks, cloud applications, open APIs, and virtualization.  The Cisco DNA aims to extend the company's data center-based, policy-driven Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) technology throughout the entire network: from campus to branch, wired to wireless, core to edge.  

Cisco DNA is built on five guiding principles:

  • Virtualize everything to give organizations freedom of choice to run any service anywhere, independent of the underlying platform – physical or virtual, on premise or in the cloud.
  • Designed for automation to make networks and services on those networks easy to deploy, manage and maintain – fundamentally changing the approach to network management.
  • Pervasive analytics to provide insights on the operation of the network, IT infrastructure and the business – information that only the network can provide.
  • Service management delivered from the cloud to unify policy and orchestration across the network - enabling the agility of cloud with the security and control of on premises solutions.
  • Open, extensible and programmable at every layer – Integrating Cisco and 3rd party technology, open API’s and a developer platform, to support a rich ecosystem of network-enabled applications.

“The digital network is the platform for digital business,” said Rob Soderbery, SVP for Enterprise Products and Solutions, Cisco.  “Cisco DNA brings together virtualization, automation, analytics, cloud and programmability to build that platform.  The acronym for the Digital Networking Architecture – DNA – isn’t an accident. We’re fundamentally changing the DNA of networking technology.”

The first deliverables of Cisco DNA include:

DNA Automation:  APIC-Enterprise Module (APIC EM) Platform


  • APIC-EM Platform:  A new version of Cisco’s enterprise controller has been released. Cisco claims 100+ customer deployments running up to 4000 devices from a single instance.  The company is adding automation software that removes the need for staging for pre-configuration or truck roll-outs to remote locations. The Plug and Play agent sits on Cisco routers and switches and talks directly to the network controller. A new EasyQoS service enables the network to dynamically update network wide QoS settings based on application policy.
  • Cisco Intelligent WAN Automation Services: This service automates IWAN deployment and management, providing greater WAN deployment flexibility and allowing IT to quickly configure and deploy a full-service branch office with just 10 clicks.  IWAN automation eliminates configuration tasks for advanced networking features, and automatically enables Cisco best practices, application prioritization, path selection and caching to improve the user experience.
  • DNA Virtualization:  Evolved IOS-XE is a network operating system optimized for programmability, controller-based automation, and serviceability. The new OS provides open model-driven APIs for third party application development, software-defined management, application hosting, edge computing and abstraction from the physical infrastructure to enable virtualization.   It supports the Cisco Catalyst 3850/3650, ASR 1000 and ISR 4000 today, and will continue to be expanded across the Enterprise Network portfolio.

    Evolved Cisco IOS XE includes Enterprise Network Function Virtualization (Enterprise NFV) that decouples hardware from software and gives enterprises the freedom of choice to run any feature anywhere. This solution includes the full software stack - virtualization infrastructure software; virtualized network functions (VNFs) like routing, firewall, WAN Optimization, and WLAN Controller; and orchestration services - to enable branch office service virtualization.
  • DNA Cloud Service Management:  CMX Cloud provides business insights and personalized engagement using location and presence information from Cisco wireless infrastructure.  With CMX Cloud enterprises can provide easy Wi-Fi onboarding, gain access to aggregate customer behavior data, and improve customer engagement. 

Cisco to Acquire Leaba Semiconductor for $320M

Cisco agreed to acquire Leaba Semiconductor, a venture-backed fabless semiconductor company, for $320 million in cash and assumed equity awards, plus additional retention based incentives.

Leaba, which is based in Israel, specializes in networking semiconductors.  The company is in stealth mode and has not announced any products.

The Leaba team will report into Cisco’s Core Hardware Group, led by Senior Vice President, Ravi Cherukuri.

https://blogs.cisco.com/news/networking-semiconductors-news
http://www.leabasemiconductor.com/


  • Leaba Semiconductor is headed by Eyal Dagan, who previously was CEO and co-founder of Dune Networks, a privately-held developer of switch fabric solutions for data center networking equipment that was acquired by Broadcom for approximately $178 million in cash in 2009.

OPNFV Brahmaputra Adds IPv6, VPN Config, Fault Detection

The OPNFV Project, which is the community based effort sponsored by the Linux Foundation to develop an open source platform to accelerate the introduction of Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), announced its OPNFV Brahmaputra release.

Key enhancements in OPNFV Brahmaputra include:

Hardened feature enhancements.
  • Layer 3 VPN instantiation and configuration
  • Initial support for IPv6 deployment and testing in IPv6 environments,
  • Improved fault detection and recovery capabilities via work in OpenStack Neutron and Ceilometer as well as collaborative development work with DPDK
  •  Initial Service Function Chaining capabilities via OpenDaylight Beryllium
  • Basic resource reservation via a shim layer on top of OpenStack
  •  Enhancements in performance and throughput via data plane acceleration and NFV-focused enhancements in OVS and KVM
Enhanced testing capabilities. 



  • Extending the suite of functional tests developed in Arno, Brahmaputra adds system-level testing and multiple performance testing frameworks and methodologies. The Yardstick Project implements system-level validation with baseline testing requirements as outlined in the ETSI TST 001 spec. Additional improvements include detailed vSwitch performance characterization, bottoms-up system performance benchmarking, and the implementation of a performance bottleneck-focused testing framework.

Infrastructure and testing environment advancements.

  • In addition to the bare metal lab hosted by the Linux Foundation, community Pharos labs were used to release validation for Brahmaputra. Additionally, OPNFV’s Jenkins-based continuous integration and continuous deployment toolchain has made great strides in automating all integration and deployment scenarios and associated testing frameworks.


Deployment and integration enhancements. 

  • Brahmaputra contains an increased number of components and scenarios, including support for additional SDN controllers and installers, such as OpenStack Liberty and OpenDaylight Beryllium, which can be used to build the platform.

“Building on the foundation of Arno, the OPNFV community worked tirelessly to integrate and combine components from multiple communities to deliver Brahmaputra, which brings end-to-end feature realization,” said Chris Price, technical steering committee chair, OPNFV and Open Source Manager for SDN, Cloud & NFV, Ericsson. “The impact is substantial; we’ve now established methodologies and mechanisms for further cross-project and feature development.”

“The strength of any open source project depends on the community developing it,” said Heather Kirksey, director, OPNFV. “With an entire industry involved in the development of NFV, we’re seeing more collaboration among key stakeholders across the ecosystem. The strides we made in Brahmaputra create a framework for even more developers to come together and make progress in the journey to NFV.”

https://www.opnfv.org/news-faq/press-release/2016/03/opnfv-delivers-second-release-open-source-network-functions

Samsung Ships its 15.36TB SSD

Samsung Electronics began shipping the industry’s largest solid state drive (SSD) – the “PM1633a,” a 15.36 terabyte (TB) drive.

The new 15.36TB SSD is based on a 12Gb/s Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface, for use in enterprise storage systems. Samsung said the unprecedented 15.36TB of data storage on a single SSD is enabled by combining 512 of its 256Gb V-NAND memory chips. The 256Gb dies are stacked in 16 layers to form a single 512GB package, with a total of 32 NAND flash packages in the 15.36TB drive. Samsung’s 3rd generation, 256-gigabit (Gb) V-NAND technology which stacks cell-arrays in 48 layers.

Because the PM1633a comes in a 2.5-inch form factor, enterprise storage managers can fit twice as many of the drives in a standard 19-inch, 2U rack, compared to an equivalent 3.5-inch storage drive.

http://www.samsung.com

Mellanox Samples its High-end Network Processor

Mellanox Technologies has begun sampling its next generation, NPS-400 network processor, which is capable of performing advanced deep packet processing for security and telecommunications applications at over 800 Gbps.


The NPS features programmable CPU cores that are highly optimized for packet processing and leverage deep packet processing and applications experience, a traffic manager, hardware accelerators for security and DPI (Deep Packet Inspection) tailored for efficiency and performance, on-chip search engines including TCAM with scaling through algorithmic extension to external low-cost low-power DRAM memory and a multitude of network interfaces providing an aggregated bandwidth of 800-Gigabits per second including 10-, 40- and 100-Gigabit Ethernet, Interlaken and PCI Express interfaces. It offers C‑based programming, a standard toolset, support of the Linux operating system, large code space, and a run-to-completion or pipeline programming style. Mellanox supplies a library of source code for a variety of applications.

ZTE plans to use the NPS-400 for its new line cards design for carrier-grade router platforms.

“We are pleased that the NPS network processing unit is now available and shipping to communication technology leaders such as ZTE,” said Marc Sultzbaugh, senior vice president, Mellanox Technologies. “Through the acquisition of EZchip we’ve gained tremendous expertise and advanced network processing capabilities. The NPS is a sixth generation network processor and has evolved to provide unmatched performance and flexibility that meets the needs of the most advanced data center and communications customers.”

http://www.mellanox.com


  • Last month, Mellanox completed its acquisition of EZchip at a total purchase price of approximately $811 million (approximately $606 million net of cash).

TeliaSonera IC Pumps 100G to 365 Data Centers

TeliaSonera International Carrier (TSIC) is now delivering its Tier 1 Internet backbone network service at 100G to 365 Data Centers’ Detroit facility and its customers.

TSIC currently provides 100Gbps IP Transit services to customers in the region and worked with 365 Data Centers last year to provide 100Gbps services in six other cities including Buffalo, N.Y.; Tampa, Fla.; Nashville, Tenn.; St Louis, Mo.; Cleveland, Ohio; and Indianapolis, Ind.

“By partnering with 365 Data Centers, we are able to increase TSIC’s footprint in the Midwest region and enable faster delivery of data and video to local mobile operators, Internet service providers and education networks,” said Art Kazmierczak, Director of Business Development, Americas at TeliaSonera International Carrier Inc. “Detroit continues to grow and diversify in the new digital economy as the Internet of Things meshes with automotive technology and with the concentration of talent, provides the perfect location to service customers throughout the region.”

http://www.teliasoneraic.com

Equinix Plans 4 More Data Centers on 4 Continents

Equinix plans to launch four new data centers on four continents this year, adding nearly 200,000 square feet of new data center space at full build. This brings Equinix’s total global footprint to 14 million square feet, increasing the scale of Platform Equinix by more than 27 percent year-over-year.

The new facilities will be located in Dallas, São Paulo (doubling the company's capacity in Brazil, Sydney (more than doubling colocation space at the existing campus), and Tokyo (its fifth data center in the city).

https://blog.equinix.com/2016/03/equinix-expansion-continues-with-4-new-data-centers-on-4-continents/

See also