Thursday, April 20, 2017

Big Switch enhances Big Cloud Fabric

Big Switch Networks, a supplier of next-generation data centre networking solutions, announced it has extended Big Cloud Fabric (BCF) container networking support to VMware vSphere integrated containers, building on the previously introduced multi-container networking support for Mesosphere DC/OS and Kubernetes container orchestration platforms, including Red Hat OpenShift container platform.

Big Switch noted that as demand for container technology grows in enterprise and service provider data centres, a next-generation networking architecture is required to handle the rapid lifecycle of container instantiation, elasticity and retirement. BCF uses SDN to provide a single 'logical switch' managed by a centralised controller, enabling simplified network operations, visibility and telemetry of containers and their hosts, and network automation for application and micro-services deployment.

vSphere integrated containers allow organisations to use existing infrastructure to run containerised apps together with traditional applications on the same infrastructure, as well as implement tools, policies and processes to manage containerised applications in production. With the enhanced BCF, customers gain the same benefits for networking infrastructure hosting a mix of traditional VM and containerised workloads.

In container environments, the Big Switch BCF controller enables physical network automation as well as providing greater visibility of container-to-container traffic across the network through integration with vSphere integrated containers.

Big Cloud Fabric is designed to offer an optimised networking fabric for multiple VMware solutions via a single point of integration. Within VMware environments, BCF connects with the VMware vCenter API to provide physical network automation and end-to-end visibility for vSphere. In addition, the BCF controller directly integrates into vCenter to help simplify and automate application deployments on its physical SDN fabric and physical networks.

This BCF integration allows the following aspects of the network to be automated, eliminating the need for intervention from VM or network administrator: automatic ESXi host connectivity with fabric using LAG/MLAG; automated Layer 2 network configuration; and automatic network policy migration for vMotion.

Integrated VMware visibility via BCF also helps network and virtualisation administrators to resolve cross-domain issues, while vSphere integrated containers provide enterprise container infrastructure to help IT teams run both traditional and containerised applications on a common platform. Combined with BCF, the same physical infrastructure can be logically provisioned and orchestrated in different VMware environments for workloads including vSphere, vSphere + NSX, vSphere + vSAN, VMware integrated OpenStack and vSphere integrated containers.

In addition, the scale-out architecture of BCF can accommodates growth in east-west traffic with the roll-out of micro-services.

See also