Showing posts with label Azure. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Azure. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Gigamon Extends its Visibility Platform for Azure

Gigamon is extending its data-in-motion Visibility Platform to include the Microsoft Azure environment to ensure that data-in-motion entering, traversing or leaving the cloud can be protected and monitored by existing security operations centers.

Key features:

  • One consistent method to acquire network traffic and apply traffic intelligence before distributing to multiple tools.
  • Centralized orchestration and single-pane-of-glass visualization of the Gigamon Visibility Platform across the entire infrastructure – on-premise, public and private cloud. Traffic policies are defined using a simple drag-n-drop user interface.
  • Tight integration with Azure APIs and Azure Monitor to automatically detect changes in Azure Virtual Networks.
  • Centralized visibility for security monitoring of all Azure Virtual Networks in an enterprise.

"Our customers around the globe require a solution that provides the same level of visibility in their cloud, virtualized and on-premise environments allowing them to leverage the knowledge and processes they've built as they work to secure their enterprise and cloud networks," said Ananda Rajagopal, vice president of products at Gigamon.

Gigamon Debuts Visibility Platform on AWS


Gigamon released its data-in-motion visibility platform on AWS. The Gigamon Visibility Platform for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) enables enterprises to gain visibility into network traffic in Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC), eliminating both the visibility gap and the need for custom agents. It provides the ability to consolidate and distribute traffic to multiple security and management tools while supporting Gigamon’s patented...


Thursday, May 18, 2017

Microsoft Builds Cloud Data Centers in Johannesburg and Cape Town

Microsoft announced plans to open cloud data centers in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa by next year.  These will be Microsoft's first data centers on the African continent.

The facilities will be used to deliver the Microsoft Cloud — including Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics 365.

This announcement brings us to 40 cloud regions around the world

https://blogs.microsoft.com/blog/2017/05/18/microsoft-deliver-microsoft-cloud-datacenters-africa


Friday, March 24, 2017

Microsoft's Project Olympus provides an opening for ARM

A key observation from this year's Open Compute Summit is that the hyper-scale cloud vendors are indeed calling the shots in terms of hardware design for their data centres. This extends all the way from the chassis configurations to storage, networking, protocol stacks and now customised silicon.

To recap, Facebook's newly refreshed server line-up now has 7 models, each optimised for different workloads: Type 1 (Web); Type 2 - Flash (database); Type 3 – HDD (database); Type 4 (Hadoop); Type 5 (photos); Type 6 (multi-service); and Type 7 (cold storage). Racks of these servers are populated with a ToR switch followed by sleds with either the compute or storage resources.

In comparison, Microsoft, which was also a keynote presenter at this year's OCP Summit, is taking a slightly different approach with its Project Olympus universal server. Here the idea is also to reduce the cost and complexity of its Azure rollout in hyper-scale date centres around the world, but to do so using a universal server platform design. Project Olympus uses either a 1 RU or 2 RU chassis and various modules for adapting the server for various workloads or electrical inputs. Significantly, it is the first OCP server to support both Intel and ARM-based CPUs. 

Not surprisingly, Intel is looking to continue its role as the mainstay CPU supplier for data centre servers. Project Olympus will use the next generation Intel Xeon processors, code-named Skylake, and with its new FPGA capability in-house, Intel is sure to supply more silicon accelerators for Azure data centres. Jason Waxman, GM of Intel's Data Center Group, showed off a prototype Project Olympus server integrating Arria 10 FPGAs. Meanwhile, in a keynote presentation, Microsoft Distinguished Engineer Leendert van Doorn confirmed that ARM processors are now part of Project Olympus.

Microsoft showed Olympus versions running Windows server on Cavium's ThunderX2 and Qualcomm's 10 nm Centriq 2400, which offers 48 cores. AMD is another CPU partner for Olympus with its ARM-based processor, code-named Naples.  In addition, there are other ARM licensees waiting in the wings with designs aimed at data centres, including MACOM (AppliedMicro's X-Gene 3 processor) and Nephos, a spin-out from MediaTek. For Cavium and Qualcomm, the case for ARM-powered servers comes down to optimised performance for certain workloads, and in OCP Summit presentations, both companies cited web indexing and search as one of the first applications that Microsoft is using to test their processors.

Project Olympus is also putting forward an OCP design aimed at accelerating AI in its next-gen cloud infrastructure. Microsoft, together with NVIDIA and Ingrasys, is proposing a hyper-scale GPU accelerator chassis for AI. The design, code named HGX-1, will package eight of NVIDIA's latest Pascal GPUs connected via NVIDIA’s NVLink technology. The NVLink technology can scale to provide extremely high connectivity between as many as 32 GPUs - conceivably 4 HGX-1 boxes linked as one. A standardised AI chassis would enable Microsoft to rapidly rollout the same technology to all of its Azure data centres worldwide.

In tests published a few months ago, NVIDIA said its earlier DGX-1 server, which uses Pascal-powered Tesla P100 GPUs and an NVLink implementation, were delivering 170x of the performance of standard Xeon E5 CPUs when running Microsoft’s Cognitive Toolkit.

Meanwhile, Intel has introduced the second generation of its Rack Scale Design for OCP. This brings improvements in the management software for integrating OCP systems in a hyper-scale data centre and also adds open APIs to the Snap open source telemetry framework so that other partners can contribute to the management of each rack as an integrated system. This concept of easier data centre management was illustrated in an OCP keynote by Yahoo Japan, which amazingly delivers 62 billion page views per day to its users and remains the most popular website in that nation. The Yahoo Japan presentation focused on an OCP-compliant data centre it operates in the state of Washington, its only overseas data centre. The remote data centre facility is manned by only a skeleton crew that through streamlined OCP designs is able to perform most hardware maintenance tasks, such as replacing a disk drive, memory module or CPU, in less than two minutes.

One further note on Intel’s OCP efforts relates to its 100 Gbit/s CWDM4 silicon photonics modules, which it states are ramping up in shipment volume. These are lower cost 100 Gbit/s optical interfaces that run over up to 2 km for cross data centre connectivity.

On the OCP-compliant storage front not everything is flash, with spinning HDDs still in play. Seagate has recently announced a 12 Tbytes 3.5 HDD engineered to accommodate 550 Tbyte workloads annually. The company claims MTBF (mean time between failure) of 2.5 million hours and the drive is designed to operate 24/7 for five years. These 12 Tbyte enable a single 42 U rack to deploy over 10 Pbytes of storage, quite an amazing density considering how much bandwidth would be required to move this volume of data.


Google did not make a keynote appearance at this year’s OCP Summit, but had its own event underway in nearby San Francisco. The Google Cloud Next event gave the company an even bigger stage to present its vision for cloud services and the infrastructure needed to support it.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Cavium's ARM-based ThunderX2 Powers Microsoft's Project Olympus Server

At the Open Compute Summit in Santa Clara, California, Cavium announced that its ThunderX2 ARMv8-A Data Center processor is being tested by Microsoft for running a variety of workloads on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform.

The ThunderX2 product family is Cavium's second generation 64-bit ARMv8-A server processor SoCs for Data Center, Cloud and High Performance Computing applications. The family integrates fully out-of-order high performance custom cores supporting single and dual socket configurations. ThunderX2 is optimized to drive high computational performance delivering outstanding memory bandwidth and memory capacity.

Cavium said its hardware platform is fully compliant with Microsoft's Project Olympus which is one of the most modular and flexible cloud hardware designs in the data center industry. The platform integrates two ThunderX2 processors in a dual socket configuration. ThunderX2 SoC integrates a large number of fully out-of-order custom ARMv8-A cores with rich IO connectivity for accommodating a variety of peripherals for Azure, delivering excellent throughput and latency for cloud applications. The platform has been designed in collaboration with a leading server ODM supplier for Microsoft.

"Cavium is excited to work with Microsoft on ThunderX2," said Gopal Hegde, VP/GM, Data Center Processor Group at Cavium. "ARM-based servers have come a long way with first generation ThunderX-based server platforms being deployed at multiple data centers, which enabled a critical mass of ecosystem partners for ARM. We see the second generation products helping to drive a tipping point for ARM server deployment across a mainstream set of volume applications. Microsoft's support will help accelerate commercial deployment of ARMv8 server platforms for Data Centers and Cloud."

http://www.cavium.com

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Cisco Offers Integrated Azure Stack in its UCS Platform

Cisco will begin offering Microsoft Azure Stack on its Unified Computing System platforms. The integrated, validated system enables organizations to deliver Microsoft Azure services from their on-premises data center.

“Cisco and Microsoft are coming together to offer a hybrid cloud solution built on the power of UCS and Microsoft Azure,” said Liz Centoni, senior vice president and general manager, Computing Systems Product Group, Cisco. “Through our joint engineering efforts, application developers and IT managers will have a turnkey solution that is easy to deploy, manage and scale.”

“Microsoft and Cisco are proven innovators and trusted technology partners, giving customers the confidence their IT environments can be supported and secure. Microsoft Azure Stack provides services and application programming interfaces (APIs) compatible with the Azure public cloud, allowing developers to do their best work while giving them the agility to deploy their applications to public, private or hosted clouds,” said Mike Neil, corporate vice president, Azure Infrastructure & Management, Microsoft Corporation.

https://newsroom.cisco.com/press-release-content?type=press-release&articleId=1819842

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Microsoft Azure Revenue Increases 93% YoY

Microsoft posted revenue of $24.1 billion GAAP and $26.1 billion non-GAAP for its quarter ending 31-Dec-2016. Net income was $5.2 billion GAAP, and $6.5 billion non-GAAP.

“Our customers are seeing greater value and opportunity as we partner with them through their digital transformation,” said Satya Nadella, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “Accelerating advancements in AI across our platforms and services will provide further opportunity to drive growth in the Microsoft Cloud.”

Some cloud highlights:

  • Office commercial products and cloud services revenue increased 5% (up 7% in constant currency) driven by Office 365 commercial revenue growth of 47% (up 49% in constant currency)
  • Office consumer products and cloud services revenue increased 22% (up 21% in constant currency) and Office 365 consumer subscribers increased to 24.9 million
  • Dynamics products and cloud services revenue increased 7% (up 9% in constant currency) driven by Dynamics 365 revenue growth
  • Revenue in Intelligent Cloud was $6.9 billion and increased 8% (up 10% in constant currency), with the following business highlights:
  • Server products and cloud services revenue increased 12% (up 14% in constant currency) driven by double-digit annuity revenue growth
  • Azure revenue increased 93% (up 95% in constant currency) with Azure compute usage more than doubling year-over-year
  • Enterprise Services revenue decreased 4% (down 2% in constant currency) with declines in custom support agreements offset by growth in Premier Support Services and consulting.


http://www.microsoft.com

Monday, January 16, 2017

Comcast Business Brings 10 Gbps Private Links to Microsoft's Cloud

Comcast Business is now supporting 10 Gbps private connectivity for enterprise customers to the Microsoft Cloud, including Microsoft Azure, Microsoft Office 365, and Microsoft Dynamics 365. The Azure ExpressRoute service is available to its more than one million Comcast Business Ethernet-enabled buildings nationwide.

The private cloud connectivity service provides businesses with predictable and often better performance, security and availability compared to connecting over the open internet, and is backed by a service level agreement (SLA).  Comcast Business is now a member of the Microsoft ExpressRoute partner program.

"As businesses increasingly rely on cloud services to virtualize more of their IT applications, they require connectivity with measurable performance, reliability and security," said Rosemary Cochran, principal at Vertical Systems Group. "The addition of Comcast Business to the Microsoft ExpressRoute partner network offers companies the cloud connectivity they need, backed by the reach and flexibility of Comcast’s expansive Ethernet service footprint."

http://www.comcast.com


Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Microsoft Azure Announces Cloud Bot-as-a-Service

Microsoft announced a new Azure Bot service powered by the Microsoft Bot Framework and serverless compute in Microsoft Azure.

The new Azure Bot Service helps developers to build, connect, deploy and manage intelligent bots that interact naturally via app or website to text/sms, Slack, Facebook Messenger, Skype, Teams, Kik, Office 365 mail and other popular services. Bots run on Azure Functions, a serverless environment. The service scales based on demand and the developer pays only for the resources the bots consume.

Microsoft is providing out-of-the-box templates such as the basic bot, Language Understanding Intelligent Service bot, form bot, and proactive bot. Developers can build bots in C# or Node.js directly in the browser and try it out with the companion Web Chat control.

The Azure Bot Service includes built-in configurable channels to improve your customer interactions and increase your reach to more customers. You can easily build bots that work from your apps or websites and across popular channels such as Slack, Facebook Messenger, Skype, Teams, Web chat, Email, GroupMe, Kik, Telegram and Twilio. Through the Direct Line support you can interact with Microsoft Bot Framework features through a REST API, so you can bring the conversation experience to your app or website, provide control over your branded experience and reach  the many channels Bot Framework supports.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/services/bot-service/

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Microsoft Azure Expands Government Cloud

Microsoft Azure’s Government Cloud has expanded its FedRAMP Provisional Authorization to Operate (P-ATO) with the addition of five new offerings:

  • Azure Service Bus: Provides cloud-enabled communication with enterprise messaging and relayed communication to help connect applications, services, and devices. Service Bus connects applications running on Azure, on-premises systems, or both. 
  • Azure Notification Hubs: A massively scalable mobile push notification engine for quickly sending millions of notifications to iOS, Android, Windows, or Kindle devices, working with APNS (Apple Push Notification Services), GCM (Google Cloud Message), WNS (Windows Push Notification Services), MPNS (Microsoft Push Notification Service), and more.
  • Azure Site Recovery: Orchestrates replication of on-premises physical servers and virtual machines to the Azure cloud or to a secondary datacenter allowing organizations to meet BCDR (Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery) objectives.
  • Azure StorSimple: An integrated storage solution that manages storage tasks between on-premises devices and Microsoft Azure cloud storage. 
  • Azure Backup: A simple and cost-effective backup-as-a-service solution that extends tried-and-trusted tools on-premises with rich and powerful tools in the cloud. 


This brings the total number of Azure Government offerings that meet the FedRAMP High baseline to 18.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/azure-government-cloud-expands-p-ato-scope-with-addition-of-five-new-offerings/

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Fortinet Extends Presence in Azure Government Cloud

Fortinet and Microsoft announced an extension of their partnership to protect the cloud environments of their joint government customers.

Specifically, Fortinet’s Security Fabric solutions for the cloud have been released on the Azure Government Cloud platform to provide comprehensive security, threat intelligence, and the visibility to detect, isolate, and respond to threats in real time for workloads running in the Government Cloud.

This includes virtual security products, such as Fortinet’s enterprise firewall (FortiGate), web application firewall (FortiWeb), mail security (FortiMail), as well as its integrated security management (FortiManager) and analytics (FortiAnalyzer) solutions are now available. Fortinet is also a go-to-market partner with Microsoft’s Azure Security Center.

https://blog.fortinet.com/

Monday, September 26, 2016

Microsoft Azure Accelerates its Networking Capabilities

Microsoft rolled out a number networking capabilities for its Azure cloud service, including advancements to its global server fleet that the company says will improve networking bandwidth performance 33% to 50%.

The improvements include hardware technologies such as NVGRE offload, which harnesses the network processing capabilities of the hardware. Windows and Linux VMs will experience these performance improvements while returning valuable CPU cycles to the application.

Microsoft said its Accelerated Networking provides up to 25 Gbps of throughput and drastically reduces network latency up to 10x.

The new hardware technologies including SR-IOV, which allows VMs to communicate directly to the hardware NIC completely bypassing the Hypervisor’s virtual switch, bringing higher bandwidths and lower latencies, along with reduced jitter and improved Packets Per Second (PPS) performance. With Accelerated Networking, Azure SQL DB In-Memory OLTP transaction performance improved 1.5X.

Additional highlights:

  • Azure Storage users will benefit from substantially increased IOPS performance based on these advancements, combined with newly developed storage specific offloads. Hardware now efficiently performs data transfers up to the line rate of the NIC. The roll out for Storage will also complete in 2016.
  • General availability of Virtual Network Peering (VNet Peering), which connects Virtual Networks (VNets) in the same region, enabling direct full mesh connectivity. VMs in the peered VNets communicate with each other as if they are part of the same VNet, thus benefiting from high bandwidth and low latency. Hub & Spoke topologies are supported with Transit Routing through gateways. The VNet without a gateway still has cross-premises connectivity via the gateway in the peered VNet. VNet Peering works across subscriptions allowing for simplified service management.
  • New UltraPerformance Gateway SKU for ExpressRoute that supports up to 10 Gbps throughput. This is a 5x improvement over the existing ExpressRoute HighPerformance gateway with a 99.95% availability SLA. 
  • Azure now supports Native IPv6 network connectivity for applications and services hosted on Azure Virtual Machines.
  • New Active-Active Virtual Private Network (VPN) Gateway for the High-Performance VPN gateway SKU is recommended for production workloads.
  • New Azure Load Balancer configurations, including general availability of multiple VIPs on internal load balancers and new port reuse options across public and internal load balancers. 
  • Azure will also be previewing multiple IP addresses on a Network Interface Card (NIC) and enabling all NICs on a VM to have a Public IP address on the NIC or through the load balancer. 
  • GA release of Azure DNS, enabling customers to host domains in Azure DNS and manage DNS records using the same credentials, APIs, tools, billing and support as other Azure services.  
  • Additional network monitoring and diagnostics capabilities.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/azure-networking-announcements-for-ignite-2016/

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Microsoft Azure Activates in Germany with T-Systems

Microsoft Azure is now generally available in Germany via new data centers in Magdeburg and Frankfurt that are managed under the control of a data trustee, T-Systems International.

Microsoft said its commercial cloud services in these data centers adhere to German data handling regulations and give customers additional choices of how and where data is processed.

Microsoft now has announced 34 Azure regions, and Azure is available in 30 regions around the world.

http://www.microsoft.com



Microsoft Activates Azure from UK Data Centers


Microsoft announced the availability of its Azure cloud services and Office 365 from multiple data centers in the UK. Microsoft has now announced 34 Azure regions around the world with 28 generally available today – more than any other major cloud provider. https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/microsoft-azure-now-available

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Microsoft Activates Azure from UK Data Centers

Microsoft announced the availability of its Azure cloud services and Office 365 from multiple data centers in the UK.

Microsoft has now announced 34 Azure regions around the world with 28 generally available today – more than any other major cloud provider.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/microsoft-azure-now-available-from-uk-datacenters/

Friday, August 5, 2016

Microsoft Azure Previews Nvidia GPU VMs

Microsoft is getting ready to offer Azure N-Series Virtual Machines, billed as "the fastest GPUs in the public cloud," powered by NVIDIA’s GPUs. The service will enable users to run GPU-accelerated workloads and visualize them while paying on a per-minute of usage basis.

The Azure Our N-Series VMs are split into two categories: NC-Series (compute-focused GPUs) for compute intensive HPC workloads using CUDA or OpenCL and powered by Tesla K80 GPUs; and the NV-Series for visualization of desktop accelerated applications and powered by Tesla M60 GPUs.

Microsoft noted that its service, unlike other providers, will expose the GPUs through discreet device assignment (DDA) which results in close to bare-metal performance.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/azure-n-series-preview-availability/

Monday, August 1, 2016

NBC Olympics selects Microsoft Azure for Cloud Encoding/Hosting

NBC Olympics will be using Microsoft Azure to provide cloud encoding and hosting with video workflows of the upcoming Olympic games in Rio.

NBCOlympics.com plans to post a record 4,500 hours of online conten from the Olympics.

This is the second Games for which NBC Olympics has chosen Microsoft Azure to assist with live and on-demand multiplatform streaming coverage. With the proliferation of connected devices, viewers this year will tune into NBC Olympics’ programming from connected TVs, tablets, smartphones, PCs and more. NBC Olympics is making it easy for viewers to access news, highlights and programming wherever they are via the NBC Sports app available free on Android, iOS, Roku, Amazon, Windows 10 tablets, Xbox, Windows Phone, PC and Mac.

“We always strive to deliver more content in real time to more channels and devices around the world,” said Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Cloud and Enterprise Group at Microsoft. “During the Sochi Olympic Games, NBC Olympics had more than 1 million concurrent live viewers watching a collective average of 600,000 hours of coverage per day. We are planning for even greater viewing numbers for Rio, and are excited to power the experience again using Microsoft Azure.”

“The Rio Olympics have nearly three times as many events per day as the Sochi Games,” said Rick Cordella, senior vice president and general manager, Digital Media, NBC Sports Group. “With the Azure cloud platform, Microsoft is partnering with us to deliver the secure, scalable cloud we depend on to bring the Games to millions of viewers on whichever device they prefer, via end-to-end live streaming entirely in the cloud.”

http://news.microsoft.com/



Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Microsoft Azure to Offer GE Industrial Internet Capabilities

GE and Microsoft announced a partnership that will make GE’s Predix platform for the Industrial Internet available on the Microsoft Azure cloud. The agreement, which marks the first step in a broad strategic collaboration between the two companies, will allow customers to capture intelligence from their industrial assets and take advantage of Microsoft’s enterprise cloud applications.

Specifically, the Azure cloud will provide Predix customers with scalable infrastructure, data sovereignty, hybrid capabilities, and advanced developer and data services. In addition, GE and Microsoft plan to integrate Predix with Azure IoT Suite and Cortana Intelligence Suite along with Microsoft business applications, such as Office 365, Dynamics 365 and Power BI, in order to connect industrial data with business processes and analytics.

“Connecting industrial machines to the internet through the cloud is a huge step toward simplifying business processes and reimagining how work gets done,” said Jeff Immelt, CEO of GE. “GE is helping its customers extract value from the vast quantities of data coming out of those machines and is building an ecosystem of industry-leading partners like Microsoft that will allow the Industrial Internet to thrive on a global scale.”

http://www.microsoft.com
http://www.ge.com

GE to enter Cloud Services Market with Predix Cloud

GE announced plans to enter the cloud services market with its Predix Cloud -- a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) designed specifically for industrial data and analytics.

GE said it is developing Predix Cloud to capture and analyze the unique volume, velocity and variety of machine data within a highly secure, industrial-strength cloud environment. Machine data is expected drive the next phase of growth for the Industrial Internet and enable developers to rapidly create, deploy and manage applications and services for industry.

“Cloud computing has enabled incredible innovation across the consumer world. With Predix Cloud, GE is providing a new level of service and results across the industrial world,” said Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of GE. “A more digital hospital means better, faster healthcare. A more digital manufacturing plant means more products are made faster. A more digital oil company means better asset management and more productivity at every well. We look forward to partnering with our customers to develop customized solutions that will help transform their business.”

Predix Cloud will leverage GE’s deep domain expertise in information technology (IT) and its operational technology (OT).  GE businesses will begin migrating their software and analytics to the Predix Cloud in Q4 2015, and the service will be commercially available to customers and other industrial businesses for managing data and applications on Predix Cloud in 2016.

https://www.gesoftware.com/predix

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Windstream Launches Cloud Connect

Windstream introduced its new Cloud Connect service for making it easier for companies to access the cloud and use it as a foundational element of their IT strategy.

Windstream Cloud Connect benefits new and existing Ethernet, MPLS and Wave (optical) customers, by providing mission critical cloud connectivity through highly secure, performance-optimized virtual and dedicated private access to third party public and private cloud providers. Bandwidth options range from 50 Mbps to 10 Gbps.  Connectivity options include switched Ethernet, MPLS, VPN or point-to-point. Initial clouds supported are AWS and Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute.

“More companies are moving mission-critical applications and business processes to the cloud to take advantage of the flexibility and cost savings that cloud infrastructure can provide, but using the public internet for such applications has a number of downsides: poor performance that affects accessibility, iffy security that puts sensitive data at risk, just to name two,” said David Works, president of Enterprise at Windstream. “The solution to that is dedicated cloud connectivity, but in the past, that has only been available to the largest companies with the deepest pockets. Now, Windstream’s Cloud Connect solution makes it possible for a much larger swath of companies to have much more reliable, faster, safer cloud connectivity.”

http://www.windstream.com

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Riverbed Launches its SteelConnect SD-WAN Solution

Riverbed Technology introduced its SteelConnect SD-WAN (software-defined wide area network) solution for networking in a cloud-centric world.

Riverbed said it is delivering an application-defined approach to networking with SteelConnect, which aims to unify network connectivity and orchestration of application delivery across hybrid WANs, remote LANs and cloud networks such as AWS (available today) and Microsoft Azure (later this year).

SteelConnect includes a fully integrated line of secure WAN gateways, remote LAN switches and Wi-Fi access points, all managed centrally through a cloud console with a graphical user interface.  The goal is to streamline and simplify the process of designing, deploying and managing distributed networks, enabling organizations to modernize their network architecture to realize the full potential of digital transformation.

“The market is going through one of the largest transformations ever, with organizations moving quickly to adopt more digital and cloud services and hybrid networks,” said Jerry M. Kennelly, Riverbed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Unfortunately, legacy approaches to managing distributed networks and routing – which are hardware-bound, hard-coded, inflexible and error-prone – haven’t changed much in 20 years. We believe SteelConnect has the potential to disrupt the multi-billion dollar branch office router market and re-define networking as we know it today. With SteelConnect, we’re delivering an application-defined networking solution that leverages Riverbed’s application DNA and integrates industry-leading visibility, to provide the agility, simplicity and speed enterprises need to manage today’s complex cloud and hybrid architectures.”

“SteelConnect represents a complete rethink of how networks should be built and managed in today’s cloud-centric world,” said Paul O’Farrell, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Riverbed’s SteelConnect, SteelHead and SteelFusion business units. “SteelConnect provides a new experience of networking for both IT and business, where deploying and managing network services is as intuitive as downloading apps onto your smart phone and as instant as spinning up compute and storage resources into a public cloud.”

Key attributes of the Riverbed SteelConnect system:

  • Unified Connectivity & Management Across WAN, Remote LAN & Cloud Networks: SteelConnect provides a software-defined and application-defined connectivity fabric that spans WANs, remote office LANs and cloud infrastructure networks through a line of physical, virtual and cloud-based WAN gateways, as well as remote LAN switches and Wi-Fi access points.
  • Business-aligned Orchestration: Instead of managing networks through configuration of individual appliances, SteelConnect provides policy-based orchestration that is naturally aligned to the language and priorities of business: Applications, Users, Locations, Performance SLAs and Security requirements. An IT network architect can now easily set up global or local policies such as: send all video application traffic over the highest-capacity circuits; send software updates over Internet broadband circuits; or send all business traffic over secure VPNs. Previously network operators needed to enter hundreds or thousands of lines of CLI (command line interface) code to make network and application changes, which is both inefficient and prone to human error.
  • Cloud-based Management Experience: SteelConnect provides an intuitive graphical user interface that supports an agile and intent-based workflow for managing networks. With SteelConnect, operators can design every aspect of a distributed network before deploying any hardware. Zero-touch provisioning then provides instant deployment of physical devices into a network. Central management of global network policies enables agile and efficient updates to support business requirements.
  • Ubiquitous Visibility: SteelConnect provides complete visibility of all users and devices connected to a distributed network, and supports industry-leading NPM and APM capabilities from Riverbed SteelCentralTM natively integrated into the SteelConnect central management console.


http://www.riverbed.com/SteelConnect

Friday, April 1, 2016

Microsoft's Progress with Azure: Moving to Cognitive Services


Microsoft is unique among the big cloud players in that enables enterprises to use the same technologies in their own data center and in the Azure public cloud, said Scott Guthrie, Microsoft's Executive VP of Cloud + Enterprise, speaking at the company's Build 2016 event in San Francisco last week. The Microsoft Cloud is progressing quickly from bulk applications to advanced services, such as IoT, Microservices, Media Streaming, High Performance Compute, Data + Analytics, and Cognitive Services.

Here are some highlight on the progress of Azure:

  • Azure infrastructure encompasses Compute, Storage, Networking, and Security.
  • There are now 30 Azure regions around the world, which is more than AWS and Google Cloud combined.  Applications run closer geographically to many users.
  • In one of its US East regions, Microsoft is currently building a data center campus that is more than a mile in length.
  • The Azure cloud now encompasses more than a million servers.
  • The 3 main reasons customers give for adopting Azure are Choice/Flexibility, Enterprise-ready, and Productivity. 
  • Popular tools supported by Azure include Puppet, Chef, Ansible, WordPress, Drupal, python, Ruby, SQL, hortonworks, mongoDB, Windows Server, Red Hat, Linux, Docker, etc.
  • Microsoft has tens of thousands of support professionals.
  • Azure is the only global public cloud vendor with a license to operate in China.
  • 85% of Fortune 500 use the Microsoft cloud
  • Azure introduced hundreds of new features and services over the past 12 months. Pace of innovation continues to accelerate.
  • There are over 1.4 million SQL databases currently running in Azure.
  • Azure IoT is now processing 2 trillion messages per week.
  • Microsoft has acquired Xamarin for mobile app testing in the cloud. Xamarin is now available at no extra charge to every Visual Studio customer.
  • Azure Fabric Service is now commercially available. It is a prescriptive microservice platform. It can deploy as a runtime on Azure, Azure Stack, VMware, OpenStack and AWS.
  • Azure Container Service is now providing deep integration with Mesos, Swarm, Docker and other container technologies on both Linux and Windows Server.
  • DocumentDB, which is a managed NoSQL database, now scales to 100s of Terabytes.

Scott Guthrie's keynote is online.
https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Build/2016/KEY02

Microsoft Launches Azure Service Fabric

Microsoft announced general availability of Azure Service Fabric -- its microservices application platform for the cloud. The technology has actually been in use on Microsoft's internal infrastructure for the past five years and is currently powering a range of services including Azure SQL Databases, Azure DocumentDB, Intune, Cortana and Skype for Business.

Azure Service Fabric as a service handles application lifecycle management for simplified application scaling and resiliency. Microsoft Visual Studio now provides seamless integration with Service Fabric.  This simplifies coding and deployment from the developer's local machine onto Azure with streamlined provisioning of microservices.

Microsoft also announced previews of Service Fabric for Windows Server, enabling deploying on-premises and other cloud.  The company is also working on Service Fabric for Linux and Java APIs.  Microsoft noted that it plans to open-source the programming frameworks of Service Fabric for Linux later this year.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/

An Introduction to Microservices with Mark Russinovich - Part 1



Part 2

See also