Sunday, March 29, 2015

Intel and Micron Announce 3D NAND Flash Memory

Intel and Micron Technology announced availability of their 3D NAND technology, the world's highest-density flash memory, for use in data center servers, laptops, tablets and mobile devices.


The new 3D NAND technology, which was jointly developed by Intel and Micron, stacks layers of data storage cells vertically to create storage devices with three times higher capacity than competing NAND technologies.  The companies have been able to package up to 48GB of NAND per die — enabling three-fourths of a terabyte to fit in a single fingertip-sized package.  A 256Gb MLC version of 3D NAND currently is sampling with select partners, and a 384Gb TLC design will be sampling later this spring.

"Micron and Intel's collaboration has created an industry-leading solid-state storage technology that offers high density, performance and efficiency and is unmatched by any flash today," said Brian Shirley, vice president of Memory Technology and Solutions at Micron Technology. "This 3D NAND technology has the potential to create fundamental market shifts. The depth of the impact that flash has had to date—from smartphones to flash-optimized supercomputing—is really just scratching the surface of what's possible."

http://newsroom.intel.com/community/intel_newsroom/blog/2015/03/26/micron-and-intel-unveil-new-3d-nand-flash-memory


HP Helion Rack Delivers Pre-tested OpenStack Private Cloud

HP introduced a pre-configured, pre-tuned and pre-tested private cloud solution, based on OpenStack and Cloud Foundry technologies integrated with HP server hardware.

HP Helion Rack enables rapid infrastructure provisioning for enterprise IT departments. The company says HP Helion Rack provides a complete private cloud, with integrated infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) capabilities that support cloud native applications.

“The demand from lines of business and dev/test teams for fast delivery of flexible compute resources is putting many IT departments under intense pressure,” said Owen Rogers, senior analyst, Digital Economics, 451 Research. “While IT departments understand these needs, they don’t always have the time, resources, infrastructure, or skills needed to meet demand. HP Helion Rack can help overcome the cloud and OpenStack software skills barrier that delays many companies private cloud deployments.”

http://www8.hp.com/us/en/hp-news/press-release.html?id=1938833#.VRjFWfm-2-0
http://www8.hp.com/us/en/cloud/helionrack.html?jumpid=ba_h4m8zie7kg

IBM Opens Innovation Centers in France and Texas

IBM announced two Network Innovation Centers - located in Nice, France, and Dallas, Texas - focused primarily on solutions for large enterprise networking systems and telecommunications operators.

The new facilities will let IBM clients test and experience new network technologies from IBM and a variety of alliances, including Brocade, Cisco, Citrix, Juniper Networks, Riverbed, and VMware.  Areas of expertise will include SDN, virtualization and automation technologies.

"Effectively applying cloud technologies to the network could allow a company to reduce its overall network capacity while increasing utilization by dynamically providing resources during the day in Beijing while it’s nighttime in New York, and vice versa," said Pete Lorenzen, general manager, Networking Services, IBM Global Technology Services. "Or a telecom company could better manage periodic, localized spikes in smartphone usage caused by major sporting events or daily urban commutes, dynamically provisioning capacity when and where it's needed.”

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/46405.wss

NTT Com Vending Machine Sells Pre-paid SIMs for Japan

NTT Communications has activated the first two vending machines to sell “Prepaid SIM for Japan” (Prepaid SIM) cards for short-term business travelers and tourists in two locations in Japan.

The first two locations are AQUA CITY ODAIBA and New Kansai International Airport. The carrier is currently offering 7-day and 14-day prepaid mobile data packages with nationwide (Japan) coverage. Wi-Fi coverage at 95,000 hotspots operated by NTT Broadband is also included.

http://service.ocn.ne.jp/mobile/one/visitor/en/index.html

CALIENT Debuts LightConnect Fabric Manager Software

CALIENT Technologies introduced its LightConnect Fabric Manager interconnect orchestration software for its S-Series family of Optical Circuit Switches (OCS) for intra-data center connectivity .

The LightConnect orchestration software creates an optical fabric that allows racks or rows of compute resources to be shared between physical Pods across the data center to accommodate varying workload demands.

To enable the OCS-Powered LightConnect Fabric, CALIENT is announcing the new LightConnect Fabric Manager. Core functions of the Fabric Manager include a topology manager and a cross-connect manager. The topology manager maintains a database of the data center network topology including which layer 2/3 switches and ports are connected to specific optical ports on the LightConnect Fabric.

Similarly, the cross-connect manager maintains a complete database of all optical cross connects in the LightConnect Fabric. Together, these two core functions and their databases allow the Fabric Manager to maintain a complete view of overall topology and optical connectivity in the data center.

The Fabric Manager also maintains a consolidated dashboard summary with operational status of all optical circuit switches including alarms, events, and port utilization. The Fabric Manager is a CentOS-based Linux Application, capable of running on off-the-shelf hardware or any virtual machine

“Operational cost efficiency is a compelling competitive advantage in cloud data centers, which makes any innovation that improves compute economics – the biggest contributor to cost – an essential consideration for data center architects and managers,” said Atiq Raza, Chairman and CEO of CALIENT. “Together, the new LightConnect Fabric and Fabric Manager enable a completely new paradigm in data center design and optimization that will support tremendous improvements in server and storage utilization. It is simply not possible to achieve these results with existing layer 2/3 switching solutions, because the round-trip latency of packet-switching is several microseconds every time the hop is made and that is far too great a penalty.”

http://www.calient.net/2015/03/calient-announces-new-lightconnect-fabric-manager-software-to-virtualize-data-center-pods/

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Sumitomo Electric Develops High-Density, 8-Core Fiber

Sumitomo Electric Industries introduced a multi-core optical fiber featuring 8 cores in the standard 125-µm cladding suitable for optical interconnects.

Sumitomo said its MCF has optical characteristics comparable to the standard single-mode fiber (SSMF). The 125-µm cladding realizes the mechanical reliability equivalent to that of the standard optical fibers, and can utilize various technologies related to the standard optical fibers such as cabling and connecting technologies.

Evaluation tests using 100GE (100GBASE-LR4) transceivers revealed that the MCF cable assures the error-free transmission for 800 Gbps (8 cores × 4 wavelengths × 25 Gbps) signals, which is 8 times higher than the SSMF case. The results of the transmission experiment indicate that the developed MCF cable has the transmission capacity no less than 9.6 Tbps (12 fibers × 8 cores × 4 wavelength × 25 Gb/s). Improvements on transceivers can further enhance the transmission capacity.

http://service.ocn.ne.jp/mobile/one/visitor/en/index.html

Friday, March 27, 2015

Ericsson Announces More 5G Academic Partners

Ericsson announced 5G collaboration partnerships with King's College London and Technische Universität Dresden (TU Dresden).


This builds on partnerships with other leading European research institutes and universities, including the Royal Institute of Technology, Chalmers University of Technology and Lund University in Sweden.

Ericsson is also leading the EU project METIS (Mobile and wireless communications Enablers for Twenty-twenty (2020) Information Society) and been a driving force of 5G PPP (5G Infrastructure Public-Private Partnership), in which vendors, operators and players from industries such as the automotive, utilities and automation sectors are working closely together.

http://www.ericsson.com

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Blueprint: The 5 Fundamentals of Building the New Enterprise WAN

by Mary Stanhope, Vice President of Marketing, Global Capacity

Wide Area Network (WAN) architectures are changing to meet the evolving needs of business. WANs are the critical component of any medium and large enterprise data environment, connecting locations, people, and systems, and transporting data to support day-to-day and critical business operations. As businesses expand geographically across the US, outside of major metropolitan cities into cost-effective rural locations as well as international business centers, their need to connect a larger and distributed workforce with business applications expands in complexity.

While enterprise business is expanding geographically, WAN architectures also need to evolve to support the growing use of the cloud and the sheer volume of real-time, interactive business applications being deployed outside of headquarters’ brick and mortar. This year alone, enterprises predict they will increase their spending on cloud computing by 42% according to IDG’s Computerworld Forecast Study 2015. Furthermore, enterprises also plan to allocate more budget to both collaborative and enterprise applications, which IDC predicts will show fluctuating CAGR rates of 6-8% into 2017.

Evolving the Traditional WAN

Since the late 90’s, enterprises have turned to the Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) architecture solution to interconnect branch offices to each other because it offers any-to-any connectivity for thousands of sites combined with Quality of Service (QoS) for packet prioritization.  Unlike the standard IP table lookups performed by non-MPLS routers, MPLS’ label switching technology enables faster lookups for destinations and routing.   Interconnecting thousands of sites, such as branch offices and data centers, and handling any-to-any traffic patterns is simplified by MPLS’ routed architecture and Layer-3 IP Virtual Private Networks (VPNs). While, MPLS remains a popular WAN connectivity option, it is no longer the total solution. The evolution of the enterprise has created a need for alternative and complementary access services.

Single provider, single technology WAN architectures no longer cost-effectively satisfy the complex needs of today’s medium and large enterprises. Different technologies and services may work better in connecting different business locations. When interconnecting data centers, the most common alternative to MPLS is Carrier Ethernet.

The advantage to Carrier Ethernet is that the bandwidth is lower cost and the services are easy to set up.  Connectivity to cloud computing is better served by Carrier Ethernet rather than MPLS due to its higher bandwidth connectivity to and between datacenters. In contrast, Carrier Ethernet services do not scale to the same magnitude of sites as MPLS. So, it is best used for a subset of locations requiring high-bandwidth such as data centers and headquarters.

MPLS services are most available in metropolitan areas, but not everywhere. When it comes to remote offices that only require Internet connectivity to be successful, Internet access or Broadband are best used for lower cost and ubiquitous coverage. Sometimes, these are business- grade Service Level Agreement (SLA) Internet services; alternatively they are "best effort" offerings.

Today, there is no single WAN technology that effectively meets every single requirement across enterprise applications and locations.

The Hybrid WAN

Today’s business WAN requires designing the right connectivity for the right application at the right location. For many enterprises, this means deploying multi-service WAN switches at the edge of the network to connect to multiple services such as Internet, Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), and storage over the same aggregated connection. For others, it involves implementing multi-network, multi-geography WANs built from a hybrid of technologies, including Dedicated Internet Access (DIA) to remote offices with lower bandwidth needs, Carrier Ethernet between headquarters and data centers, and a combination of MPLS and Ethernet connectivity based on availability and pricing between locations.  The new WAN encompasses multiple technologies and locations in order to support multiple bandwidths and performance levels.

Appropriately sizing connectivity to the location, users and applications being used at each enterprise office is imperative to successful WAN performance. With the fractured nature of today’s telecommunication access market, however, this is often easier said than done.

The Five Fundamentals of Building the New WAN 

The need for MPLS, Carrier Ethernet, and Internet access across disparate locations and geographies creates a new complexity for IT and network teams to design WANs. Where buying managed services from a local exchange providers may have been a one-stop solution for an MPLS WAN, the evolving architecture requires a modern approach and tool set to design, order, and manage evolving WAN connectivity.

So, how does any one enterprise effectively design, manage, and maintain the new WAN, and how can this process be simplified? One solution is to leverage a network marketplace for visibility into service options, pricing, and availability. A marketplace of networks offers enterprises connectivity as a service through aggregated network bandwidth combined with an online self-service application to design, order, and deliver services. A network marketplace simplifies the complexity of procuring the new WAN with five fundamental attributes:

1. Visibility – To make informed decisions, Network designers need to have increased visibility into the network availability, technology, and pricing connecting their business locations. Network-building tools need to provide transparency into the fractured nature of today’s telecommunication access market to optimize the cost and performance of connectivity.

2. “What-if” Modeling - “What-if” modeling scenarios greatly simplify designing optimal, purpose-built WANs. With “what-if” modeling capabilities, anyone can enter an address and filter connectivity options based on specific service criteria, including data center locations, service technologies, latency, contract term, and price point to design the optimal WAN that meets specific business objectives.

3. Real-Time Pricing – Enterprises are dynamic and growing, with new locations being added through expansion, mergers, and acquisitions. Access to real-time, automated pricing of network connectivity allows IT teams to make timely decisions on connecting new locations and expanding existing ones.  

4. Ease of Ordering – We are all used to the convenience of online ordering. After spending the time to design and price the optimal WAN, enterprise IT and network teams need to be able to transact on their design without delay. A digital marketplace allows for immediate transactions that deliver the network with a single master service agreement, supporting SLAs, and invoice, as opposed to proposals, orders and provisioning from multiple network service providers.

5. Simplify – Because WANs are growing in complexity and requirements, tools need to be made available that leverage data and automation to simplify the experience for the IT professional. A network marketplace can be used not only to simplify connectivity in today’s fractured market, but also for added control, efficiency, and optimized performance and cost.

Leveraging a digital network marketplace, enterprises with thousands of sites can easily design their WAN without laborious RFP processes and accurately choose and price different solutions for quality, performance, and location. With added visibility into the marketplace, enterprises realize substantial cost savings by connecting the right applications to the right locations with the right services for optimal network performance and price. The evolving WAN demands a new method of network design, build, and management, delivered exclusively, cost-effectively, and simply by the digital network marketplace.

About the Author

Mary Stanhope is Vice President of Marketing for Global Capacity.  Ms. Stanhope is responsible for the strategic positioning and go to market of Global Capacity’s products and services. She has over 23 years in the communications industry, holding business development and product marketing roles of increasing responsibility with companies such as Sidera Networks, RCN, Teleport Communications, Atos Origin and SchlumbergerSema.  From the introduction of SMS and prepaid wireless to the development of online communities and launch of Ethernet and cloud services, Ms. Stanhope has been a pioneer for architecting change in how businesses and people communicate as recognized by Fierce Telecom 2013 Top 10 Women in Wireline.  She is an active participant in the MEF and Light Reading Ethernet Executive Council.  Ms. Stanhope holds a B.A. degree from Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY.




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Huawei Unveils ONOS-based IP + Optical and Transport

Huawei demonstrated an IP + optical and Transport Software-Defined Networking (TSDN) implementation the based on the Open Network Operating System (ONOS).

The application shown at this week's #OFC2015 show in Los Angeles comprised a number of features including a graphical multi-layer network view of the SDN application system, automatic resource discovery, automatic IP link setup, automatic service provisioning and multi-layer network protection. Huawei also presented bandwidth-on-demand (BoD), transport network virtualization and innovative VTS2.0 applications, which provide network level services that can be customized by tenants, as well as cloud-like resilience.

The demo used the Huawei ONOS-based Smart Network Controller (SNC) and NetMatrix service synergy platform to remotely control a real network constructed with Huawei NE series routers and Huawei OptiX OSN series smart optical devices located in Dallas, Texas.

http://www.huawei.com

PMC Unveils OTN-based Fronthaul for C-RAN Architecture

PMC-Sierra unveiled an OTN-based solution for fronthaul networking in Centralized Baseband RAN (C-RAN) architectures used for LTE and LTE-Advanced systems.

The OTN solution meets the 3GPP specifications for end-to-end latency and jitter while multiplexing multiple CPRI signals onto a single 10G wavelength. PMC said this OTN fronthaul architecture substantially reduces fiber consumption in the access network. The company is offering a reference design based on its existing HyPHY 20Gflex and HyPHY 10Gflex devices.

“Solving the mobile fronthaul networking challenge is the key to enabling C-RAN,” said Dr. Chih-Lin I, chief scientist of wireless technologies, China Mobile Research Institute, CMCC. “CMCC is looking for more cost-effective, scalable and carrier-grade fronthaul solutions. As the standard protocol for carrier-grade transport, OTN is a very compelling option and we’re excited to see ecosystem partners like PMC innovating to deliver solutions that address the networking needs of mobile fronthaul.”


“Distributed remote radios in a C-RAN architecture has tremendous potential to address expanding mobile capacity and coverage needs, but it creates a fronthaul networking problem that PMC has now solved,” said Babak Samimi, vice president of marketing for PMC’s Communications Business Unit. “PMC’s new OTN-based mobile fronthaul solution not only meets operator needs, it also allows carriers to build on their end-to-end OTN strategy and benefit from the operational efficiency and management simplicity that comes with a converged network.”

http://www.pmcs.com/fronthaul

Google Introduces Cloud Launcher

Google introduced Cloud Launcher -- a way for developers to launch more than 120 popular open source packages configured by Bitnami or Google Click-to-Deploy for Google Cloud Platform.

Cloud Launcher includes developer tools and stacks such as Apache Solr, Django, Gitlab, Jenkins, LAMP, Node.js, Ruby on Rails, and Tomcat. It also includes popular databases like MongoDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL and popular applications like Wordpress, Drupal, JasperReports, Joomla and SugarCRM.

Google said it is optimizing many of these packages specifically for Google Cloud Platform.

http://googlecloudplatform.blogspot.com/2015/03/deploy-popular-software-packages-using-Cloud-Launcher.html

Latest Puppet Labs Release Can Provision Docker, AWS, Bare Metal

The latest software update from Puppet Labs (Enterprise 3.8) brings provisioning capabilities for Docker containers, AWS infrastructure and bare metal.

Puppet Node Manager, released late last year, initially included a rules-based method to organize servers based on key characteristics, such as application, role, data center, operating environment, and geographic location. With Puppet Enterprise 3.8, Puppet Node Manager includes capabilities for automating the provisioning of infrastructure, from containers to bare metal.

“Businesses are adopting DevOps tools and practices because they are under tremendous pressure to deliver new and reliable services faster, across an ever-expanding set of infrastructure technologies, “ said Nigel Kersten, CIO of Puppet Labs. “By adding support for Docker, AWS and bare metal, Puppet Enterprise 3.8 makes it faster and easier to provision and manage nearly any infrastructure technology. Now, IT teams can focus less time on managing change, and more time driving change throughout their organizations.”

https://puppetlabs.com/

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

OIF Shows 56G Electrical Interfaces & CFP2-ACO

At this week's OFC exhibition in Los Angeles, the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) is showcasing the first electrical interfaces running at 56 Gbps, effectively doubling the current 28G electical interface specification.  The OIF has five CEI-56G specifications are under development, such as platform backplanes and links between a chip and an optical engine on a line card.

To address power consumption issues, the OIF is pursuing two parallel tracks: using 56 Gigabit non-return-to-zero (NRZ) signalling and 4-level pulse amplitude modulation (PAM-4) which encodes two bits per symbol such that a 28 Gbaud signalling rate can be used. The 56 Gig NRZ uses simpler signalling but must deal with the higher associated loss, while PAM-4 does not suffer the same loss as it is similar to existing CEI-28 channels used today but requires a more complex design.

More online...

http://www.oiforum.com/oif-shows-56g-electrical-interfaces-cfp2-aco/

CommScope Demos WideBand Multimode Fiber for 100G Short WDM

CommScope demonstrated 100 Gbps Ethernet applications using short wavelength division multiplexing (SWDM) over wide band multimode fiber (WBMMF). The technology is targeted at high bandwidth applications in high-performance data centers.  The demonstration at this week's OFC in Los Angeles was held in partnership with Finisar, which supplied the 100G transceivers for use with the CommScope LazrSPEED 550 WideBand multimode fiber.

“We have been working with our partners on advancing the capabilities of high-speed transmission over multimode fiber and we believe this demonstration will show how far we have come in providing another cost-effective solution to support future data center needs,” said Kevin St. Cyr, senior vice president of Enterprise Solutions, CommScope. “The LazrSPEED WideBand multimode fiber will enable migration from 10 to 40 to even 100 Gigabit speeds over a single fiber pair, as well as provide customers legacy support for existing applications.”

http://www.commscope.com/

Ciena Joins NSF's GENI Project

Ciena has joined the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Global Environment for Network Innovations (GENI) project that supports "at scale" research in networking, distributed systems, cloud services, security, and novel applications.

GENI provides access to hundreds of widely distributed resources, including virtual machines and “bare-machines.”  The company said that by connecting GENI’s multi-site cloud computing resources with its testbed, its researchers’ gain greater ability to collaborate with external researchers via a multi-directional interconnected system to test new applications on a large scale network and give assurance of their real-world viability. For example, this can be used to test new network function virtualization (NFV) applications like virtual WAN optimization or network security.

“Ciena’s collaboration with the National Science Foundation’s GENI project will help drive continued exploration of advanced network enabled applications and support the creation of more programmable, agile networks that are essential in today’s web-scale world,” stated Rod Wilson, Senior Director of External Research, Ciena.

http://www.ciena.com/about/newsroom/press-releases/Ciena-Joins-National-Science-Foundations-GENI-Project.html

http://www.geni.net/

ZTE Posts 2014 Profit of RMB 2.63 Billion

ZTE reported a net profit of RMB 2.63 billion (US$423.5 million) in 2014. Basic earnings per share climbed to RMB 0.77, while revenue rose 8.3% to RMB 81.47 billion.

ZTE posted revenue of RMB 40.89 billion from international operations, accounting for 50.2% of revenue. Operations in China contributed revenue of RMB 40.58 billion.

http://www.zte.com.cn

Harmonic Debuts Integrated Receiver-Decoder With HEVC

Harmonic introduced the first single-rack, multiformat, integrated receiver-decoder (IRD), transcoder and MPEG stream processor to support the HEVC standard, enabling video content and service providers to decode HEVC compressed streams up to 1080p60 resolution.

The 1-RU chassis ProView 7100 IRD platform offers broadcast-quality SD/HD MPEG-2, MPEG-4 AVC and HEVC decoding, in addition to MPEG-2 and AVC transcoding.  It supports AVC HD and HEVC 4:2:2 10-bit decoding up to 1080p60. The HEVC decoding capabilities are available to new and existing ProView 7100 customers via a simple software update and license key.

"The ability to decode HEVC compressed streams is becoming important for video content and service providers as they prepare to deliver high-quality, bandwidth-intensive services like Ultra HD and 4K," said Bart Spriester, senior vice president, video products, Harmonic. "As the world's first IRD platform capable of decoding HEVC content, the ProView 7100 continues to prove that it's the best solution for content reception applications, providing TV operators with the flexibility, scalability, video compression efficiency and low total-cost-of-ownership they need to cost-effectively deliver video offerings with amazing quality now and in the future."

http://www.harmonicinc.com/

Luxtera Debuts 100G QSFP28 Module and Silicon Photonics Chipset

At this week's #OFC2015 in Los Angeles, Luxtera confirmed commercial availability of its 100G-PSM4 compliant chipset and QSFP optical module. The company said its low cost single mode products  make it well positioned for an industry-shift from copper and legacy multimode fiber to single mode fiber at volume scale.

LUX42604 Key Features

  • 100Gb optical transceiver
  • QSFP28 compliant module form-factor
  • Four 4 x 26 Gbps independently operating channels, full-duplex operation
  • Multirate: 1 – 25.78 Gbps (per channel)
  • FEC not required for error free operation but also supports Clause 74 and 91 FEC
  • 1310nm PSM4 MSA compliant – as described by www.psm4.org.
  • Proven Light Source and Packaging Technology
  • Extended Reach Up to 2000 Meters
  • Less than 3.5W worst case power

“In 2015, hyperscale data centers are undergoing a tectonic shift as the industry moves to 100Gb, and single mode photonics replace copper to become the mainstream interconnect. Luxtera is at the forefront of this transition with the only optical transceiver technology that can deliver 100Gb speeds with up to 2km of reach at the aggressive cost points needed for these high volume deployments. Today we are introducing our first Hybrid Silicon Photonics architecture products including the industry’s first 1310nm 100G-PSM4 MSA compliant QSFP28+ pluggable module and a fully integrated SiP PSM4 chipset,” said Greg Young, President and CEO of Luxtera.  “Luxtera pioneered the field of Silicon Photonics starting in 2001 and has been in continuous production since the original introduction of 40Gb SiP AOCs in 2008. With these new products we are addressing connectivity needs of hyperscale/cloud and enterprise datacenters with standard compliant products. We look forward to moving further into these core markets by delivering additional high performance single mode fiber solutions."

http://www.luxtera.com

See also