Thursday, May 7, 2015

Microsoft Builds Azure's Networking Capabilities

Microsoft announced several new Azure networking services and features, including expanded ExpressRoute connectivity to other Microsoft Cloud services like Office 365 and Skype for Business Enterprise Voice.

Some of the new features include:

  • Standard VPN gateway enabling Site-to-Site (S2S) connectivity to a Virtual Network that also has a gateway connected to an ExpressRoute circuit.
  • Virtual Network Enhancements, including user defined routes and IP forwarding, reserved IP-mobility, multiple VIPs per cloud service, and public fully qualified domain names (FQDN) resolution for VM instances in a cloud service.
  • New Network Virtual Appliance partners, including A10, Cisco, F5, Fortinet and NGINX. Appliance types include firewalls, Intrusion Prevention Systems, WAN optimization, and Application Delivery Controllers (ADC/Load Balancing).
  • Azure DNS, a new service to host DNS domains and provides name resolution using Microsoft’s global infrastructure.

Microsoft's Azure Service Fabric is a microservice application platform that allows developers to decompose their work into logical subsystems that are loosely coupled and can be updated independently.

In this video, Mark Russinovich, Chief Technology Office for Microsoft Azure,  talks about how Azure Service Fabric is becoming a key differentiator for the company's cloud initiatives.

Recorded at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara, California.

#ONS2015 - Microsoft Azure Puts SDN at Center of its Hyperscale Cloud

To handle its hyperscale growth, Microsoft Azure must integrate the latest compute and storage technologies into a truly software-defined infrastructure, said Mark Russinovich, Chief Technology Officer of Microsoft Azure in a keynote presentation at the Open Networking Summit in Santa Clara, California. The talk covered how Microsoft is building its hyperscale SDN, including its own scalable controllers and hardware-accelerated hosts.  Microsoft...

More on core technologies for enabling hyperscale clouds

See Brad Booth on Hierarchical SDN, the move toward on-board optics, and Flexible Ethernet for data center operations.

Google Launches Bigtable: Same NoSQL Database that powers Google Search, Gmail and Analytics

Google officially launched Cloud Bigtable - a fully managed, high-performance, extremely scalable NoSQL database service that uses the same code and infrastructure that powers Google Search, Gmail and Analytics and nearly all of Google's largest applications.

Google Cloud BigTable is accessible through the industry-standard, open-source Apache HBase API, which makes it natively integrated with much of the existing big data and Hadoop ecosystem.

Google Cloud Bigtable is now available as a beta release in multiple locations worldwide. Google also announced a number of service partners to help enterprises, including SunGard, Pythian, CCRI and Telit Wireless Solutions.

OIF Launches New Integrated Photonics Projects

The Optical Internetworking has started work on technical specifications for high bandwidth optical modulators and receivers for coherent applications.

The utilized coherent ASIC Baud Rate is no longer sufficient information to define the frequency response requirements for coherent electro-optical (EO) components now that the industry has embraced the use of preconditioning. The High Bandwidth Polarization Multiplexed Quadrature Optical Modulator project enables coherent electro-optical modulation of a wider optical spectrum per optical carrier defined in terms of frequency response. The Intradyne Coherent Receiver project proposes an improved RF high frequency response that e
nables coherent electro-optic demodulation of a wider optical spectrum peroptical carrier.

OIF have also approved implementation agreements for 100G applications.
The IA for Integrated Dual Polarization Micro-Intradyne Coherent Receivers targets coherent 100G PM-QPSK applications with nominal symbol rates up to 32 GBaud in a CFP2 form factor.  This IA also defines a low speed electrical interface incorporating an SPI bus for control of the TIAs in the coherent receiver.

The IA for Generation 2.0 100G Long-Haul DWDM Transmission Module-Electromechanical applies to optical line interface applications. The IA reduces the size and power consumption requirements by defining a 4x5 module that can be used for 100G long-haul DWDM transmission applications.

The OIF noted that work is continuing on the FlexEthernet and Common Electrical Interface (CEI) projects begun in 2014.

“Our members are working at full capacity right now,” said Karl Gass, of Qorvo and the OIF Physical and Link Layer Working Group vice chair, Optical. “With as many as 19 documents going to ballot this quarter alone we are completing technical work at an extremely fast pace. These two new electro-optical component projects will fill a gap in the line side component space, providing systems engineers more tools to increase channel capacity beyond 100Gb/s.”

Cisco to Acquire Tropo for Phone/SMS APIs

Cisco agreed to acquire Tropo, a start-up offering real-time communications APIs. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Cisco and Tropo will provide a collaboration platform-as-a-service, which allows customers and developers to create and sell new communications services with minimal development effort. Tropo makes it simple to build phone and SMS applications. The company says its APIs have attracted a network of 200K+ developers.

The Tropo team will join Cisco's Collaboration Technology Group under the leadership of Rowan Trollope, SVP and general manager.

Equinix May Bid for Telecity

Equinix confirmed that it is in preliminary discussions with the Board of TelecityGroup regarding a possible cash and share offer for the company.

Equinix said that in the United Kingdom, the acquisition of TelecityGroup would add capacity in Central London and Docklands that would complement the focus of Equinix’s current operations in Slough. Additionally, the acquisition would add capacity in several of Equinix’s current locations throughout Europe, and extend Equinix’s footprint into new locations with identified cloud and interconnection needs including Dublin, Helsinki, Istanbul, Milan, Stockholm and Warsaw.

Telecity confirmed that it continues to progress the proposed merger agreement with Interxion announced earlier this year.

In February 2015, TelecityGroup plc and Interxion, both leading operators of data centers across Europe, announced plans for a merger. 

Under the deal, Interxion shareholders would receive 2.3386 new TelecityGroup shares per Interxion share. As a result, Interxion shareholders would own approximately 45%, and TelecityGroup shareholders approximately 55%, of the combined group. The primary listing for the combined group would be in London with a New York Stock Exchange listing for TelecityGroup’s existing ADR programme.

TelecityGroup, headquartered in the United Kingdom, operates 39 data centers in key European cities. It has annual turnover of £349 million.

Interxion, which is based in Amsterdam, operates 39 data centres across 11 countries.  It has annual turnover of £274 million.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

ONOS-based Peering Router Enters Pacific Deployment

An ONOS-based software-defined peering router has been deployed on a trans-Pacific network by a coalition consisting of the Open Networking Operating System (ONOS) Project, the Open Networking Foundation (ONF), Corsa Technology (Corsa), ESnet, AARNet and CSIRO.

The router located at AARNet/CSIRO in Australia exchanges routes with the Vandervecken software-defined networking (SDN) controller stack at ESnet in California and uses high performance data planes comprised of Corsa switches in both locations.

The deployed SDN-based peering router, developed by ONF and the ONOS Project, is a free, open source application built on ONOS and is currently available for download from the ONOS Project website. It enables SDN networks to seamlessly interact with software-defined and traditional (non-SDN) networks by peering with one another to advertise, collect and exchange routes using eBGP. The peering application receives route advertisements from peers, resolves next hops and then programs the OpenFlow™ switch in the SDN data plane through ONOS.

The ONOS-based peering router is deployed across two sites in Sydney, Australia. The Corsa switch is located in an AARNet data center in Haymarket and the ONOS application in a CSIRO research laboratory in Marsfield, approximately 15km away. It controls the high throughput Corsa OpenFlow DP6410 data plane and successfully peers across a trans-Pacific Layer 2 VLAN with a complementary SDN-based router, Vandervecken, at ESnet in Berkeley, Calif. (see figure 2).

The ESnet site also uses a Corsa DP6420 data plane, programmed by the Vandervecken SDN router software developed by Google and based on Routeflow project1 and Quagga on a Ryu controller.

"Having successfully exchanged 15,000 routes in this deployment reflecting true Internet scale and 100,000 routes in lab tests, it was programming the data plane with large forwarding tables that presented the real technical challenge here," said Bill Snow, vice president of Engineering at ON.Lab.

"This operation has been up and running for over a month now, so it is no longer a question of whether SDN control planes can be deployed to support worldwide infrastructure. With ONOS' support for high availability, scale and performance and with Corsa's high performance, programmable data plane, the promise of SDN is turning into reality. An SDN control plane that readily interoperates with existing infrastructure, whether traditional or software-defined is the key to providing a migration path from legacy systems as well as a roadmap to pure SDN infrastructure."

"As the Department of Energy's high-bandwidth network for science, it's exciting to be a partner in this project that is helping to transform networking," said ESnet CTO Inder Monga. "Operational deployment of SDN-IP stacks will enable existing networks to seamlessly integrate with innovative SDN network deployments. Since we are funded by the U.S. government, it's important this software is free and open source so that our investment in the project can be further leveraged by the rest of the networking community."

Cisco Joins Intel Network Builders Ecosystem

Renu Navale discusses the Intel Network Builders program, which aims to accelerate the market for network functions virtualization (NFV) and help carriers to transform their infrastructure.

Over 150 companies now participate in this program. Cisco is the latest to join.

See video:

Cyan Expands Its Blue Orbit SDN and NFV Ecosystem

Cyan has added a number of new partners to Blue Orbit, its ecosystem of partners focused on delivering applications and infrastructure platforms for multi-vendor SDN and NFV deployments.

Blue Orbit’s new members are:

ADI Engineering – an ODM that delivers next-generation solutions for emerging mega-trends including SDN, NFV, and IoT.  ADI’s NFV-enabled network edge and CPE devices, including its RCC-VE and RCC-DFF platforms, are pre-integrated and validated with Cyan’s Blue Planet platform, and are available for trials and full-scale deployments.
Aria Networks – Aria Networks uses artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver capacity planning, optimization and orchestration that enable even the most complex networks to virtualize
Brocade –  Brocade's suite of SDN and NFV solutions include the Brocade Vyatta vRouter, Vistapointe virtual Network Visibility and Analytics, Brocade Vyatta Controller and the newly acquired SteelApp virtual ADC and Connectem Virtual Core for Mobile offering.
GENBAND – offering a differentiated Virtual Network Functions (VNF) portfolio includes fully virtualized, high-performance communications signaling, control and media management solutions including Session Border Controllers, Applications Servers, WebRTC Gateway, Wireless Access Gateways, Intelligent Messaging and Session Routing solutions. An intelligent VNF Management framework and open APIs enable seamless interworking with other NFV and cloud infrastructure components.
Intel – unified ingredients and platform technologies that aim to deliver business value quickly for enterprise IT, help telco service providers reduce expenses to derive incremental revenue, and optimize the cost of scalable service delivery for private/public cloud environments.
VMware – VMware vCloud for NFV is an integrated network functions virtualization platform that enables communication service providers to deploy virtual network functions on vCloud APIs today, and deploy them into production on OpenStack in the future.
Wind River - software for the Internet of Things, with its technology found in nearly 2 billion devices.

Announced Blue Orbit members and the area of completed or planned integration include:
VNFs: Brocade, Certes, Fortinet, GENBAND, Metaswitch Networks, PowerDNS
Physical Network Elements:  Accedian, RAD, Overture, Omnitron Systems, Telco Systems
Virtual Infrastructure: ADI Engineering, Aria Networks, Arista, Boundary, Canonical, Intel, Mellanox, Pica8, Ryu, VMware, Wind River

“The ability to run virtual functions on high performance servers and meet the requirements of production networks is extremely important in making NFV a mainstream technology,” said Joe Cumello, chief marketing officer, Cyan. “We are pleased to welcome these new members to the Blue Orbit Ecosystem. Together, we are working to further validate that SDN and NFV can meet the application, scale, and performance requirements that service providers demand.”

RAD’s joining of Blue Orbit follows the recent completion by Cyan of end-to-end Ethernet services provisioning and "one-click OAM" as well as alarms and topology support for the RAD ETX-2. This integration enables network operators to have visibility and management of RAD platforms through Cyan’s Blue Planet SDN Platform.

Zayo Enables Transatlantic Self-Service Provisioning

Zayo is enabling transatlantic service capabilities on its Tranzact provisioning portal.

Zayo said this new transatlantic capability allows its customers to seamlessly quote to and from locations across Zayo’s entire global network, for services including aggregated IP, E-line and ELAN Ethernet and 1-10G wavelength services. Customers will have the freedom to explore by building type, data center or Cloud provider at over 16,000 on-net locations.

“As we continue to expand our European footprint, it is vital that we are able to deliver bandwidth wherever and whenever customers require it,” said David Howson, president of Zayo international. “A big priority for us is to connect customers across the Atlantic, enabling them access into key locations in the US and Europe. That’s why Tranzact is such a valuable tool – it integrates bandwidth into an ‘online shopping’ experience, making purchasing bandwidth easy to navigate and understand."

Alcatel-Lucent Posts Q1 Financials, Strength in Next Gen

Alcatel-Lucent's Q1 2015 group revenues, excluding Managed Services and at constant perimeter, increased 12% year-on year, with strong growth coming from next-generation products, which are up 25%. At constant exchange rates, group revenues, excluding Managed Services and at constant perimeter, are down 2% while next-generation revenues are up 9%. Gross margin expanded 230 bps year-over-year to 34.6%.

“Our first quarter 2015 results reflect not only strong growth in our next-generation products, but also the diligent efforts we have made to turn Alcatel-Lucent around and build a more resilient organization. Evidence of our progress is shown through the continued improvement in margins and cash flow. Execution of the Shift Plan is and will continue to be our top priority, underlined by our commitment to reach our positive free cash flow target in 2015. These results help pave the way for successful execution of our goals as we prepare for our combination with Nokia,” stated Michel Combes, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent.

Some highlights:

  • Core Networking segment revenues were Euro 1,450 million in Q1 2015, up 7% year-over-year at actual rates and down 3% at constant rates. Adjusted operating income totalled Euro 41 million, or 2.8% of segment revenues in Q1 2015, compared to Euro 96 million or 7.1% of revenues in Q1 2014. This decline was mainly attributable to reinvestments made to promote future growth as well as lower contribution from IP Routing, which was impacted by a temporary softer spending environment in North America and Japan, and variations in product mix.
  • IP Routing revenues were Euro 583 million in Q1 2015, an increase of 6% at actual rates and a decrease of 6% at constant rates when compared to Q1 2014, which was a very strong seasonally-adjusted Q1 compared to the previous Q4 2013.
  • The high-end 7950 XRS IP Core router saw strong year-over-year revenue growth and registered 3 new wins in Q1, including a US cable company, for a total of 39 wins to date.
  • There was significant interest and activity in routing virtualization continued with 8 Virtualized Service Router (VSR) wins to date, including 3 new wins in the quarter, and 55 trials underway.
  • Nuage Networks added 4 new customers in the quarter, bringing the total to 20 customers. Recent wins include CTCC, the Cloud Computing Branch of China Telecom, which selected Nuage’s SDN technology to help deliver secure, scalable, and self-serve public cloud services in China's fast-growing cloud computing market.
  • IP Transport revenues were Euro 492 million in Q1 2015, up 8% at actual rates and 2% at constant rates, compared to the year-ago quarter. Terrestrial optics revenues grew at a mid-single-digit pace year-over-year at constant rates, driven by WDM and with particular strength in the EMEA and CALA regions. The submarine business registered a double-digit year-over-year revenue increase, resuming revenue growth as the pipeline continues to build up.
  • The 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) platform represented 60% of terrestrial optical product revenues in the quarter, up 16 percentage points year-on-year, and was selected by Chuan Wei for Cambodia’s first ultra-broadband 100G fiber-optic data network.
  • In Q1 2015, our 100G shipments represented 47% of total WDM line cards shipments compared to 31% in Q1 2014, also up 16 percentage points year-on-year.
  • Access segment revenues were Euro 1,782 million in Q1 2015, an increase of 13% year-over-year at actual rates and a decrease of 2% at constant rates.
  • Wireless Access revenues were Euro 1,184 million, a year-on-year increase of 19% at actual rates and flat at constant rates, as growth from LTE rollouts in China was offset by lower spending in other regions, particularly North America.
  • Fixed Access revenues were Euro 506 million in Q1 2015, an increase of 10% compared to the year-ago quarter at actual rates and a decrease of 1% at constant rates. Competition for broadband access drove good performance in EMEA, APAC outside China and CALA, compensating for the impact of spending pause in North America.

Sonus Aligns NFV Portfolio with ALU CloudBand

Sonus Networks is bringing its Diameter Signaling Controller Software edition (DSC SWe) and its Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) IQ into the Alcatel-Lucent CloudBand Ecosystem. The solutions will join the currently deployed Sonus Session Border Controller Software edition (SBC SWe) introduced into the program in 2014.

“Sonus offers a full portfolio of virtualized solutions dedicated to bringing intelligence and security to service provider’s real-time communications,” said Tony Scarfo, executive vice president, Product Management and Corporate Development. “Sonus’ participation in the Alcatel-Lucent CloudBand™ Ecosystem will not only bolster our traction in the NFV space, but also accelerate the critical need for NFV across the industry.”

Cubic Telecom Secures EUR 18 Million for M2M Connectivity

Cubic Telecom, a start-up based in Dublin, Ireland, has secured €18 million in venture funding for its global Machine to Machine (M2M) connectivity platform.

Cubic Telecom is focused on enabling seamless global connectivity solutions for enterprise customers across automotive, computer OEM and retail sectors. Cubic’s applications and technologies are embedded at the manufacturing stage, enabling enterprise customers to offer always-on connectivity anywhere in the world. Cubic is actively working with some of the world’s leading Fortune 100 tablet and notebook manufacturers including HP and Lenovo, and Australia’s number one retailer Woolworths. More recently Cubic expanded its business to partner with some of the most innovative M2M and automotive companies in the world.

The funding comes in the form of a co-investment from Audi Electronics Venture GmbH (AEV), a subsidiary of AUDI AG focused on investing in innovative technologies, and Qualcomm Incorporated (QCOM), a world leader in 3G, 4G and next-generation wireless technologies.

Existing investors include Sierra Wireless, ACT Venture Capital, TPS Investment Limited and Enterprise Ireland. This is Qualcomm’s fourth investment in Cubic, highlighting the strength of the partnership between the two organizations.

Barry Napier, CEO, Cubic Telecom said, “We appreciate the investment from Audi and Qualcomm as we continue to expand our market presence. The automotive industry is changing faster than ever, and connectivity in the car is at the heart of it. With this new round of financing, Cubic Telecom, along with our strategic partners, will be at the core of this transformative new phase for the automotive industry.”

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Intel's Latest Xeon E7 Packs up to 18 Cores for Big Performance Gains

Intel introduced its latest Xeon processor E7-8800/4800 v3 product families, targeted at real-time analytics and enhanced performance and reliability for mission-critical computing. The design is optimized for processing and analyzing massive data sets in system memory.

Some highlights for the Xeon processor E7-8800/4800 v3:

  • 40 percent average performance improvement compared to the prior generation.
  • Up to 6x improvement in business processing application performance for in-memory transactional workloads optimized with the new Intel Transactional Synchronization Extensions (Intel TSX).
  • Up to 18 cores, a 20 percent increase in cores compared to the prior generation, and up to 45 megabytes of last-level cache, the processor family can deliver up to 70 percent more decision support analytic sessions per hour4.
  • The processors support configurations up to 32 sockets with support for the industry’s largest memory capacity per socket (8-socket systems are capable of supporting up to 12 terabytes of DDR3 or DDR4 memory technology).
  • Product family comprises 12 processor models, including multiple segment optimized processors such as two high-frequency models that are designed for a subset of database applications requiring the fastest cores available. 

Intel said the new product family delivers up to 10x greater performance per dollar while driving up to an 85 percent lower total cost of ownership compared to alternative RISC architectures by reducing the cost of hardware acquisition and power and cooling.

The new Xeons also gain new security and reliability capabilities, including increased cryptographic performance via the latest Intel Advanced Encryption Standard New Instructions (Intel AES-NI), as well as additional micro-architectural improvements. In addition, Intel Run Sure Technology, a unique set of reliability, availability and serviceability (RAS) features for the Intel Xeon processor E7 family, is enhanced with new features designed to further ensure “five nines” availability for mission-critical applications.

“In the digital services economy, success or failure can depend on how quickly businesses act on insight from vast stores of data,” said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of the Data Center Group at Intel. “The Intel Xeon processor E7 v3 family is the engine for accelerating business intelligence through real-time analytics, enabling businesses to improve customer satisfaction through more personalized products and services, generate new revenue streams and enhance operational efficiency.”

HP Debuts NFV System with Helion OpenStack Carrier-Grade

HP introduced its pre-integrated network functions virtualization (NFV) platform for communications service providers (CSPs).

The HP NFV System, which leverages HP Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade, is an open source based cloud platform that enables CSPs to decouple the network functions from proprietary hardware appliances.

“Many telcos and suppliers have done NFV proof-of-concepts and are now ready to move to production. To do that, they need solutions that are open, carrier grade, and easy to deploy,” said Saar Gillai, senior vice president and general manager, Network Functions Virtualization and global lead, Telecommunications, HP. “HP NFV System provides an integrated, pre-tested, deployment-ready NFV hardware and software platform to get customers up-and-running quickly and confidently.”

HP NFV System consists of:

HP NFV Starter Kit – An all-in-one kit comprised of compute nodes with carrier grade performance, control nodes in high availability configuration running virtual infrastructure management (VIM) software – HP Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade, as well as physical infrastructure management (PIM) software and storage nodes. HP NFV Starter Kit is a complete turnkey solution for NFV clouds.

HP NFV Compute Kit – Comprised of server nodes that run virtual network functions (VNF) workloads, combined with carrier grade capabilities that enable fast packet processing required in telecommunications applications. HP NFV Compute kit can be added to the HP NFV Starter kit to augment its workload processing capacity, providing customers a flexible scale out path.

HP NFV Control Kit – Consists of HP Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade VIM software and PIM software, including HP OneView, HP Intelligent Management Center and HP Central Management Console. HP NFV Control Kit is designed for customers running custom, limited trials reusing existing infrastructure elements with minimal CAPEX spend.

HP NFV Storage Kit – A pre-configured solution that can be integrated with HP NFV Starter Kit to provide additional capacity for storage intensive applications like content delivery networks (CDN). HP NFV Storage Kit simplifies integration with existing HP NFV System environments, reducing time to roll-out new services, minimizing OPEX spend.

HP also introduced NFV Director 3.0, providing management and orchestration (MANO)capabilities that enhance the flexibility and scalability of CSPs current operations support systems (OSS), as well as new analytics capabilities to help harness NFV data to enhance real-time decision making.  New HP NFV analytics capabilities in HP NFV Director 3.0 are powered by HP Vertica, providing CSPs the ability to make decisions in real time using NFV data to improve uptime, traffic steering, resource, application and network usage. Predictive analytics gives CSPs critical insights on trending as well as historical capacity usage and threshold crossing warnings (alarms).

Availability for the HP NFV System Starter Kit, HP Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade, HP NFV Director 3.0 with HP NFV Analytics and HP Trusted NFV Platform Transformation services is targeted for the third quarter of calendar year 2015.

EMC Releases Open Source ViPR Controller for Software-defined Storage

EMC released "Project CoprHD" ("copperhead"), an open source version of its EMC ViPR Controller for software-defined storage. Project CoprHD makes the code for ViPR Controller – all the storage automation and control functionality – open for community-driven development.

ViPR Controller is storage automation software that centralizes and transforms EMC and third-party storage into a simple, extensible and open platform and EMC will continue to sell the commercial version of Project CoprHD, the EMC ViPR Controller, as a fully supported offering. ViPR Controller is offered as a key enabler for Third Platform applications that require fully integrated, next-generation scale-out storage architectures.

"For anyone left confused, today's announcements prove this is not your father's EMC. By offering access to Project CoprHD, the open source version of EMC ViPR Controller and free downloads of EMC ScaleIO – two key enabling pieces of our Software-Defined Storage portfolio – EMC has turned a corner by delving more deeply into open, collaborative software development with our customers, partners, developers and competitors. This represents a massive shift in our strategy that we believe will help accelerate our customers' efforts to develop new application-centric business models," stated Jeremy Burton, President Products and Marketing, EMC Corporation.

Big Switch' Big Tap Monitoring Fabric 4.5 Aims for Security and Visibility

Big Switch Networks released the latest version (4.5) of its Big Tap Monitoring Fabric 4.5, delivering new security monitoring and visibility features, including inline/out-of-band deployment, flow-level granularity, and advanced analytics.

Big Tap is a 1G/10G/40G network visibility fabric that leverages software defined networking (SDN) principles and high-performance ODM or Dell Open Networking switches to provide scalable data center wide monitoring.

“With the release of Big Tap 4.5, we add the ability to interoperate with more partner products, giving the end user comprehensive monitoring and security capabilities they desire, all while providing huge CapEx and OpEx reductions,” said Prashant Gandhi, Vice President of Product Management and Strategy at Big Switch. “With Big Tap’s high-value SDN software powering open, high-performance Ethernet switches, customers can now combat cyber threats in a pervasive manner while future-proofing their monitoring infrastructure for scale and programmability.”

Key features of Big Tap 4.5:

  • In-line deployment mode, in addition to out-of-band (enablement of DMZ deployment)
  • Service chaining with in-line mode (allows multiple security tools to be processed in a chain, as specified by user-defined policy)
  • sFlow generation (centrally configured flow generation on monitoring fabric)
  • Enhanced visibility for security (DNS tracking, DHCP tracking)
  • Header stripping for MPLS (support service provider WAN monitoring)
  • Configurable hash setting for granular load balancing of tools (allows tool elasticity)

Infinera and Arista Target Data Center Interconnection

Infinera and Arista Networks announced a technology alliance to deliver scalable, turn-key metro and regional cloud networking solutions.

The solution integrates Arista's 7000 series switching portfolio with the Infinera Cloud Xpress to deliver an interoperable solution designed for data center interconnects of up to 8 Tbps and extending up to 200km. The companies completed interoperability testing earlier this year.

"Arista and Infinera are redefining the datacenter interconnect market," said Ed Chapman, vice president, business development and alliances for Arista Networks. "Disruptive applications such as HPC, IP storage networking, content-intensive networking, and virtualized datacenters are paramount for Cloud-scale web customers."

"We teamed up with Arista to deliver optimized solutions for the rapidly growing Cloud services market," said Ashoka Valia, senior vice president, business development at Infinera. "We believe our alliance offers best in class solutions, combining Arista's programmable platforms with Infinera's Cloud Xpress Ethernet transport to deliver state-of-the-art scale, performance and energy efficiency for datacenter interconnection applications."

  • In September 2014, Infinera unveiled its Cloud Xpress, a compact, high-density, optical system optimized for the transport network that interconnects multiple data centers within a metro area. It leverages existing Infinera technologies, including its Photonic Integrated Circuit (PICs) and super-channel aggregation, to provide massive bandwidth in a form factor that data center operators can rack-n-stack and easily integrate into their operations. The Cloud Xpress provides point-to-point hyper-scale bandwidth over distances of up to 200km without amplification.  On the client side, it supports 10GbE, 40GbE, 100GbE interfaces and on the line side its offers 500 Gbps WDM super-channels. It can be managed with a wide range of tools: CLI, the Infinera Network Management System—DNA as well as an API-driven SDN control. 

Cloudera and Intel Accelerate Big Data Encryption by 2.5X

Cloudera and Intel have been able to achieve a 2.5X improvement in encryption off-load performance, enabling an entire Hadoop data set to be encrypted with a system overhead that ranges from only 1% to 4% depending on the workload.

The gains are made by optimizing Cloudera’s distribution, including Apache Hadoop, with the latest Intel Xeon processor with embedded Intel AES New Instructions (Intel AES-NI) has enabled more robust protection of critical enterprise data. As a result, full database encryption is now possible with minimal impact to system performance so that processing resources can run Hadoop jobs at a faster rate, and perform additional Hadoop jobs to accelerate business insights.

Cloudera also disclosed that following Intel’s $740M investment last year, its annual recurring subscription software revenue grew 100 percent year-over-year and enterprise subscription software customers grew by more than 85 percent.

HP and SAP Pitch S/4HANA on Helion Managed Cloud

SAP and HP are deepening their partnership to help customers transition to SAP Business Suite 4 SAP HANA (SAP S/4HANA) utilizing HP Helion Managed Cloud service.

“By combining SAP S/4HANA with HP migration and cloud expertise, we are demonstrating our commitment to providing customers with simplicity and choice for their journey to the digital economy,” said John Hinshaw, chief customer officer and executive vice president, Technology & Operations, HP. “Customers can now execute their transition to SAP S/4HANA on HP Helion Managed Cloud, confident in the knowledge they have two of the world’s best IT services firms working together to enable their success every step of the way. HP is also planning to use SAP S/4HANA to accelerate our own transformation.”

In addition, HP will serve as a premier strategic provider of cloud infrastructure services for business-critical SAP applications in SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud.

IBM Watson Develops Hybrid Cloud Capabilities

IBM Watson will be gaining new hybrid cloud capabilities that help bridge enterprise data with web-based cloud applications for faster and more insightful data intelligence.

IBM said Watson Hybrid Cloud will use Watson Explorer — a cognitive computing exploration capability for the enterprise — as the on-premises platform for the application development, combining enterprise data sources into the application through a scalable environment that keeps utilized data local, private and a secure.

"Enterprise developers are building applications that are more than just using infrastructure, they're creating capability to process business transactions that fuse insights spanning various data sets," said Mike Rhodin, senior vice president, IBM Watson. "What we see today is that the cloud is transforming into a hybrid data delivery model, so naturally developers seek flexibility to run apps and services across on-premises systems and the cloud; thereby making it much easier to deliver Watson to the enterprise."