Monday, August 17, 2015

Spectra Logic Introduces Shingled Magnetic Recording

Spectra Logic introduced a new Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR)-based NAS disk platform designed to provide high-density bulk storage for reliable, high-capacity digital preservation.

SMR technology is described as the lowest cost spinning media currently available with costs as low as 9 cents per gigabyte raw.

Verde DPE (Digital Preservation Enterprise) utilizes the newest SMR disk technology and is optimized by Spectra Logic’s unique ZFS implementation, which provides data integrity with RAID Z3 triple parity, automatic rebuild to global spare drives, continuous data checksum, and asynchronous replication. The system is expandable to 7.4 PB raw in a single rack – 2.5 more dense than most other systems on the market.

“Verde DPE combines our 35 years of deep storage expertise with the latest in disk technology providing the most affordable way to preserve digital assets forever,” said Spectra Logic Chief Executive Officer, Nathan C. Thompson. “We will always provide our customers with best-in-class solutions and superior customer support for total confidence in the safety of their data.”

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Fujitsu Unveils Open 1FINITY Networking Platform

Fujitsu is introducing a new multi-layer category of networking equipment that leverages disaggregated architecture and dense form-factor blades for fast time-to-market, low initial investment, and efficient scaling. The first product is targeted at the data center interconnect market (DCI).

The Fujitsu 1FINITY platform marks a strategic departure from physically aggregated platforms, emphasizing open development, optimized functionality, and increased operating efficiencies.  Leveraging functional disaggregation, the initial platform release comprises four distinct product families providing transport, lambda, switch, and access functionality.

Fujitsu said each product in this 1FINITY family will be an independent system on a blade that is capable of being a full network element. The self-contained, modular blades can stand alone to deliver specific functionality or be combined with others for a broader network solution. The software framework logically reaggregates modular functions and provides a consolidated northbound interface, supporting communication with a user’s operations support system (OSS) and business support system (BSS).

The Fujitsu 1FINITY platform will use blades as compact as one rack unit (1RU).  The design eliminates rack partitioning due to chassis boundaries. Fujitsu will offer open pluggable optics. This will simplify procurement for users. Fujitsu will also support open APIs and open standard protocols. By separating the blades from a shelf, network operators will benefit from independent blade improvement and replacement as functionality advances.  Fujitsu also promises interoperability and backward compatibility between the new 1FINITY and its existing FLASHWAVE platforms.

The first product in the series is the 1FINITY T100 blade, which is designed specifically for metro data center interconnect (mDCI) applications.  The blade delivers 1.6 Tbps of bidirectional transport capacity.  Other key features include SDN-enabled Linux software, support for the latest optical technologies, and compliance with DWDM transmission standards. Customer trials of the 1FINITY T100 blade are in progress, and general availability is scheduled for December 2015.

“DCI is the fastest-growing application for optical networking equipment,” said Rod Naphan, senior vice president and chief technology officer, Fujitsu Network Communications. “Fujitsu’s response to this market demand is a purpose-built product with cost, space, and power attributes that will enable hyperscale data center operators to reduce their footprints and power requirements, efficiently scale their metro clouds, and create new Fujitsu will expand the 1FINITY portfolio beyond the mDCI solution with blades for wavelength services, extended-reach transport, high-density packet switching, innovative access, and multilayer interoperation with the FLASHWAVE 9500 platform."

EC Project SESAME Targets 5G with RAN Virtualization + Edge Computing

The European Commission has awarded EUR 8 million grant to a consortium of telecom industry vendors to develop the infrastructure required to support the future 5G network and communication systems.

Project SESAME, which is led by Hellenic Telecommunications Organization (OTE) and funded under the EC Horizon 2020 programme (H2020), will design and demonstrate virtualised, cloud-enabled, multi-operator, frequency agile, 5G-oriented radio access and services.

Project SESAME targets innovations around the three central elements of 5G: network intelligence through Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV) and Mobile Edge Cloud Computing, substantial evolution of the Small Cell concept to create targeted coverage and capacity, and the consolidation of multi-tenancy in mobile network infrastructure; allowing several operators and service providers to engage in new sharing models.

"The old model for cellular, with dedicated hardware and dedicated spectrum per operator, is breaking down," said Dr. Nick Johnson, CTO of ip.access. "As demand continues to grow exponentially, with limited additional spectrum, flat subscriber growth and falling revenues per subscriber, new ways have to be found to use the resources we have more efficiently. This project does this by allowing spectrum to be shared between operators in a controllable, measurable and agile way."

Project SESAME consortium includes 18 members that span across the European Union, including the UK, Spain, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Greece.

NYT: AT&T Helped U.S. Spy on Internet on a Vast Scale

Citing leaked documents, The New York Times reported that AT&T has passed billions of emails flowing across its domestic network to the NSA and that it was instrumental in helping the NSA to wiretap the United Nations in New York.

The article describes a "highly collaborative" relationship between 2003 and 2013. The leaked documents are attributed to Edward Snowden.

Video: Operators Want a Single Journey of Transformation

Operators are going to embark on a single transformation journey covering SDN, NFV, cloud and the OSS transformation, says Bala Thekkedath, SDN/NFV Product Marketing Lead for Ericsson.

There are numerous open source projects underway in each layer of the network.  OpenDaylight is the open source effort underway for the SDN controller. Ericsson has already moved from use cases to Service Provider deployments for SDN controllers. But we have to remember that the transformation must happen at other layers as well.

See 2-minute video:

Friday, August 14, 2015

Ciena's Senior VP of Worldwide Sales to Step Down

Philippe Morin will step down as senior vice president of worldwide sales and field operations, effective October 31, 2015. Morin joined Ciena through its acquisition of Nortel’s Metro Ethernet Networks (MEN) business in March 2010, having served in various leadership positions for more than 20 years at Nortel.

“Philippe played an instrumental role in Ciena’s successful integration of the Nortel MEN business and has made significant contributions toward our continued growth and diversification as we lead the industry into a new era of open, software-defined, multi-vendor networking,” said Gary B. Smith, president and CEO, Ciena. “On behalf of the entire Ciena team, we thank Philippe for his dedicated leadership and wish him the very best as he pursues his next challenge.”

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Video: New IP and Open Networking Put Control in Customer Hands

An important aspect of New IP and Open Netwoking is the need to put control in the hands of the customer, says Brocade's Kevin Woods, Director of Product Management, Software Networking.

The video discusses Brocade's OpenDaylight controller.

See 1-minute video:

Video: Enabling a New Way for Enterprise-to-Cloud Direct Connect

There is a strong and growing need for enterprises to connect directly to cloud providers, but manual configuration remains a big challenge, says Al Burgio, CEO of Console.

Console is a stealthy start-up based in Santa Clara, California.  A launch event is planned for September 9th.

See 1-minute video:

Google Cloud Announces Media Rendering Service

The Google Cloud Platform is launching profession Media Solutions ranging from rendering to transcoding to content distribution around the world.

Media Solutions on Cloud Platform offers both turnkey tools tailored to individual artists like Zync, as well as custom architectures to bridge large on-prem render farms to the cloud seamlessly.

Video transcoding software currently support by the Google Cloud Platform includes Wowza Streaming Engine, Zencoder, and PandaStream.

Google Cloud Launches Dataflow and Cloud Pub/Sub

Google Cloud Platform announced availability of two new data processing services: Cloud Dataflow, Cloud Pub/Sub, and BigQuery.

Google said its Cloud Dataflow is specifically designed to remove the complexity of developing separate systems for batch and streaming data sources by providing a unified programming model.  It leverages MapReduce, FlumeJava, and Millwheel.

Google Cloud Pub/Sub is designed to deliver real-time and reliable messaging for applications.  Google's alpha and beta customers have already used it to deliver over a trillion messages. Cloud Pub/Sub connects your services to each other, to other Google APIs, and third parties. The idea is to integrate applications and services reliably, as well as analyze big data streams in real-time. Pricing begins at 5¢ per million message operations for sustained usage.

Switch Opens 470,000 Square Foot SUPERNAP LAS VEGAS 9

A robot cut the ribbon to inaugurate a new 470,000-square-foot, SUPERNAP LAS VEGAS 9 colocation data center.

The data center, which is owned and operated by Switch, has already been awarded its Tier IV Design Certificate by the Uptime Institute.  Switch expects the new data center will also be awarded a Tier IV Constructed Facility Certificate and Tier IV Gold Operational Sustainability Certificate.

SUPERNAP LAS VEGAS 9 will support up to 50 MVA of power and will bring Switch’s total square footage past 1.5 million in Las Vegas.

“Switch was started with the idea that data centers needed to not only be able to handle the scale of the Internet but do so in the most efficient manner possible,” said Rob Roy, who invented the Wattage Density Modular Design (WDMD) system in 2005. “We want to power the next evolution of the Internet sustainably and with respect for our natural resources."

Qualcomm Completes $2.4 Billion Acquisition of CSR

Qualcomm completed its previously announced acquisition of CSR plc, a developer of connectivity, audio, imaging and location chips, for approximately US$2.4 billion.

CSR's areas of expertise include silicon chips for voice & Music; Bluetooth Smart; Automotive Infotainment; Indoor Location.

Cambridge Silicon Radio Limited is currently an indirect, wholly-owned subsidiary of CSR that operates, along with its affiliates, substantially all of CSR’s engineering, research and development functions, along with substantially all of the CSR products and services businesses. Cambridge Silicon Radio Limited will be renamed Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd., which will become a subsidiary of Qualcomm Technologies.

 “As we strive to connect billions more devices, automobiles and people within the Internet of Everything, we are enthusiastic about the growth that this combination will foster,” said Steve Mollenkopf, chief executive officer, Qualcomm Incorporated. “CSR’s complementary strengths in connectivity, audio technologies and systems-on-chips will help strengthen Qualcomm Technologies’ position in the IoE and automotive industries, and add to a broad and highly advanced portfolio.”

  • In September, CSR introduced dual mode Bluetooth 4.1 compliant chips designed for low latency and ultra low-power wireless gaming controllers.

Ceragon Posts Revenue of $94.8 Million, up 4.8% YoY

Ceragon Networks reported quarterly revenue of $94.8 million, up 4.8% from the second quarter of 2014, and up 1.2% from the first quarter of 2015. Net income was $1.3 million, or $0.02 per diluted share for the second quarter of 2015. Gross margin came in at 28.2%, compared to 26.3% in the second quarter of 2014 and 25.9% in the first quarter of 2015.

"We reached a very important milestone in the second quarter by clearly restoring our financial stability with solid profitability and positive cash flow," said Ira Palti, president and CEO of Ceragon. "More important, we are much more confident that we can continue the trend of profit improvement.

Akamai Prevails in Long Running Patent Dispute with Limelight Networks

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit sitting en banc held that Limelight Networks is liable for direct infringement of a content delivery patent asserted by Akamai Technologies.

In 2008, a jury had returned a verdict that Limelight was infringing the patent and awarded Akamai over $45 million in damages. The ruling reinstates liability for infringement, which had been overturned in a post-trial ruling that has been the subject of appellate proceedings since.

"We are extremely pleased with The Federal Circuit's decision," said Aaron Ahola, Deputy General Counsel at Akamai.  "Akamai is at the forefront of innovation on the Internet and today's ruling recognizes the strength of our intellectual property.  We believe strongly that a company's intellectual property is a vital asset which must be defended to protect shareholder value. "

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Cisco Posts Record Revenues, up 4% YoY in Latest Quarter

Cisco reported fourth quarter revenue of $12.8 billion  (increase of 4% year over year) , net income (GAAP) of $2.3 billion or $0.45 per share, and non-GAAP net income of $3.0 billion or $0.59 per share.

"I'm stepping into the CEO role at an incredibly exciting time for Cisco. We closed out our fiscal year with record revenues and record non-GAAP EPS, for both Q4 and FY15. I'm particularly pleased with the strong growth of deferred revenue which shows we are very effectively driving our business to a more predictable software-based business model, at the same time as growing revenues and earnings," said Chuck Robbins, Cisco chief executive officer.

Some highlights for the quarter:
  • Product revenue and service revenue each increased 4%. 
  • Sales of Nexus 3K, 9K and ACI amounted to $438 million for the quarter, up 100% YoY and 50% sequentially
  • Nexus 9K added 1,400 customers in the quarter for a total of 4100 customers
  • 26 out of the top 28 largest enterprise customers are now 9K customers, with 30% of the customers being new 9K customers in Q4
  • Core routing sales are now growing at a triple digit pace and Cisco believes it has solidified its lead in this market
  • Meraki's cloud based model is succeeding and is now on a billion dollar annual run rate
  • In terms of total revenue by geographic segment, Americas was up 7%, while both EMEA and APJC were flat. 
  • Product revenue growth was led by Collaboration and Data Center at 14% each. 
  • Service Provider revenue was up 2%
  • Switching and NGN Routing grew by 2% and 3%, respectively.
  • Gross Margin -- On a non-GAAP basis, total gross margin and product gross margin were 62.1% and 61.0% respectively

Docker Content Trust Ensures Integrity of Containers

A newly released Docker Content Trust capability uses digital signatures to ensure the integrity of Dockerized content. The idea is to allow Docker users to operate exclusively on signed content when building or deploying Dockerized applications. The capability is built using Notary and The Update Framework.

When enabled, Docker Content Trust ensures that all operations using a remote registry enforce the signing and verification of images. In particular, Docker’s central commands `push`, `pull`, `build`, `create` and `run` will only operate on images that either have content signatures or explicit content hashes.

Docker said it will be signing the Docker Hub Official Repos, providing users with a trusted set of base images they can use to build distributed applications.

“As organizations evolve from a monolithic software architecture to distributed applications, the secure distribution of software becomes increasingly difficult to solve,” said Diogo Mónica, Security Lead for Docker. “Without a standard method for validating the integrity of content, Docker has the unique opportunity to leapfrog the status quo and build a system that meets the strongest standard for software distribution. With Docker Content Trust, users have a solution that works across any infrastructure, offering security guarantees that were not previously available to them.”

Docker Content Trust also generates a Timestamp key that provides protection against replay attacks, which would allow a malicious actor to serve signed but expired content. Docker manages the Timestamp key for the user, reducing the hassle of having to constantly refresh the content client-side.

Windstream Expands 100G Rollout with Infinera

Windstream Carrier Solutions, which has been deploying a 100G long-haul express network using Infinera's Intelligent Transport Network solution since 2014, confirmed a number of milestones.

This year, Windstream has implemented:

  • 12 new 100G markets including:  Buffalo, Denver, Houston, San Antonio, Oklahoma City, and Tulsa 
  • added 3,900 fiber route miles featuring Infinera’s 500G super-channel technology 
  • 20 Day Express Install guarantee for customers leveraging the Long-Haul Core Network

During the remainder of 2015, Windstream plans to expand 100G service to seven additional markets, including Minneapolis and Louisville in September.

The carrier also plans to add 5,600 route miles to its Long-Haul Core Network. providing additional diverse routing options from major cities.

“Carrier customers are increasingly looking to Windstream Carrier Solutions to meet their transport service needs. Windstream is uniquely positioned to provide long-haul and metro services in both Tier 1 and tertiary markets, often via diverse carrier routes,” said Joe Scattareggia, vice president of Sales for the Carrier and Content verticals at Windstream Carrier Solutions.

ADTRAN Simplifies Virtual Network Function Rollouts

ADTRAN introduced its Virtual Network Function (VNF) solution suite, offering the same feature set and proven interoperability found in ADTRAN’s advanced multi-service, multi-functional networking solutions currently deployed in small businesses.

The VNF suite is aimed at helping telecom and cable service providers to transition from embedded customer premises equipment (CPE) solutions to virtualized, software-based networks without compromising performance.

ADTRAN said that while most NFV implementation strategies utilize cloud-based VNF components sourced from various vendors to allow best-in-breed networking functions. its approach its to virtualize the most valuable CPE functions—such as routers, firewalls, enterprise session border controllers (eSBC) and voice quality monitoring (VQM).  This gives gives service providers the option to bundle them into a single VNF, eliminating multi-vendor overhead and associated server hardware related expenses.  For additional flexibility and for those service providers that want to pick and choose which network functions are virtualized, ADTRAN offers functions on a more granular basis, allowing the creation of service chains from multiple software vendors.

“ADTRAN has long provided open architecture throughout its entire portfolio of solutions and services to pre-position our customers for a smooth transition to virtual networks. Our expertise in bridging the end-to-end network – from the carrier to the enterprise – gives us unique insight into what service providers need from their VNF functionality. Giving providers the option to bundle multiple networking functions into a single VNF eases deployment headaches, improves efficiency and lowers expenses,” said Chris Thompson, director, customer device portfolio, ADTRAN. “As service providers’ business models evolve, ADTRAN is designing, integrating and managing the next generation of networking solutions to align with that forward-looking vision.”

Red Hat Supports Container-Based Deployment Strategies

Red Hat release a new version of its Satellite systems management solution, adding security capabilities, enhanced discovery and container management capabilities across physical, virtual and cloud environments.

Red Hat Satellite 6.1 brings users significant upgrades in three key areas:

  • Container management
  • Security
  • Provisioning
  • Container Management

The core capabilities of Satellite 6.1 provide Docker with more control around versioning, authentication and integration with existing platforms. A scalable on-premise registry based with Role-Based Access Controls, auditing and a robust API are now available for developers seeking to manage systems in a container-based environment.

Satellite 6.1 brings upgrades to errata management, allowing users to address security, bugfix and enhancement errata. Improved reporting now enables organizations to more quickly identify and respond to hosts affected by a security vulnerability, minimizing downtime and sensitive data exposure in vulnerability scenarios such as those presented by Shellshock, Heartbleed and GHOST. Additionally, OpenSCAP, a standardized approach to maintaining enterprise system security, is now available in tech preview. OpenSCAP automatically verifies the presence of patches, checks system security configuration settings and examines systems for signs of compromise in daily/weekly/monthly cadences that can be customized by end users to best fit their own internal security protocols.

SoftBank Group Buys More Shares of Sprint on Open Market

Saying it believes the share price of Sprint is under valued, SoftBank Group announced a program of open market purchases of Sprint's publicly traded shares.

Speaking on Sprint's quarterly financial conference call last week, Masayoshi Son, Chairman & CEO of SBG and Chairman of Sprint, said he is enthusiastic about Sprint's prospects.