By Chris Ortbals, Senior Vice President, Product Management , Cbeyond Inc.
At the company’s inception in 1999, Cbeyond saw the potential in using IP technology to deliver enterprise-class productivity enhancing communications services to small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Today, as a cloud and communications services provider, Cbeyond continues to live up to its brand promise as the technology ally to small and mid-sized businesses,
As Cbeyond witnessed the business value large enterprises were achieving from cloud computing, we sought to devise a new strategy and products that would offer our SMB customers the same benefits in a secure, reliable and affordable way. Our competitors typically offer SMBs a commodity-grade or exclusively self-service type of cloud offering. However, we wanted to go further and provide a cloud service that would not only support end-to-end enterprise-grade production applications but also deliver a much superior experience for SMBs.
Our initial expansion into the cloud came with the 2010 acquisitions of MaximumASP, a hosting provider, and Aretta, a network-hosted VoIP provider. We integrated and enhanced the technologies we acquired into TotalCloud, our flexible and highly customizable cloud services platform.
We’ve had a successful relationship with Cisco since 1999, when we launched the first Cisco-powered 100% IP network delivering services to SMBs. So naturally we considered partnering with Cisco as we made the move into the cloud services market.
In the search for the right partner, we did our due diligence and evaluated three vendors. However, we found that only Cisco could help us deploy, provision, test and implement a cloud platform that not only met our requirements but that could also be launched within our aggressive timeframe.
Our TotalCloud Data Center, a service platform for public and private cloud solutions, is powered by Cisco technology, with Cisco Unified Computing System™, Cisco UCS Blade servers, and Cisco Nexus switches. This solution provides us with a repeatable, scalable architecture that can be used in our current and future data centers.
We collaborated with Cisco Services, for Data Center Optimization and Network Optimization Services since network performance is critical to running production applications in the cloud.
Other vendors would have pieced a cloud offering together from multiple sources so going with Cisco as a single vendor offered a clear advantage over using multiple vendors to accomplish the same task. Also, many cloud platforms are built like an island with limited integration into other products used by a service provider, however the Cisco offering is the complete opposite. Cisco has architected its technology in partnership with us so that their technology not only supports how we want our business to operate but how we deliver services and value to our entire customer base.
And partnering with Cisco paid off. With the help of Cisco Services, Cbeyond’s time-to-market for our cloud offering was reduced by two months, and we were able to secure new revenue opportunities earlier than expected.
This introductory post explains how one of Cisco’s security research groups established a network data collection capability for large amounts of network traffic. This capability was necessary to support research into selected aspects of the Domain Name Service (DNS), but it can be adapted for other purposes.
DNS exploitation is frequently the means by which malicious actors seek to disrupt the normal operation of networks. This can include DNS Cache Poisoning, DNS Amplification Attacks and many others. A quick search at cisco.com/security yields a lot of content published, indicating both the criticality and exposures associated with DNS.
Our research required the ability to collect DNS data and extract DNS attributes for various analytical purposes. For this post, I’ll focus on collection capabilities regarding DNS data. Read More »
Data generated by people and data generated by machines is actually quite different and as we move from the Internet of Things
to the Internet of Everything, this has some pretty interesting implications.
Data generated by things or machines is actually quite structured: A sensor is programmed or created to produce only a specific type of d
ata. Count the cars that cross the intersection, for example. And it’s predictable, sending a signal at specified intervals which makes the data pegged to a specific moment in time, as is the data’s relevance. It’s also generally low bandwidth, as you would imagine: A single signal from a sensor, providing specific data on a short time horizon.
Data generated by people, on the other hand, is highly unpredictable – I don’t know who I’m going to call or email and whether there’s a photo op when I step outside. Data from humans is unstructured, from spreadsheets to blooper videos, and has historical relevance. Tax returns, photos of your kids, the novel in draft in your desk drawer. It’s moderate to high bandwidth, depending on what you’re doing and it’s always on, always available. Read More »
Cisco Partner Summit is just a few short weeks away, and we’d like to officially welcome you to the start of an exciting and action-packed season of Partner Summit content here on the Channels blog and all over Cisco.
In the midst of tremendous disruption, it is impossible to tell where the global media industry is ultimately heading. But a recent analysis from the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) explores four possible future scenarios for the media industry. While they do not “predict” the future, the scenarios help build our understanding of possible outcomes — and how various industry players could be affected.
The Shape of Things To Come: Four Scenarios
We explored the ways certain industry developments could swing future outcomes. Combining these drivers into logical groupings (consumer behavior, regulatory requirements, technology, and macroeconomic conditions), we were able to define the following four scenarios, as shown in Figure 1. These scenarios are differentiated by consumer demand, industry structure, and content supply:
Dark Ages — low demand, consolidated industry, and relatively low content supply
Survival of the Fittest — low demand, fragmented industry, and high content supply
Golden Age of Content — high demand, consolidated industry, and controlled content supply
Wonderland — high demand, fragmented industry, and high content supply
Obviously, each of the scenarios will have different winners and losers. The financial impact and the implications for players across the industry value chain will substantially change by scenario. And in each scenario, distributors and infrastructure providers will need to consider different types of investments. Consequently, each type of player will need to adapt its competitive responses to the future scenario taking shape.
Figure 1. Four Future Scenarios Are Based on Various Groupings of Industry Drivers.
Source: Cisco IBSG, 2013
Following are examples of how two future scenarios could play out: Read More »