We embarked upon this episode with an agenda. Take a sample of the building momentum around Cisco ACI. The growing benefits, details and momentum behind the Application Centric Infrastructure. First announced in November 2013 and just before we start shipping.
In my estimation, we saw five areas worth highlighting from Cisco Live:
Cisco is ready to ship ACI
Partnerships and joint use-cases are resonating with customers
Strong integrations with APIC through OpFlex
Partners see strong customer demand
Partner are getting ready to ship ACI-based solutions
Great Q&A with Soni Jiandani from Network World’s John Dix: Cisco describes its SDN Vision She nails Cisco’s ACI vs. SDN messaging and any confusion you may still have with the positionoing. She also puts good context around the OpFlex protocol.
Application Awareness -- top down control based on what was important
A new, tighter coupling between software and hardware
Recognition that virtualization on the compute side had not been accompanied by requisite innovation on the network wide -- potential for wasted opportunity.
East West traffic was growing gangbusters in the data center and needed assisted.
We walk through the following components of the offering:
APIC -- Centralized cluster controller
Northbound API for standardized communication and control from Applications that need to interact with the Fabric
Southbound API for third party network services integration
Profiles -- Application Network Profiles -- the logical representation of all components of the application and its interdependencies on the application fabric
ACI Fabric -- new stateless hardware within the Nexus portfolio, 9000 series
So what was still missing?
- APIC GUI -- How would we interact?
- Migration plan -- Clarity on how to leverage within existing networks
- Southbound interface -- more details on network control
- Partner Plans -- who would support?
And that formed much of what we wanted to cover for today’s show -- filling in the blanks on the momentum…just before the big release this summer.
Shashi Kiran level on set on what has been accomplished.
Ronak Desai, Director of Software Development walked Jimmy Ray through the new APIC interface.
I got a chance to ask Mike Cohen about OpFlex and where it fits.
And finally, Jimmy Ray weighed in with his view on partner support and the growth we are seeing for the Eco-System.
Simplicity has always been a pain point for video collaboration systems. The new DX and MX systems leverage the same interfaces and are available at price points that make video more accessible for any size company. Combined with Intelligent Proximity that allows control of endpoints, seamless handoff of calls from one device to another, the ability to better interact with your online meetings – collaboration now becomes a real part of how we interact with devices and our work day.
One of the best times I always have at Cisco Live involves getting to play ‘TV Anchor’ for the various live shows we stream. Well the Cisco TV team lets us use their equipment to do a live version of TechWiseTV each afternoon as well. Now honestly, I do plan these out…a little. But our day three show is generally a ‘hey…what do we WANT to do” kind of show. Planning for day 3 simply involved asking Jimmy Ray and Tina what they wanted. We had TWO wireless cameras this year to play with so it felt like we could do a little more. As for me (with input from the hillbilly of course), we wanted to take advantage of Wireless Stew’s presence and get him up to tell his story…so that is how we started.
Stewart Gouman’s is a fantastic fan of the show, running his wireless consultancy and very informative blog from the Great White North. He has sought us out in just a few visits over the years stopping by the studio in San Jose or catching us while at Cisco Live when we all end up in the same place. Watch the show and get his career and community advice.
One of my favorite unsung hero’s for making life easier with what seems like all of your Cisco devices: Smart Call Home. Machine to machine communication that is disabled by default…but just a few quick steps could make your life SO MUCH EASIER.
Smart Call Homeproactively flags device issues and initiates resolution which can dramatically improve business continuity. Enabled devices continuously monitor their own health and notify you of potential issues, often before business is affected. This automated support capability reduces resolution time by up to 80%.
Imagine getting these four benefits -- right away
24 hour self-monitoring and analysis of potential problems (I get this through my wife…but that’s a different story)
Proactive alerts with actionable resolution insights sent right to your inbox
Auto-generated Service Requests expediting support from Cisco TAC
Access to detailed device diagnoses, resolution insights, advisories and history reports through a dedicated portal.
Imagine TAC calling you with resolution of a problem you did not even know existed yet? It could happen.
Smart Call Home transforms device data from machine code for easy-to-execute, plain-language description of the alert, possible reasons for the fault, and recommendations on how to fix the issue.
Are you still being ‘defensive’ with your mobility strategy? Truly embracing mobility is not about offering Wi-Fi or a comfy chair. Getting offensive with mobility involves the planned intersection of technology and business strategy allowing you to outthink and outpace your competition.