Cisco Blogs


Cisco Blog > Data Center

Cisco Validated Designs for Cloud -Part 2- Cloud Service Assurance and Intelligent Automation

Welcome back to this series of blogs on Cisco Validated Designs (CVD)  for Cloud – In my first blog, I talked with Tom Nallen on the concept and benefits of CVD for Cloud – The second interview was with Laszlo Bojtos on a new CVD for Cloud : Cloud Service Assurance – Today we will explore one specific but critical aspect of this work, which is  the integration of Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud and Zenoss Cloud Service assurance.

So obviously  orchestration systems can make better decisions with performance KPIs, and can also be used to provide precise and immediate monitoring for newly created or changed tenant services. For advanced workflow integration, all Zenoss Cloud Service Assurance (CSA)  function and data is available using the documented JSON interface.

As mentioned , this CVD also features the integration of Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud and Zenoss CSA as an example of how Zenoss’ API can be used with Cisco’s cloud management software. It shows IA for Cloud provisioning VMs while sending information about the tenant and VM to Zenoss to enable the creation of a dependency map.

Zenoss CSA is designed to make it easy to integrate Cisco Cloud infrastructure and cloud management software, Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud, into an existing data center. Zenoss CSA will be integrated with client’s MoM system and configured for automated event forwarding.

Read More »

Tags: , , , , ,

Summary: Water, Water Everywhere; Nor Any Drop to Drink

Find out how data centers help to bring clean water to citizens. Read the full article: Water, Water Everywhere; Nor Any Drop to Drink

Tags: , , , , , ,

Cisco Validated Designs for Cloud -Part 2 – Cloud Service Assurance

Last week Tom Nallen introduced the concept and benefits of the Cisco Validated Design – So  I asked today Laszlo Bojtos, System Manager for the Cisco Cloud Service Assurance validation effort, to illustrate this concept with the recently published Cloud Service Assurance for Virtualized Multi-Services Data Center 2.2 Cisco Validated Design.   This design guide is one of the recent CVD releases in the Cloud systems management and orchestration area.  You can view the complete portfolio of Cisco Validated Designs for Data Center and Virtualization on Design Zone at  www.cisco.com/go/designzone/datacenter . We will cover this topic in two chapters , with a second chapter  more focused on the integration of Cisco Intelligence Automation for Cloud.

Q: Laszlo, last time we heard that Service Assurance is critical for companies, organizations and service providers looking to deliver cloud –based services.  Why is it so important?

A: Enterprises and Service Providers need to ensure that DC/Cloud services can be trusted and service levels ensured, hence they need to use advanced service assurance tools to automate service monitoring and issue resolution.  Cisco Systems Development Unit (SDU) identified key enterprise and service provider data center and cloud service assurance requirements and selected Zenoss Inc for Cisco Unified Data Center management implementation.  Cisco’s Cloud Service Assurance provides both fault and performance management with service impact and root-cause analysis.

As a DC/Cloud domain manager, Zenoss Cloud Service Assurance (CSA) provides comprehensive monitoring coverage for data center infrastructure components and workloads, and tracks ever-changing relationships between infrastructure components and applications automatically.  Zenoss CSA understands how business services make use of cloud resources and provides contextual root cause analysis to provide clarity during event storms, and ties cloud projects easily into existing management processes.

Q: And customers can purchase Zenoss CSA from Cisco, right?

A: Yes, Zenoss Cloud Service Assurance (CSA) became a Cisco SolutionsPlus product from Zenoss  and was added to the Cisco price list in September, 2012.

Q: OK, I’ve done a little research on Zenoss CSA. What is the difference between the original Zenoss Service Dynamics product and Zenoss Cloud Service Assurance (CSA) from Cisco?

A: Zenoss CSA was built from the same proven code base that powers Zenoss Service Dynamics. We worked with Zenoss on additional ZenPacks (product adapters) and new functions for complete Cisco Unified DC (VMDC reference architecture) coverage. Then, we created a Cisco Validated Design through the verification of this Zenoss CSA package in Cisco Virtualized Multi-service Data Center (VMDC) lab facilities. It’s pre-built and pre-tested to deliver success rapidly. Additionally, Zenoss CSA is licensed and priced with the Cisco Data Center in mind.

Two key new Zenoss CSA functions are expanded monitoring coverage and auto-discovery of VMDC networking devices.  The initial release covers Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) and MDS 9000 series platforms, as well as the Nexus 1000v and Cisco Virtual Security Gateway (VSG), and the Nexus 2000, 5000, and 7000 series.  It also covers the Catalyst 6500 series and Virtual Switching System (VSS) with the Firewall Services Module (FWSM) and the Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) modules.   The Cisco Aggregation Services Router (ASR) series is also included in the monitoring and auto-discovery scope of Zenoss CSA.

The diagram below illustrates how Zenoss Cloud Service Assurance simplifies data center & cloud infrastructure management and provides a single API to other management applications (orchestration, chargeback, service desk etc.).

 

 

 

Q: And best practices to set this up are described in the CVD, right?  Briefly summarize the key technical benefits of Zenoss CSA one more time for us, Laszlo.

Read More »

Tags: , , , ,

Unified Data Center IQ Challenge : Two more weeks to win

As a quick reminder , to participate to this 6 weeks challenge and have a chance to win every week a new iPAD , you want to visit our Facebook page. The questions are submitted on Sunday midnight PST, and answers have to be provided  at the end of the week . Participation is easy and fun and allow you to collect points to compete for the highest IQ score. This best Unified Data Center “brain” will be the winner of the Grand Prize (valued US $2000).  Every week-end , you can answer bonus  questions, which give you additional points to catch up for the Grand Prize

Just a quick note today to share  with our numerous participants to the contest that this week challenge will be extended to Friday midnight PST  (instead of Friday noon) due to an outage on Monday , which impacted the access to the questions most of the day .

It’s a pleasure to introduce to you our last week winner Trevor Roberts Jr. (@VMtrooper
Trevor is a 15-year veteran of the IT industry.  As an Architect for VCE, he helps customers see the value of Cisco Data Center Solutions for Virtualization and Cloud Deployments.
Trevor believes the programmability of the Cisco UCS platform, especially, facilitates DevOps personnel realizing automation and orchestration goals that are challenging to achieve on other platforms.  This versatility allows IT departments and businesses to respond much quicker to customer demands.  Further, Trevor is excited to see how Cisco’s Software-Defined Networking (SDN) initiatives will spur the next evolution of Data Center Automation.
In his free time, Trevor enjoys travelling and blogging about applications of Cisco UCS and Nexus 1000V for Cloud at www.VMTrooper.com

If you haven’t entered the contest this week in answering the questions on virtualization it’s your opportunity to shine and win a new iPAD.

The questions as usual are pretty easy with multiple choice – You just need one correct answer to be eligible to win the weekly prize – Check out – If you know one answer you’d better go right away to Facebook to fill the form – All what we need is your e-mail address and your choices

  • Part of the Cisco multi-hypervisor strategy for Cisco Nexus 1000V , which solution is currently in beta?
    • Nexus 1000V virtual switch on the Citrix XenServer virtualization platform
    • Nexus 1000V virtual switch on Microsoft Hyper-V in Windows Server 2012
    • Nexus 1000V virtual switch the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) open source hypervisor for Linux
    • Nexus 1000V virtual switch on the VMware vSphere hypervisor
  • Which Citrix solution Cisco will include in its “Cloud Network Services” portfolio
    • High-performance NetScaler MPX appliances
    • Multi-tenant NetScaler SDX platforms
    • Software-based NetScaler VPX virtual appliances
    • All of the above
      Read More »

Tags: , , , , ,

One More Step Closer “Towards an Industry Standard for Benchmarking Big Data Workloads”

Following the successful workshop “Towards an Industry Standard for Benchmarking Big Data Workloads” (WBDB 2012) held in May 2012 in San Jose [2],  the Second Workshop on Benchmarking Big Data Workloads (WBDB2012.in) [1] will be held in Pune, India from 17 to 18 December at the Hinjewadi Campus of Persistent Systems Ltd, colocated with the 18th International Conference on Management of Data (COMAD 2012) [3].

I have the great pleasure to co-chair this workshop with my distinguished colleagues Chaitanya Baru, Meikel Poess, Milind Bhandarkar and Tilmann Rabl with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF.gov).

The objective of the workshop series is to foster the development of industry standards for providing objective measures of the effectiveness of hardware and software systems dealing with Big Data. Several industry experts and researchers are expected to present and debate their vision on benchmarking big data platforms.

[1] WBDB 2012.in http://clds.ucsd.edu/wbdb2012.in, CFP: http://clds.ucsd.edu/sites/clds.ucsd.edu/files/WBDB.in_.cfp_.pdf
[2] WBDB 2012 http://blogs.cisco.com/datacenter/towards-an-industry-standard-for-benchmarking-big-data-workloads/, http://clds.ucsd.edu/wbdb2012/
[3] COMAD 2012 http://comad.in/comad2012
[4] WBDB 2012.in Program Committee http://clds.ucsd.edu/wbdb2012.in/organizers

Tags: , ,