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New York TImes, Data Centers, and Cisco

I was forwarded this article in the NY Times today… It is a rather interesting perspective on Cisco’s growth in Unified Communications and Collaboration software/infrastrucutre. What I like though is how the NY Times takes for granted that Cisco is already in the data center. I laugh a little bit because I thought my job here was to help get us into and make us more relevant in the data center! If I believed the title I would have to assume victory and move onto some other role.However, I don’t see it that way.Today we are in the network infrastructure. We have a good hold, but not where I’d like to see it in the application delivery space -- where the network intersects the business and productivity applications. Storage market is shifting and changing a lot, we have room to grow there. And with key announcements like our VN-Link technologies the network is going where it ahs never gone before. We still ahve a long road to hoe. :) But I appreciate the sentiments! Especially the Madonna comparison… not sure how I’d look in Gaultier, not sure I will ever try it either…dg

Unified Fabric: Sooner Than You Think

September 22, 2008 at 12:00 pm PST

After last week in VMworld, I am convinced that we will see broader adoption of a unified fabric in the server access layer sooner than later. For starters, the technologies that were introduced earlier this year are emerging from the certification cycle which is significantly increases the comfort level for customers. For example, Emulex, Intel, and QLogic adaptors have been added to the VMware ESX Hardware Compatibility List and EMC is expected certify FCoE solutions within the next few weeks. Read More »

Kudos to Paul and Co

September 21, 2008 at 12:00 pm PST

Rich Miller made a point I wanted to echo in a recent post:”Maritz and the VMware organization has proven their ability to retake some thought leadership and generate momentum.”Heading into VMworld, there were certainly some questions hanging out there with the changes in leadership and other competitive pressures. However, Paul and his team did an outstanding job re-casting the conversation and sending several thousand re-charged evangelists back out into the industry.

Signing Off From VMworld

September 19, 2008 at 12:00 pm PST

imageWhat a hectic but fun week at VMworld. The show finally ended yesterday, they were turning out the lights and ripping up the carpet and we still had folks lined up for Nexus 1000V demos--gotta love that.So, beyond the buzz around VN-Link and the Nexus 1000V, we had significant traffic to a number of the demo pods:Considering the audience, its not surprising that there was a lot of interest in the joint development work we have been doing with VMware to accelerate VDI traffic. The net results is a 60-70% increase in performance. You can get more details here.imageOne of the things that will have some interesting implications down the road is making NX-OS our single data center operating system. We now have single OS that spans switching (Nexus 5K/7K), storage (MDS) and servers (Nexus 1000V). As noted in an earlier post, NX-OS 4.1 was part of our Best of Show award for New Technology.Finally, there was significant interest in the unified fabric/FCoE pod. So, we now have the Emulex, Intel and QLogic adaptors on the ESX HCL, was have FCoE support in ESX 3.5-U2, and we expect EMC certification in October. The interesting thing was a shift in the questions we were getting from”what” and”why?” (which is what we have been getting) to”how”, so it seems like folks are starting to get comfortable with the concept and starting to understand the benefits.Somewhere out there, there is a slot machine with my name on it, so, signing-off for now…

Windows Server on WAAS — New Site, New Info

Cisco and Microsoft, long time partners, are happy to share that we have taken the next steps to bring our joint solution, Windows Server on WAAS (WoW), to market. We’ve developed a new, independent website with a wide range of information: The vision for this solution was first announced on February 26, 2008 at the launch of Windows Server 2008 (aka Longhorn).What Is WoW? What excites us about WoW is that it combines key branch IT services from Windows Server 2008 with Cisco’s leading WAN optimization solution, WAAS. This is a first of its kind offering where our joint customers can now run Windows Server branch IT services on a WAN optimization appliance from Cisco, the same way they would run Windows Server on a physical (white or branded box) server, but with substantially lower operating costs and much greater flexibility for locating individual IT services. You can call this the”branch version” of what many have been blogging about today — at the opposite end of the computing spectrum — Windows Server on midsize and supercomputers. Windows Server on WAAS — which is available and shipping — helps businesses improve the user experience in branch offices — and equally important, it helps IT teams reduce their branch IT costs and complexity. Customers now have the flexibility of maintaining key Windows services such as printing, authentication and DNS/DHCP services in a very efficient manor on a network appliance in the branch while still consolidating much of their technology infrastructure in data centers.More Choices = More Wins The ability for customers to make their own decision about centralization vs. localization of IT services allows them to design their branch IT infrastructure according to their business’ unique objectives and requirements, as well as cost priorities and IT footprint. For example, a customer might be able to centralize email services at the data center for branch employees to access remotely, and at the same time locally host Windows print services on Cisco WAAS at the branch.IT Services + WAN Optimization = Perfect MatchWindows Server on WAAS helps optimize application and IT service performance and reliability. Because WoW leverages Cisco’s strong set of WAN optimization technologies, WoW can really impact the performance of centralized applications, as well as those users might want to centralize as part of this IT project. Says one major US financial services company:”Windows Server on WAAS can offer flexibility to optimally locate IT resources, by moving servers to the data center but still maintaining local branch IT services. Based on our evaluation, one could achieve this flexibility with a minimal learning curve as Windows Server management on Cisco WAAS is the same as on a physical server.”Ĺ“Cisco and Microsoft are looking forward to rolling out Windows Server on WAAS and addressing customers’ branch needs and challenges with a flexible, innovative joint solution.