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Achieving Data Center Agility in the World of Many Clouds

Here’s an amazing fact I heard the other day: global network traffic has grown 16-fold since 2005 – 16-fold!  Largely due to the booming popularity of on-demand video, and the explosion of mobile computing including smart phones, tablets, and the Internet of Things, this juggernaut is not going to slow down anytime soon.  Yet, no data center leader I know of has received anywhere near 16 times the budget or staffing levels to keep pace.

I meet frequently with IT executives. What they need the most to keep pace often comes down to one thing: agility.  Agility allows them to meet the organization’s needs on demand.  To scale, and to scale fast.  And to create an IT environment designed to quickly adapt to new technology trends, increase efficiency, fuel innovation, unlock intelligence, and minimize risk.

At this year’s Cisco Partner Summit we announced Cisco Global Intercloud, and at Interop Las Vegas we’re adding new Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) possibilities, all to help you as an IT leader become more agile.  As you move away from legacy systems, you need a strategy and a roadmap to transform your data center.  You need to migrate toward a more resilient infrastructure centered on the network, and evolve it along with the needs of your applications.

Cost pressures, technology changes, and game-changers like cloud computing are forcing IT departments to learn how to deliver IT services differently.  With Cisco ACI, we can help you increase the visibility, programmability, and automation of your physical and virtual networks from a centralized point of management, while helping to improve your financial and productivity metrics.

LifeCycleApproach

And, Cisco’s unique unified architecture for the data center redefines the economics of your IT operations, so you can spend more of your resources to deliver value to your business.  With Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS), we can dramatically simplify your IT operations to help increase business agility, and reduce CapEx and OpEx.
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Cloud Services : Security and Compliance with Data Sovereignty Law

Cloud computing has rapidly matured in the market.  Many businesses have adopted private and public cloud strategies and have deployed on to cloud infrastructure and integrated with corporate support      systems.  As this cloud adoption occurred, security, privacy, and data governance have frequently been overlooked by the users of cloud computing, especially when demand comes from lines of business  rather than IT departments who already have strong security and privacy policies.  The desire to innovate rapidly and the adaption of agile software development methodologies that are paramount to accomplishing business success have come with a price of less security rigor.

CiscoDomainTen

There are 3 areas that must be addressed by cloud computing platforms to minimize security and     compliance risk:

Privacy and data sovereignty

The first area and one that is increasing in importance is privacy and data sovereignty (Domains 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10).  Privacy is the ability of an individual or group to ensure that personal or confidential data about them is kept confidential.  Data sovereignty is the concept that information which has been converted  and stored in binary digital form is subject to the laws of the country in which it is located.  The  information around a person or groups is meant to remain with private to them.

The laws and requirement for this vary from country to country, but many countries have very specific   and constraining laws for data sovereignty that can have substantial impact on logical and physical cloudand storage architectures.  It is critical that companies create a data privacy and sovereignty governance framework.  This must meet the requirements that consumer data does not leave the country of origin, personnel outside that country (provider) do not have access to any aspect of the data, and all operations (provider) must be performed by in-country residence staff.

Cloud Platform

The second area is the cloud platform itself that must be secure from an access, operations, and         application standpoint (Domains 1, 2, 4, 7).  Access via the portal as well as APIs must be secured with   API Firewalls, Web Application Firewalls, and Advanced Persistent Threat solutions.  Operationally, SSAE16 and CSA CCM are good guidelines, but I prefer PCI which requires basic controls like firewalls,  intrusion detection, and separate logical networks for control, management, network, storage, and  application security and governance. From the application standpoint, identity management and security policies are critical to ensure that only authenticated users can access the data to which they  have access rights.

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Summary: One Second in Baseball Brought to You By The Cloud

The world of sports is being transformed by the acceleration of big data, cloud and Internet of Everything technologies. One sport where this transformation is evident is in Major League Baseball.

MLB fans are voracious consumers of baseball data, making it important for MLB to be alive and available 24/7, 365 days a year – not just on opening day.

As discussed in Rick Smolan’s The Human Face of Big Data, the amount of data being captured during one moment of a game today is greater than that from the entire season only a few years ago.

While the game has continued to evolve on the field thanks to the work of MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM) and technologies such as PITCH/fx, it has rapidly been changing off the field as well. For example, Cisco Connected Sports solutions are transforming the fan experience, whether they are watching the game live from the stands or on their mobile devices.

As the Internet of Everything (IoE) continues to connect more people, process, data, and things, the future of baseball is sure to generate more networked connections to reveal valuable insights. Imagine what the world of sports will be like when connected baseballs can report back whether a ball was fair or out!

By adding network intelligence, convergence, orchestration, and analytics with a secure connection between devices – and connected athletes – the Internet of Everything promises to deliver powerful insights about athlete performance. An essential part of delivering these insights is through the cloud.

For a closer look at how big data, cloud and the Internet of Everything will enhance America’s favorite game, read the full blog: One Second in Baseball Brought to You By the Cloud.     

One Second in Baseball Brought to You By The Cloud

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New Applications are Knocking! Is your data center OPEN for business?

Mark your calendars. On April 2nd at Interop this week we will be bringing you an exciting new webcast -- “New Applications are Knocking! Is your Data Center OPEN for business?”  

Register Here!open

Cisco will be sharing new announcements led by Soni Jiandani, SVP at Cisco.  Joining us will be leaders from leading technology companies -

  • Citrix -- Sunil Potti, Group Vice President and General Manager, NetScaler Product Group
  • F5 -- Sangeeta Anand, Sr. VP, Product Management and Marketing
  • IBM -- Inder Gopal, Vice President, Networking Development and Technical Strategy
  • Microsoft -- Mike Schutz, General Manager -- Windows Server, Management and Appliances Product Marketing
  • RedHat -- Tim Burke, Vice President, Linux and Cloud Engineering

Expecting multi-vendor innovation around next-generation software-defined networking (SDN)? Hear what Cisco and these panelists from leading technology companies have to say:

OpFlex Panel

Cisco CIO Rebecca Jacoby, who’s delivering a keynote at Interop, will also be joining to share her perspectives on technology and how Cisco IT is embracing aspects of Application Centric Infrastructure.

It’s been five months since the seminal Nov 6 announcement of Application Centric Infrastructure and the momentum keeps accelerating -

  • Nexus 9508 ships -- Nov 2013
  • 800+ Nexus 9000 customers in pipeline
  • Over 30 ACI ecosystem companies – Jan 2014
  • Miercom performance benchmark records for Nexus 9516
  • ACI training programs for partners to empower 2 million CCIE/CCNA trained network engineers – Mar 2014
  • Nexus 9516 and APIC selected as Finalists for Best of Interop – Mar 2014
  • Next?? Tune into the webcast for more..!

To put great technology solutions into real world perspective, we will also be joined by several of Cisco’s customers from different segments and deployment models, providing insights into their experiences and best practices.

Join me and the rest of the Cisco team, as we continue to redefine the power of IT. April 2nd at 1 PM PST.

Register Here!

Already Attending Interop?

If you’re already attending Interop in person, please join me and the rest of the Cisco team for this live broadcast at the Mandalay Ball Room at 12.45PM.

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New Remote Integrated Services Engine (RISE) Enhances L4-7 Appliance Integration with Nexus 7000 Series

March 31, 2014 at 4:00 am PST

Remote Integrated Service Engine (RISE) is a new protocol being added to the Nexus 7000 and 7700 platforms through NX-OS (software upgradeable to existing devices), that integrates service appliances to be attached to Nexus 7000 Series switches with the same benefits as if the appliance was directly connected to the switch backplane, as if it were a dedicated service module. Cisco RISE establishes a communication path between the network data plane and the service appliance, simplifying deployments and optimizing data paths with better traffic visibility within the data center.

RISE Logical View

RISE allows a physical services appliance to be connected to the Nexus 7000 switch as if it was directly connected to the chassis backplane, providing greater traffic visibility and optimization, with simplified connectivity

Initially, Citrix NetScaler Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) and the Cisco Prime Network Analysis Module (NAM) are the first services appliances that have integrated with RISE, and have been tested and Certified as “RISE-enabled”. With the announcement of RISE, we expect to develop an ecosystem of partners that will work with Cisco to take advantage of this technology, including other application services vendors and firewalls.

The service appliances (e.g., Citrix NetScaler and Cisco Prime NAM) are directly attached by standard network cable to RISE-configured ports on the Nexus 7000 Series switches in a typical virtual Port Channel (VPC) deployment. Appliances can also be attached in indirect mode through any switched (Layer 2) network. Either scenario (direct or indirect connection) allows for device and data path redundancy for fault tolerance.

There are several management advantages to connecting service nodes through RISE. First, RISE can be configured through the Nexus management console or management platform. However, the specific service appliance features are still configured using the existing device management tools.  This ensures separation of duties between the networking and security or application teams, as well as eliminating any additional management complexity from the RISE connection.

Joe Weber“RISE offers a unique ability to tightly couple Nexus 7000 Series switches and Service Appliances within the Data Center.  We believe that this integration will provide the business agility from an operational and deployment perspective that Data Center engineers have been looking for to reduce the time it takes to instantiate new or modify existing services.  Data-path optimization through the use of Auto-PBR (Policy Based Routes) will relieve the need for manual modifications during add/moves/changes and improve network traffic visibility for the Security/Server administrator.”  — Joe Weber, Technical Solutions Architect, World Wide Technology

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