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ONE + ONE = 6: New Math for Enterprise Programmability

In my previous 3-part blog series I discussed the challenges in the Enterprise WAN and relevancy of SDN in overcoming these challenges and how Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture addresses these WAN challenges. In this blog post I will discuss how Cisco ONE (Open Network Environment) and ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture fit together. In a following blog, I will discuss how Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture provides six significant benefits to enterprises through programmability. ONE + ONE = 6 is the new math for Enterprise programmability!

Cisco ONE

Cisco ONE (Open Network Environment)

Cisco ONE is a comprehensive, Cisco wide solution (not just data center) approach to making networks more open, programmable, and application-aware. There are numerous blogs, and videos about Cisco ONE that can be found here. As a brief summary, Cisco ONE comprises of 3 pillars that provide a programmable approach to both physical and virtual infrastructure:

  • Platform APIs: Programmatic access to network infrastructure begins with APIs that can access the entire end-to-end network infrastructure. OpenFlow, onePK and CLI are examples of such APIs.
  • Controllers & Agents: This pillar provides the automated provisioning of network services and applications. A Controller, that is open sourced with OpenDaylight, is at the heart of this pillar and interacts with agents embedded on network infrastructure elements and enables automated provisioning, orchestration and access to network wide analytics.
  • Virtual Overlays: Any comprehensive, end-to-end network environment increasingly includes virtualized infrastructure. Cisco ONE provides multiple ways of seamlessly connecting the physical and virtual infrastructure.

You can find a lot more detail on Cisco ONE here.

 

Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture

I covered the details of the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture in my earlier blog. To quickly summarize the 3-layered architecture is show below and each of the layers described.

 

Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture

Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture

  • Network Element Layer:  The Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture is built upon a foundation of distributed intelligent and programmable network devices across the end-to-end infrastructure. Supporting various APIs such as OpenFlow, onePK and CLI, this layer provides programmatic access to the entire enterprise network.
  • Control Layer: With the Cisco ONE/XNC Controller at the heart of this layer, the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture delivers speed and ease of provisioning across the entire Enterprise network. This eliminates the per-device provisioning and vastly improves the speed and accuracy of adding new services consistently across the network. The Control Layer also offers advanced analytics across the entire Enterprise network, LANs and WAN, through open APIs. The real-time analytics data is available for any applications to use as well as for IT to monitor and diagnose any network issues.
  • Network-Aware Application Layer: Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture enables applications and services to be network-aware by abstracting away the network in the Control Layer and making advanced network analytics available to the applications. Applications and services can now be smart about the network conditions, access network wide intelligence from the Control Layer through open APIs, and deliver an optimal user experience, securely, while simplifying IT operations.

 

Cisco ONE and ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture

Now, the obvious question is: how does the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture fit with Cisco ONE? And what the benefits to Enterprises from such a comprehensive approach to network-wide programmability enabled through an architecture that has a high degree of openness?

First, let’s see how the three pillars of Cisco ONE apply to the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture and Cisco’s Enterprise portfolio.

  • Platform APIs: Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture supports platform APIs such as OpenFlow, onePK and CLI. The Cisco Enterprise portfolio across the branch and campus are the components of the Network Elements Layer and support these platform APIs.For example the Catalyst switches and the ISR routers support OpenFlow and onePK APIs.
  • Controllers & Agents: The Cisco ONE/XNC Controller (see a demo here) enables automated provisioning, orchestration and access to network wide analytics across the enterprise. With topology abstraction, the ONE Controller provides provisioning of network services such as QoS and ACLs consistently across the wired and wireless networks. We have new and exciting announcements on the ONE/XNC Controller for enterprise segment coming soon at major events, InterOp NY 2013 and others.
  • Virtual Overlays: In the enterprise portfolio, Cisco offers the Cloud Services Router (CSR 1000V) a virtual router that provides a full-fledged IOS-XE secure routing functionality to enable enterprises to easily extend into the cloud: private or public/hybrid clouds. With support for onePK and RESTful APIs, the CSR1000V offers programmability to virtual infrastructure that is consistent with the programmability for physical infrastructure. Just virtualizing a router is not the same as programmability or SDN, being able to provide programmatic access through APIs to gather network intelligence and allow for automated provisioning are what it means to adhere to the concepts of SDN.

 

With this high degree of support for Cisco ONE programmability and openness, the Enterprise portfolio is continually adding open access to new products and old providing strong investment protection.

OK, so now it is clear how Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture and the Cisco Enterprise portfolio fit into the overall Cisco ONE solutions. What are the additional benefits that Enterprises can expect with the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture? How is ONE + ONE = 6?

I will cover these 6 benefits and the new Enterprise programmability math: ONE + ONE = 6, in the next blog.

 

Thanks for reading and please comment on any and all aspects. I look forward to your comments. Stay tuned for the next blog post.

 

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