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Cisco’s Internet Router in Space

Brad Boston, Cisco Senior Vice President in the Global Government Solutions Group, discusses the recent milestones in Cisco’s Internet Router in Space program, including the first-ever software upgrade of an Internet Protocol router aboard a commercial satellite while in orbit, as well as completing the industry’s first VoIP call made without the use of any terrestrial infrastructure to route the call.

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International Borderless Young Thing

I’m going to date myself here, but when the Berlin Wall came down I was lucky enough to go over to Berlin and trade smokes through holes with the East German guards on the other side. I have a piece of the wall, a chunk of cement with paint on it, somewhere. CNN was disruptive new media, mobile phones cost $1400 and you could talk on them for $1/minute. The Internet was a curiosity for academic and government use; many mail servers were run as open relays and a good dialup modem would get you 14,000 bps. Networks were simpler too, for the most part you were either inside the building and on the network or you were not on the network. Work was both a place and a verb.

The British pop band Jesus Jones captured perfectly the zeitgeist of those days with the song “International Bright Young Thing” which I first heard in a friend’s apartment in Kyoto. The refrain “Right here, right now, there’s no other place I would rather be,” seemed so perfect, so right.

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Flexibility Does Not Equal Complexity

Recently, SearchNetworking posted an interesting article titled “NetFlow v9 is powerful, so why isn’t anyone using it?” Shamus discusses many of the benefits of NetFlow v9:  deeper visibility into application traffic flows and application performance, and the ability to use NetFlow to consolidate and enhance other network management functions.  However, he ends on a sour note:  “but the technology is more complex to learn than the good old reliable v5.  Still enterprises will eventually be forced to make the transition.”

In his article, Shamus points out that customers may feel intimidated by the complexity of NetFlow v9.  I’d like to address this concern with a response.   If you are of my generation, you will no doubt remember carbureted automobile engines.

Maybe you or your dad spent Saturday afternoons tinkering with one in the garage, or maybe you were just caught off-guard when one morning the car wouldn’t start.  Netflow v5 is a lot like a carbureted engine:  it is very common, anyone familiar with it knows how it works, and it is easy to set-up.  Now, let’s fast-forward to the current generation of technology.

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Cloud Ready WAN Optimization Solution with the New Cisco WAAS 4.3.1

Cisco WAAS Business Unit is excited to announce the general availability of WAAS 4.3.1 release!

The new Cisco WAAS 4.3.1 includes virtual WAAS (vWAAS) integrated with Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) and Cisco Nexus 1000V, provides uniform WAAS central management to the WAAS Express devices and improved optimizations for Cloud (SaaS) applications like Microsoft Office 365 (BPOS -- Business Productivity Online Standard Suite).

Cisco vWAAS enables the transition to public and private clouds and is a key proof point in the Cisco Unified Network Services (UNS) pillar, a central part of the Cisco Data Center Business Advantage architecture. UNS includes Virtual WAAS (vWAAS), Virtual Security Gateway (VSG) and future services integrated with Nexus 1000V and UCS that differentiates Cisco’s cloud architecture while enabling a gradual transition from physical to virtualized environments.

Cisco WAAS Express extends the WAAS portfolio by offering a cost-effective IOS-based Cisco WAN optimization in the next generation Integrated Service Router -- ISR G2 routers.  WAAS Express, WAAS on SRE (Service Ready Engine) on ISR G2, and WAAS appliances interoperate seamlessly as part of the Cisco Borderless Networks architecture.  Customers and/or Partners can take advantage of Year-End-Sprint offer as part of the router refresh program.

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Challenges in Deploying IP Video based Applications – Part 3: Quality

November 24, 2010 at 8:27 am PST

Higher quality in video is obtained by using higher resolutions, more colors (increased bits per pixel), spatial audio (multiple audio channels and higher sampling rates), and multiple displays. All of these parameters increase demand for bandwidth — in turn increasing the sensitivity to degraded network conditions.

With video, when the impairments become apparent, the experience of the session deteriorates very quickly. Users are easily disturbed by poor video quality — and the bandwidth burden of video means that even slight deterioration of services within the network can significantly affect the video experience. Similarly, with video, the accompanying audio experience must be satisfactory and synchronization with the video must be consistent — and even more stringent requirement.

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