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Where to learn ACI

I remember walking through Cisco Live last year in San Francisco and hearing all about ACI and the Cisco DevNet program. To be totally honest, I shrugged it off as just something that was trying to get hyped up and would not have any real impact on what I do.

Well…that has changed over the last year for me. What made it change? I guess a desire to learn and grow. I have also seen how learning to code is becoming very important to any IT position. There is a lot of power in the software layer and learning to harness that power is very important to be able to accomplish our jobs. So, with that in mind I have started to learn Python. Why python? I come from a scripting language background with my years as a Windows admin. I never jumped in with both feet, but I did enough to be dangerous. And learning to write code has always really interested me, I just didn’t have a good reason to do it. Now, with ACI and SDN showing promise and no longer buzz words to me I am going to dive in and learn. Read More »

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Are you ready for F5 Agility next week – Edinburgh gets ready to play host to this exciting event

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It is a back-back, double-header for me this weekend, as I head from an action-packed week in Orlando to exotic Edinburgh, Scotland for F5 Agility. F5 is Cisco’s premier partner and I can’t wait to be in the thick of action at the Edinburgh International Convention Centre next week. From “you are lucky to be there” to “WoWs”, I am fast becoming the envy of my friends at Cisco. For me personally, it is the second EMEA F5 Agility event, and last year I had a blast at the Bella Center, Copenhagen. These things aside, there is a lot for me to report about Cisco’s participation in this event.

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You probably know F5 recently announced a new CEO. F5’s incoming CEO Manny Rivelo in his keynote themed around “Innovate, Expand and Deliver”, will take you on a tour of current market trends, how F5 has grown in market momentum under John McAdam’s tenure, the evolution of the F5 Platform from simple load balancer to ADC to support Cloud based business models, the growing importance of enterprise security, recent F5 acquisitions, and last but not the least the growing eco-system of Partners. I recommend getting started with Manny’s keynote. Manny is also hosting invitation only roundtables to key verticals Retail and financial earlier in the morning, same day.  Following Manny, Dean Darwin, Marketing SVP of F5 will deliver F5’s forward looking vision.  Dean’s session aligns well with Manny’s keynote in that he will address how to Innovate and continue to be a thought leader, Expand business models (like As A Service) and Deliver customer satisfaction and financial excellence.

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There is plenty of excitement Cisco is bringing to this event centred around Cisco’s award winning SDN strategy, Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) .

Cisco Exec Shashi Kiran is joining F5 Exec Calvin Rowland and fellow Cisco Exec Patrick Schmidt in a panel session May 20. For those of you not familiar with ACI, this panel session is a great opportunity to learn how Cisco and F5 are expanding their partnership, how their combined thought leadership is advancing the SDN landscape, and customer successes and momentum experienced by Cisco ACI, F5’s BIG IP & BIG IQ in the marketplace. The panellists are seasoned industry experts and I promise it will be a treat to the attendees.

If you somehow missed the panel session, there is room to cheer. Shashi is hosting a breakout session the next day, May 21, 11.30 local time. What’s unique about this Breakout Session? Well, you will get to not only hear Shashi eloquently walk you through the role of Cisco ACI in today’s Application-Oriented Economy, but also see customers and partners join him on stage and share their success stories with ACI.  Shashi will discuss how emerging applications are placing huge demands on Data Center Infrastructure and how grossly unprepared they are to meet the same.  Shashi will then introduce Cisco ACI, an open, scalable, programmable SDN solution that helps address these infrastructure challenges. Shashi will illustrate how Cisco’s open architecture enables seamless integration of F5 into ACI’s policy framework and how the joint solution brings unprecedented agility and end-end L2-L7 accelerated application delivery. Shashi’s breakout as I said earlier, also features a unique Customer and Partner segment towards the end. Martin Lipka from Pulsant corporation and Stefaan Hinderyckx from Dimension Data will join Shashi on stage to share their ACI experiences. How often do you get this comprehensive experience in a breakout session, one that is devoid of a sales pitch.  Sounds great, doesn’t it?

That is not all. Cisco ACI brings you additional customer engagement opportunity in the solutions expo hall. We are featuring cool demos showcasing our joint solutions namely, ACI-BIG IP and ACI-BIG IQ on both May 20 and 21, during the entire duration of the expo hours. Stop by the Cisco demo booth to get a personal walk-through of our solution working. Our product experts are available to engage you in white-board type sessions and to compliment the demos, we also run short duration presentations in the Cisco theatre at periodic intervals. Should you desire, we are happy to meet you in 1-1 meetings, so let us know how we can enrich your experience at the event.

For all the hard work we all do at the event, there is plenty F5 offers to let us relax and enjoy. The evening event on May 20 allows attendees to step back to a time of knights and ladies, including one of Scotland’s most famous royals – Mary Queen of Scots.

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Agility attendees will have the ability to see all that the castle has to offer, from Mons Meg, one of the largest cannons in the world, to the huge collection of weapons and armoury in The Great Hall, the Stone of Destiny and the Royal Palace Crown Jewels. Network with your fellow attendees while enjoying tasty food and drink, entertaining music, knowledgeable guides, and more are awaiting you on Wednesday 20th May.

I am eager to see you all in Edinburgh next week. There are some useful links for you to check out before your visit on how Cisco ACI and F5 work together on the innovation front.

Visit www.cisco.com/go/acif5

 

 

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#CiscoChampion Radio S2|Ep 18. Securing ACI

CiscoChampion200PXbadge#CiscoChampion Radio is a podcast series by Cisco Champions as technologists. Today we’ll be talking about securing ACI with Cisco Technical Marketing Engineer Carly Stoughton.

Listen to the Podcast.

Learn about the Cisco Champions Program HERE.
See a list of all #CiscoChampion Radio podcasts HERE.
Ask about the next round of Cisco Champions nominations. EMAIL US.

Cisco SME
Carly Stoughton, @_vCarly, Cisco Technical Marketing Engineer

Cisco Champion Guest Hosts
Chris Nickl, @ck_nic, Cloud Infrastructure Architect
Michael Aossey, @aossey, Solutions Architect Read More »

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Looking for Action? Cisco ACI at Citrix Synergy 2015 or Disney World – or Both

What attracts me to Orlando In the hot and humid month of May this year? There are numerous synergies from the Disney World to Orlando’s pristine nature that enhances my experience there. But the one I am really looking forward to this year is the Citrix Synergy 2015, a premiere event for Cisco Data Center Professionals and its Customers and Partners. After a hiatus of two years, I am happy to be back at this event, this time leading the Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) strategy and showcase how ACI integrates with Citrix’s NetScaler, a market leading Application Delivery Controller (ADC) solution.

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The theme this year at the event centers around software-defined workplace and how it enables companies find new ways to work better. Cisco ACI aligns very well with this theme given that ACI is a market leading software defined networking (SDN) solution.

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Citrix Synergy Event 2015 is particularly exciting to me as our joint Cisco ACI and Citrix NetScaler solution has picked considerable customer momentum since its introduction into market last year. Woolworth, DU and several other top customers have given testimonials recently on their positive experiences with ACI-NetScaler joint solution, and I look forward to hearing more of these at this event. In addition, the visionary keynotes, technology training, access to industry’s top thought leaders and the customizable agenda and experience makes Citrix Synergy a valuable investment of my time year after year.

Where should you start? There is no better place than Mark Templeton’s keynote, to start the Synergy expereince. Mark kick-starts the proceedings on May 12 by sharing his unique perspectives on how Citrix is leading the transition to the “software-defined workplace” where true mobility transformation occurs, giving businesses and people new ways to work. Mark will cover areas of innovation across the Citrix portfolio, including product and solution updates with strategic partners like Cisco in virtualization, mobility, networking, cloud and more. Be ready for a few sneak peeks and surprises.

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After the keynote, the world of solutions beckons you with a  glittering collection of technology showcase from industry-leading vendors, and I want to welcome you to the Cisco booth #202 where it is action unlimited. This year we are offering solution demos and Mini-Theater presentations featuring Desktop virtualization, Networking and SDN, Mobility, and Cloud technologies to name the highlights.

 

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Cisco ACI – Citrix NetScaler joint solution features prominently at the Cisco demo Pod and the Mini Theater this year. Stop by our booth and get a live demo from our experts, and learn how to automate deployment of NetScaler L4-L7 services using ACI policy framework.  In fact, we can give you a modular walkthrough of the solution whether your interest centers around the ACI Fabric or Cisco APIC policy controller or Citrix NetScaler. In addition, we can provide you quick overview presentations at our Mini theater that runs round the clock. There will be daily presentations on the ACI-NetScaler joint solutions and I hope the theater experience will complement the insights you gain via demos. We also have white-boards to dive deeper into cross-architectural discussions, should you decide to explore further. There is never a dull moment at our Cisco booth this year as Cisco UCS with Citrix desktop virtualization, DAAS and Mobility demos offer a rich treat of latest in technology innovations from Cisco and its Partners. The Cisco Mini Theater also feature NetApp, Nimble and Nvidia partner presentations as Cisco and Citrix truly bring the best-of-breed solutions for different market segments so customers can choose specifically based on their Data Center needs.

There are other exciting engagement opportunities for you to explore ACI-NetScaler solution at the event.  Check out Session SYN 212, “Update on NetScaler and Cisco Integration” on May 13, 11 AM at the Valencia Ballroom A.  Raj Gulani, a power packed Citrix dynamo, will deliver this session and many of your questions about SDN, Application demands on infrastructure will get answered. So, I’d recommend this as a must-attend.

And my good friend Mike Brennan from my UCS marketing days is presenting at the Cisco sponsored session on the topic “Architecting your next generation workspace with Cisco & Citrix”. If you can spare an hour the afternoon of May 13, I’d suggest you attend this session in room W135B. Mike brings unique perspectives from a design and deployment perspective and has authored several Cisco CVDs on UCS-Citrix desktop virtualization solutions.  If you somehow have to miss this timeslot, Mike is doing another breakout on May 14 with Rob Briggs at the Citrix sponsored session on the topic, “Architecting Innovation with Cisco and Citrix”. There are also hands-on Labs, Geek sessions, and Citrix Innovation awards for attendees to take advantage of to get a broad experience.

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As I write this blog, I just learned that the Cisco APIC has been adjudged the “Best of Interop 2015” in the SDN category. It is very timely, and a fitting testimonial to compliment the rapid customer adoption of ACI.  Cisco ACI-Citrix NetScaler has gained significant market traction and several customers in process of deploying the joint solution.

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The Cisco ACI-Citrix NetScaler solution is a key pillar of the Cisco-Citrix strategic relationship. In the past year, the joint solution has recorded several milestones in the form of customer proof-points, customer deployments and endorsements and Open standards initiatives such as NSH and Opflex at the IETF. Citrix NetScaler is committed to a robust roadmap in evolving the solution with ACI and stay tuned for more news from us at future events.

In closing I want to touch on the entertainment scene.  A customer appreciation event is scheduled for Wednesday May 13, at the Howl at the Moon Piano Bar and we look forward to seeing you there. The final night party on May 14, is another Citrix specialty as we all unwind, connect with friends, and experience an exclusive night for Synergy attendees only at Universal Studios Florida. I look forward to meeting you all in person next week.

Related Links

www.cisco.com/go/acicitrix

www.cisco.com/go/aci

 

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Microsoft Integrated Infrastructure Solutions. Deploy, Deliver, and Scale with FlexPod and VSPEX

Like many of us I am in the wonderful city of Chicago on a warm sunny day preparing Cisco’s presence for Microsoft Ignite 2015. Starting Monday in booth #122 at McCormick Place we’ll be showcasing our leading solutions for the Microsoft stack.  Stop by if you are here!

Our Ignite focus will be on our core technologies: our UCS family for compute, the Nexus  portfolio for switching, and our industry leading integrated infrastructure solutions. In addition we will breakout some cool new Cisco technologies and solutions but you are going to have to wait until Tuesday morning to get that news!

Sunday Morning Booth Set-up and Prep

Sunday Morning Booth Set-up and Prep

 

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