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Why Mulkey Engineers Switched from Riverbed to Cisco WAAS

Have you ever been behind the wheel of your car moving at 5 mph? Visualize this: as I wait patiently for my turn to merge onto Interstate 880 N, based on the honor system because there is no meter, a brightly colored Fiat rolls by on the left shoulder. A few seconds later, a Smart Car inches up and squeezes itself between my car and the narrow right shoulder passing me as well. The Smart Car has a bumper sticker that says “Please don’t hit me. I’m not sure about my coverage.” Hmm…

Now that you’re probably done giggling at my experience, let’s analyze the scenario above. Designing a network of highways takes a lot. A smart highway system not only reduces congestion and prevents collision, but also provides expedient information, such as signage and speed sensors, to improve driver response times. Civil engineers consider more than just current traffic and road conditions when they design highway systems. They also consider how to scale for the future, taking into account urbanization, seasonal factors, and future uncertainties such as mini cars. Sound familiar?

Many of the design and management considerations for an Internet wide area network—such as bandwidth management, application response time, and centralized control—are similar to highway system design.

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Journey to Cisco Live San Diego

Recently, I heard a beautiful Beethoven Quartet Opus 131 piece played in an office not too far from mine. Its rhythm was so tranquil that the notes visually sang in my ears and brought up images of Ike sitting behind Cisco WAAS Central Manager listening to classical music on his headphones. (“Who is Ike?” You may ask. On the surface, Ike is your everyday IT guy that wins the girl’s heart in Ike wins with a vendor you can trust.  Behind the scene, Ike is the hero that keeps productivity high and end-user satisfied, all working together, to propel his organization ahead of the competition.)

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Do You Know the Fundamentals of WAN Optimization?

“Remember the days of measuring bandwidth by the Baud?1

The awesome guys at TechwiseTV just made a really fun videoWatch the video to see "What the heck is this?" on understanding the Fundamentals of WAAS (Wide Area Application Services), Cisco’s WAN Optimization technology. They start off with the basics – what you need to think about for WAN Optimization – and finish up with where the technology is going.

“Hold onto your keyboards because this is where it really gets cool.”

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New Virtual Desktop Solutions Enable High-Quality Voice and Video

Did you know that the hosted virtual desktop market is expected to reach 15 percent of the worldwide enterprise desktop and laptop market by 2014? That means over the next few years, more and more of your customers will be looking to deploy virtual desktops using a solution that is scalable, reliable, and secure. With new products from Cisco and Citrix, you can equip your customers with the best desktop virtualization experience.

Today Cisco has unveiled the next phase of its Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI), enabling an uncompromised virtual desktop experience. Endpoints that are now available enable high-quality voice and video in virtual desktop environments.

Additionally, through a strategic alliance, Cisco and Citrix will improve virtual desktop end user experiences by offering solutions that ease the deployment of high-definition virtual desktops over a highly secure, “Citrix optimized” Cisco network.  Cisco Wide Area Application Services (WAAS) has been optimized for Citrix XenDesktop to  help your customers reduce the bandwidth necessary to deploy desktops virtually over wide area networks (WAN), enabling better scalability and optimal end-user collaboration experiences.

Here are additional details about what’s new:

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Unified Network Services Spotlight on NAM

May 4, 2011 at 11:28 am PST

Unified Network Services (UNS) is the portfolio of L4-7 network services and data center security products within the Data Center Business Advantage architecture. This week’s UNS spotlight is on Cisco’s Network Analysis Module (NAM), which provides network administrators deep visibility into network traffic and applications to help ensure consistent and cost-effective delivery of service to end users.

NAM is the foundation for establishing and verifying quality of service (QoS) policies, undertaking WAN optimization projects, and rolling out voice over IP (VoIP). It can also detect when configuration changes inadvertently degrade application performance, and provides clear insight towards rapid remediation. Consistent with many other UNS portfolio products, the NAM product family includes integrated service modules, virtual service blades and stand-alone appliances offering deployment flexibility and consistent performance visibility from the branch to the data center.

As a proof point of Cisco’s unified L4-7 service offerings, NAM offers end-to-end application performance visibility for Cisco Wide-Area Application Services (WAAS) deployments to help maximize your WAN acceleration efforts. NAM can help identify candidate sites and applications that will benefit the most with WAN optimization while quantifying and validating the impact of WAAS on application and network performance. The real-time visibility can also be used for ongoing optimization and troubleshooting performance degradation. The following graph shows the immediate impact of WAAS on transaction time for a particular application.

NAM WAAS graph

We are now offering a series of NAM Webinars to learn about Catalyst 6500 10G NAM-3 blade and new innovations in the latest Cisco Prime NAM software release 5.1. Register here. (Also, here is a short video on what’s new in the recent release of NAM software 5.1)

In addition, learn about the next-generation Catalyst 6500 NAM-3 blade to simplify operational manageability in Multi-Gigabit Ethernet deployments. Register Now – May 24 and May 25 We look forward to having you join us. 

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