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Autonomic Networking at Cisco Live Milano!

Welcome to Milano!

Wow, what an activity on the first day at the Cisco Campus / World of Solutions. It’s great to see all these people thirsty for knowledge, and all these people looking for intelligent solutions for their business needs.

One of those business needs is removing complexity from networks by making networks self-managing, or in other words Autonomic Networking.  2014 will be the year that we are shipping the first sets of functionality in this space, so that makes us really exited.  After all we have been working on this for more than 3 years internally, and its great to finally see the fruits of that hard work.

Michael has explained in his blog that Autonomics is all around us, but until now there wasn’t a solution that allowed other applications to leverage a common autonomic infrastructure.  Finally it is here!  The Autonomic Networking Infrastructure allows Service Providers to bootstrap new devices completely zero touch, in a secure fashion, without pre-staging the devices and/or a back-end DHCP Server, and this totally topology independent!  Just plug in the device, and watch it getting authenticated, receiving a Domain Certificate, joining the Autonomic Domain, and joining the Autonomic Control Plane, which provides indestructible IPv6 end-to-end connectivity!  If an mdns-enabled TFTP server is connected to the network, it will leverage the Autonomic Control Plane to announce its service, upon which the devices will pull in their configuration! Read More »

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Winning with Cisco Enterprise Networks at #CLEUR

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If you’re at CiscoLive Milan you have many opportunities to learn about our newest technology announcements.  But how well do you know our current technology?  If you know it well you could win a prize!  Stop by the Cisco Enterprise Networks booth to play the trivia challenge on one of the iPads behind the reception desk.  The trivia is 15 multiple choice questions from a bank of over 150 questions on our Enterprise Networks technologies -- including campus switching, branch routing and enterprise mobility.  Some questions are easy, and I think some will challenge you.

We will be drawing from the top winners on Wednesday afternoon and winners will be alerted via email.  Stop by the booth (Wed evening or Thursday) to claim your prize!  You can win an iPad, GoPro, or Kindle.

Enterprise App Game Location

Stop by the booth to play and download the app to track your progress!

Also, just for fun, I took a few pictures of tech around the Cisco Enterprise Networks and Cisco IoT booths -- can you name everything here?   Read More »

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Hands On with SDN in Milan

January 26, 2014 at 11:49 pm PST

Those of you who follow me know that one of the milestones I have for SDN is when we start turning those unicorns into plough horses.  While I don’t think we are quite there yet, the partner demos you can check out on the floor in Milan show that we are certainly moving the needle with SDN: Read More »

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Top Things to Know About DFA Before Cisco Live Milan

January 24, 2014 at 2:15 pm PST

Two weeks ago, I presented a webinar on Dynamic Fabric Automation (DFA) and went over the allocated 1 hour to cover the content.  Yesterday, as I was doing follow up with a hands-on demo, I went over time too. This illustrates how rich DFA is, and how much there is to say about it! Dynamic Fabric Automation is an environment for data center automation that is centered on the CPOM (Central Point of Management), a set of services that are provided with the new Data Center Network Manager (DCNM) release 7.0(1).

The services available on the CPOM provide the following:

  1. Power On Auto Provisioning (POAP)
  2. Inter-switch link connection verification
  3. A single console for configuration
  4. Network Auto-Config Profile provisioning
  5. Message processing for external orchestrator
  6. Automatic host provisioning
  7. Embedded management for network monitoring and data collection

All of these services are provided using standard protocols and applications. For example, the POAP service uses DHCP, TFTP and SCP/SFTP, but using a combination of templates and a very intuitive and easy-to-use GUI, DCNM provides a simplified and systematic way of bringing up your data center fabric. The inter-switch link validation or cable consistency check allows the operator to verify the fabric connections against a predefined template and prevent unexpected connections to come up.

The Jabber process provides the single console for configuration, statistics and troubleshooting. Using any XMPP client, an operator can “chat” with the fabric devices; this approach offers the possibility to organize devices in chat groups that match their role, their location or simply some administrative set. With XMPP, a single command can be sent to multiple devices in a secure way.

The most important element of the CPOM is certainly the network profile provisioning. Read More »

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Learn How to Build an Intelligent WAN at CiscoLive Milan

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Missing CiscoLive? Learn what’s new!

According to the Open Network User Group (ONUG), a consortium of IT leaders including Bank of America, Fidelity Investments, JP Morgan Chase, UBS, and Gap, among the top priorities to reduce network expenses was WAN management, coming it at #3

This should not be a surprise with the growth of bandwidth demands from cloud, mobility and rich media applications like video. In fact, 68% of IT decision makers expect their WAN demand to grow. However, few (1 of 4 IT organizations) will have addition budget to pay for it.

Next week, over 5000 IT leaders will be meeting at CiscoLive Milan to find out how to prepare their organization for the opportunities ahead, and build a next-generation network. One essential element is building out a next-generation WAN.

For attendees making their way to the show, here are few sessions and demonstrations to note in your show planner.
Read More »

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