As we start off this New Year, how about including a resolution to improve application delivery? In Best Practices for Application Delivery in Virtualized Networks – Part I , we covered key application delivery challenges that have come up due to the complexities of managing the many types of applications that enterprises use today, and further complicated by data center consolidation and virtualization. We then covered some best practices, courtesy of Dr. Jim Metzler’s 2011 Application Service Delivery Handbook, which recommended taking a lifecycle approach to planning and managing application performance.
A key step to the lifecycle approach is to implement network and application optimization tools, such as WAN Optimization solutions and Application Delivery Controllers, including server load balancers. Of course, these solutions are not new to the market and already address many of the needs that exist with delivering enterprise applications in virtualized data centers – namely, the need to ensure network reliability, availability and security for users accessing these applications. In this post, we will discuss a recent study by IDC, where IT decision makers across Europe and the US spoke out about their strategies for using server load balancers to deal with emerging challenges.
. What important attributes do you look for in your server load balancers?
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Tags: ACE, application control engine, application delivery, application delivery controller, application performance, availbility, Cisco OTV, cloud bursting, data center security, DWS, Dynamic Workload Scaling, enterprise application, IDC, jim metzler, load balancer, Load Balancing, network optimization, Network Services, Nexus 7000, OTV, Overlay Transport Virtualization, resiliency, security, server load balancer, server load balancing, Tina Feng, Unified Network Services, virtual machine intelligence, virtual network services, virtualization
One of the things I admire about Cisco marketing, and I think generates a lot of respect for us from our customers, is how we approach competitive marketing. Most importantly, we hardly ever do it. Sure, we arm our sales teams with specific comparison data, but it’s rare we feel the need to compare ourselves publically or to bash competitors. When you bash a competitor, it really only serves to give them credibility, and highlights that they must be doing something important to occupy your mindshare, or that of your customer’s. Occasionally though, we are faced with not only having to take the gloves off a little more, but responding to the inevitable FUD that gets thrown our way.
This brings us to a blog post written by HP about Cisco’s Virtual Security Gateway (VSG), which unfortunately contains a number of inaccuracies and misrepresentations of our product that we have to clear up.
Let’s start with this example:
Cisco has a product called the Virtual Security Gateway (VSG) for the Nexus 1000V Series. It is a virtual firewall that lets you enforce policy and segmentation virtual environments. All associated security profiles are configured to include trust-zone definitions and access control lists (ACLs) or rules. They also support VM mobility when properly configured. If there’s one thing the company is good at, it is those good-old ACLs developed back in the early 90s!
The strength of VSG’s firewall capabilities is its awareness of the virtual machine environment, and specifically the ability to write firewall rules based on the attributes of the virtual machine, attributes such as the NAME of the VM. This gives tremendous power to establish policies in virtual environments, such as logically isolating tenants running on the same machine, or separating VMs based on operating system or application type in virtual desktop environments, a use case I wrote about earlier. To imply VSG is enforcing good-old ACL’s from the 90’s is disingenuous at best. Read More »
Tags: ASA, data center security, Nexus 1000v, Virtual Security Gateway, vsg
Clouds are popular. It’s not just because of cloud computing, you know. I was amazed to see people in St. Cloud, Minnesota talk about how much they enjoyed a new kind of cloud beds. In the computing world, businesses and organizations are fully embracing virtualization. Customer deployments show that you can easily install ten (10) or more virtual machines (VMs) on a physical host. For example, Drilling Info, Inc, a fast growing company in Texas, is currently running about 70 VMs on 3 Cisco UCS blades. Such dramatic footprint reduction plus business agility and additional energy, administration and networking savings are powerful reasons to drive IT data center consolidation. The City and County of San Francisco, for instance, has a distributed infrastructure consisting of 40 data centers and server rooms. They are currently in a process to consolidate into a fully virtualized data center.
Since virtualization is widely considered to be a precursor to private cloud computing, does the success so far mean that the road to cloud computing is free and clear?
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Tags: data center security, private cloud, virtualization security