Neil Diener and Walt Shaw, the leaders behind Cisco Clean Air technology, are pretty humble when it comes to talking about their innovative contributions at Cisco. But there is no hiding their passion for their work and the impact it has on the industry. Learn more about Diener, Shaw and Cisco Clean Air technology here!
I don’t know about you , but I want to be well prepared for the March 30th Cisco announcement
Listening to Cisco SVP Bill Brownell’s invitation, we can definitely expect some very interesting product news, but more importantly a new round of conversations about the right fabric-infrastructure, especially in the context of cloud computing.
That’s why we will have special guests such as John McCool, Soni Jiandani and Tim Gillis in addition of Forrester Research and IDC (see my previous blog)
So as I was willing to be well prepared, I found this interesting blog from Ivan about data center fabric architecture , which obviously grabbed also the attention of some of our smart engineers
Following my last blog post , I have gotten a number of questions on how we specifically define “fabric” so I thought I’d dig into that a bit more with this post. So, the primarily point is that our definition of fabric it built around a specific set of features and capabilities. It is not tied to specific products or topology. Again, we think it’s important that our customers have choice and not have an arbitrary architecture foisted upon them.
At its most basic level, a fabric is a highly available, high performance shared infrastructure built with integrated, intelligent compute, storage and network nodes that can be rapidly and simply organized around the requirements of a given workload.
We see this fabric as having six specific characteristics:
Open -- based on open standards
Integrated -- breaks down traditional silos with a more holistic approach
Flexible -- allows customers architectural flexibility and choice
Scalability -- easily grows and adapts as the data center evolves
Sometimes, progress necessitates that we look at things in an entirely new light. To paraphrase Star Trek—if you want to do something groundbreaking, sometimes you have to go boldly where no one has gone before.
Against that backdrop, I wanted to dispel a recent rumor in the marketplace that Cisco has gone (warp drives engaged, presumably) to a place called “Planet Zircon” to sell its industry-first and industry-leading Unified Computing System (UCS).
Leaving aside for a moment that some of our competitors seem to be living in an alternate universe, UCS is actually selling quite well right here on planet Earth. Our architecture for the virtualized data center, whereby via UCS we unify servers, storage access, networks, and virtualization technologies to drive the value of data center infrastructure to an entirely new level, has gained acceptance from a great number of earthly companies.
But since we’re having fun with science fiction metaphors, let’s suppose you were a time traveler who went back to sneak a peek as Cisco first began developing UCS. You might be forgiven for thinking that Cisco had taken leave of its senses. But leaving planet Earth? No, our feet were firmly planted here.
“Fabric computing is a fixture on the radar screen of many IT groups, driven by the increased penetration of virtualization and prospects for cloud computing.As virtualization penetration increases, IT organizations will deploy virtual machine (VM) mobility, which will demand more attention to a fabric-based infrastructure that better integrates server, storage and networking for greater agility and faster time to deploy.” Based on this observation, Gartner George J Reiss and Andrew Butler organized recently a survey to evaluate which vendors are the most credible and ready to address the challenges of virtualization and cloud computing.
Cisco pioneered the vision of Ethernet-based “Unified Fabric” for the data center and has been shipping products to support that vision for over three years. Subsequently it introduced Unified Computing and Unified Network Services, all of which have formed the building blocks for Cisco’s Data Center Fabric. Competitors have validated Cisco’s vision by scrambling to deliver their own versions of the Fabric.
On March 30th starting at 9:00 am PST, Cisco executives and experts , partners and customers will supplement this Fabric vision and showcase its evolution, while bringing multiple proof points to bear. And in a pure Cisco spirit, to enrich a very open conversation, we invited the Senior Analyst Andre Kindnesss from Forrester Research who wrote recently about “The Dark Horse In The Datacenter Fabric Race?” and the Program VP Data Center Network Services Cindy Borovick from IDC to share their vision.
If you want to be among (or amongst) the first to know what’s cooking at Cisco, this is your chance ! This event will be live and we hope to hear from you.