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Making a Secure Transition to IPv6

Moving your network from IPv4 to IPv6 can be risky if you don’t close security holes

In February 2011, the last blocks of IPv4 Internet addresses were allocated, highlighting the need for organizations everywhere to plan their transition to IPv6, the next generation Internet protocol. Because the move to IPv6 is happening gradually, applications will support both Internet protocols for some time—and so must your network. During the transition from IPv4 to IPv6 your network could become vulnerable to new security risks, so it’s critical that you phase in the new protocol as securely as possible.

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10 Steps to a Successful IPv6 Implementation

September 8, 2011 at 2:24 pm PST

Robb, Sylvia, Jimmy Ray

C’mon…didn’t you guys just do an IPv6 show back in 2007?  Yes, and although many others have covered this ad-nauseum…(and we don’t run ads…) we thought it was high time we covered it TechWiseTV style…which means we got the details.

Watch it right now or keep reading for more details…

Specifically, we did not want to focus on big numbers or sky is falling stuff – its been done.  We wanted to cover the actual reality of implementation.

If scare tactics still get you going…you know we have now officially run out of IPv4 addresses so I do think this topic has a new feeling of urgency.

The time for making educated decisions on your IPv6 migration can no longer be put off.  Much has been learned about how to do this right and this one is all about asking the right questions and providing the right guidance.

Questions with the potential for long-term impact like:

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Cisco’s Catalyst 6500: Ready to embrace the next wave of networking challenges

As Mark Twain supposedly wrote, ‘rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated’ – a phrase that certainly rings true for Cisco’s Catalyst 6500.

With a raft of new innovations recently announced at Cisco Live, competitors that were struggling to catch-up with the last iteration of this flagship switch have now seen their goalposts shift yet again.

The latest innovations provide Catalyst 6500 customers with the capability to evolve their network infrastructure for the coming decade’s  proliferation of connected devices, growth of video traffic, cloud computing business models and increasingly mobile workforces—without requiring “rip and replace” upgrades.

So, once again, Cisco continues to deliver business-enhancing innovation and investment protection for its customers – and with a platform that many had wrongly assumed was dead. Amongst the enhancements announced were:

-          Yet another ‘industry first’ with seamless IPv4 and IPv6 support from the switch’s hardware platform
-          New network virtualisation capabilities
-          A comprehensive set of L4-7 integrated services modules and new application performance and visibility monitoring through a revamped implementation of NetFlow.

The real key though is the introduction of the highly anticipated Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series Supervisor Engine 2T, a 2-terabit card that unlocks 80 gigabits per second per slot, new feature-rich 10-gigabit and 10-Gigabit Ethernet line cards, and next-generation borderless services that provide customers with new mobility, security, network analysis and load balancing capabilities.

The new supervisor engine provides a threefold increase on throughput capability. It can also quadruple the number of devices or users that can connect to a network. For example, a single Catalyst 6500 can now support up to 10,000 mobile devices.

All new line cards and the 2 Tbps supervisor are compatible with all Cisco E-Series chassis models, offering minimal intervention to the existing Catalyst 6500 E-Series infrastructure. This compatibility prevents rip-and-replace upgrades that jeopardize a customer’s network uptime and require additional personnel, expenses and time.

The video below features Kumar Srikantan, Cisco’s VP of Marketing for the Scalable Networks Business Unit, as he talks about the latest updates to the Catalyst 6500, why Cisco and our customers are so excited about them and what it means for the broader industry.  Enjoy!

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Addressing the Service Provider Transition to IPv6: Carrier-Grade IPv6 Solution (Part 3 of 4)

The transition to IPv6 presents a complex technical challenge, and the business risks for not doing it right are potentially significant, in terms of impact on customer retention and growth, new business models, and competitive edge.

In this third installation of the series, Kelly Ahuja of Cisco and Ray Mota of ACG focus on Service Provider strategies for the transition to IPv6. As Kelly mentions, the Cisco Carrier-Grade IPv6 Solution (CGv6) is designed to help address both technical and business challenges associated with the transition. The Cisco CGv6 portfolio of IPv6 solutions enables service providers to:

  • Preserve investments in IPv4 infrastructure, assets, and delivery models
  • Prepare for the smooth, incremental transition to IPv6 services that are interoperable with IPv4
  • Prosper through accelerated subscriber, device, and service growth that are enabled by the efficiencies that IPv6 can deliver

It’s important to emphasize the word solution. CGv6 solution is not just a line card, or a network appliance, or a software feature. Unlike other companies Cisco has the experience and expertise to help network operators realize the promise of IPv6 by offering full Life Cycle Services Support. This is especially important as not all operators have experience in IPv6 or access to this expertise. Cisco can provide the people, processes and tools to ensure a seamless transition. Some of the capabilities our advanced services team provides include:

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Texas Lone Star Network Deploys the ASR 9000 for State-wide Services

Although well known for oil and cattle, Texas is home to many high technology companies (including the Cisco campus of yours truly), and is the largest clean energy (wind) producer in the USA. It’s also got a booming economy that needs advanced telecommunications services to all parts of the state. 

TLSN connects Cisco ASR 9000 Series routers with 10G optical wavelengths enabled in the Cisco DWDM backbone network

To that point, we recently talked with the team at Texas Lone Star Network (TLSN). Located just 50 miles northwest of  the capital of Austin, TLSN operates a Cisco DWDM fiber network spanning over 3000 route miles offering wavelength, Ethernet, and SONET services to its 39 consortium company members, national carriers, wireless carriers, regional cable TV operators, colleges and the federal government. Earlier in the year they made the decision to upgrade their network with a deployment of Cisco’s ASR 9000 Series routers.

TLSN has connected the new ASR 9000 routers with 10G optical wavelengths enabled in the Cisco DWDM backbone network. The enhanced network provides them the foundation for new, revenue generating services, including cloud computing, cell backhaul, and IP/MPLS virtual private networks. In particular, cell backhaul is expected to be a growth area because of the number of 4G deployments going on in Texas right now.

“With the rapid growth in customer demand for higher capacity , driven especially by video, mobile, and high speed data services, we had to scale our network, but we had to also watch our operational expenses. Leveraging our new Carrier Ethernet platform we’re able to offer new services cost effectively to our member companies and customers  to ensure that technologies such as telemedicine and distance learning are available to any community in the state. Plus, with our Texas-wide footprint we can offer both a wide range of highly available services coupled with a unique footprint that other providers can’t match.”
Brad Seymour, General Manager, TLSN

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