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Announcing the MSI on Cisco Jabber (Part 1)

July 23, 2012 at 4:29 pm PST

Cisco recently announced the availability of the Cisco Jabber for Windows client which now supports the Cisco Media Services Interface (MSI). This is Cisco Jabber’s first step towards integration into the medianet architecture and along with similar support within the WebEx meeting client will have a profound effect on how customers can manage Quality of Service (QoS) for desktop video enabled applications.

Today, one of the most common issues which prevent a wide scale deployment of desktop video clients is the lack of visibility and control that the network administrators have over these deployments. Unlike video conferencing or telepresence units that are invariably in the same place, desktop clients by their very nature move around and can pop up just about anywhere: Inside and outside of the enterprise, connected via VPN or wireless and, of course, they are mobile enough to appear in different offices unannounced. Given that network administrators are charged with delivering acceptable application performance across their network infrastructure, the uncontrolled deployment of desktop video can be a real nightmare. Is the network ready to support the potentially large numbers of concurrent desktop video sessions? What happens if too many sessions are concentrated in a site with limited or oversubscribed bandwidth? How do I protect my existing revenue generating applications from the impact of bandwidth hungry video applications? It is no wonder that it is the network administrator who typically ends up being the roadblock to deployment, given the lack of tools by which to do capacity planning, performance monitoring/management, and, of course, traffic engineering to protect the experience.

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Expanding Business Video: What IT thinks about

Business video projects are highly visible and, if well planned, can showcase the strategic value of IT to your organization. Many organizations plan to eventually adopt multiple Business Video tools, such as:

  • Telepresence for collaboration, interviewing, and sharing centralized experts with customers;
  • Conferencing for team meetings and customer training;
  • Digital signage for advertising and employee news; and,
  • Internal web portals for training videos on demand.

When you begin considering just how using video in these ways can transform your business, it is important to understand the impact it will have on IT.  Engaging with a strong service partner like Cisco will help you to identify the architectural considerations as you plan, build and manage these projects. Read More »

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A new Application recognition paradigm – Flow metadata (Part 2)

In the first part of this blog we discussed how Flow Metadata addresses encrypted/obfuscated traffic, multi-stream interactions, ensures end-to-end  consistent policies and enables fine-grained policies. In this part of the blog, we discuss additional deployment scenarios making network classification a real challenge and how metadata addresses them.

Deployment Challenges

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A new Application recognition paradigm – Flow metadata (Part 1)

Flow metadata allows an application to explicitly signal any arbitrary attributes to the network from node to node. This avoids the pitfall of data not being visible for deep packet inspection due to increasing use of encryption and obfuscation.

Tradition network classification solution using deep packet inspection technology is localized as classification may not be available along the path. How can network element enforce policies if they do not have uniform view of traffic to apply consistent enforcement of network policies ? Flow Metadata is reusable across network nodes by allowing sharing of flow attributes amongst network nodes. This allows appropriate and consistent policies to be applied at each hop, end to end, improving the quality of experience.

The flow metadata component of medianet allows the application to convey information to a set of network nodes. This makes it easy for management software to report information in a more meaningful way.  For example, “John from finance is having quality issues with his Jabber desktop video” is much easier to diagnose than obscure IP addresses and protocol numbers. Imagine  extending  this meaningful application context information to network policies such as QoS, routing, and  SLAs.  The medianet flow metadata feature enables granular policies based on application context and not limited to network attributes. For example, with flow metadata, it is now possible to easily prioritize scheduled sessions over ad hoc sessions. 

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New Unified Communications Features Add Power and, Flexibility to Cisco Personal Telepresence Systems

This week at InfoComm, we unveiled enhancements to the Cisco TelePresence EX Series as a result of a stronger alignment with the Cisco Unified Communications(UC) portfolio. We added a number of UC features, enhanced security, and enabled intelligent network functionality to create an even more flexible, powerful and reliable desktop telepresence solution for knowledge workers and executives. These enhancements are made possible through the TE 6.0 software update, which affect the EX60 and EX90endpoints,and will be available in late Q3CY12 to customers with existing service agreements. 

With the expanded capabilities of TE 6.0, we believe the EX Series secures its place as the market-leading personal telepresence products and will enable users to experience superior video and voice collaboration with colleagues, partners and customers. The new software integrates the EX Series more closely with the Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) to enable high-value telephony and UC features, including the following: 

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