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Announcing the MSI on Cisco Jabber (Part 2)

July 30, 2012 at 9:00 am PST

In the first part of this blog, I discussed some of the challenges faced by network administrators and how the Cisco Jabber team has integrated their client with the Cisco Media Services Interface (MSI) to enable Cisco to provide an end to end solution to these problems. In this part of the blog, I discuss the impact and benefits of the Cisco Jabber and WebEx integrations into the Medianet architecture (especially for network devices that support Media Awareness), features such as MS Proxy, and the overall benefits to desktop clients.

So what does this mean for network devices that do support media awareness? The first impact is around performance management. Network devices are able to add this information to Netflow/IPFix records. Increasingly, network administrators are using Netflow/IPFix as the primary source of data to enable performance management. Netflow provides records of every flow that passes through the device and records the amount of packets sent, bandwidth consumed etc. Recently the ability to monitor the performance of these flows has been added to Netflow so now an administrator is able to match flows to performance data to determine whether the network is able to deliver the service these applications need. By adding metadata to these records the administrator can now distinguish between the various applications and media types, opening up the prospect for detailed reporting on performance and capacity down to a level of granularity that has never been possible in the past.

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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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Smarter endpoints and smarter network: An end to end Medianet becomes a reality!

April 25, 2011 at 9:12 am PST

Finally it’s here. Cisco has been working on integrating the Media Services Interface (MSI) into the WebEx Meeting Client.

For those unfamiliar with the MSI, it’s an SDK developed to enable applications to interact with a Cisco Medianet. One of the long standing challenges IT organizations have faced has been to harmonize the needs of applications and endpoints with the network services required to meet those needs. It’s been a case of ships in the night as network administrators have done their best to deliver services while having limited interaction with the endpoints and applications that leverage those services. Asking endpoints and applications to consistently implement all the networking protocols to enable them to leverage the network has often led to mixed results; inconsistent or incomplete protocol stack implementations led to interoperability issues with the burden usually falling on the end customer.

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