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Interview with Citrix on the Benefits of NetScaler Integration with Nexus 7000 and RISE

April 3, 2014 at 5:00 am PST

It’s been a busy week at Interop in Las Vegas so far, and we’re getting a lot of interest in our new Remote Integrated Services Engine (RISE) technology for the Nexus 7000 Series switches, which Cisco unveiled earlier this week. RISE integrates service appliances attached to Nexus 7000 Series switches as if the appliance was directly connected to the switch backplane, as if it were a dedicated service module. Cisco RISE establishes a communication path between the network data plane and the service appliance, simplifying deployments and optimizing data paths with better traffic visibility within the data center.

Recently, I had a chance to sit down with Steve Shah, Citrix Senior Director of Product Management to talk about why they were the first to integrate with RISE technology, and what benefits it has for their NetScaler customers.

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New Remote Integrated Services Engine (RISE) Enhances L4-7 Appliance Integration with Nexus 7000 Series

March 31, 2014 at 4:00 am PST

Remote Integrated Service Engine (RISE) is a new protocol being added to the Nexus 7000 and 7700 platforms through NX-OS (software upgradeable to existing devices), that integrates service appliances to be attached to Nexus 7000 Series switches with the same benefits as if the appliance was directly connected to the switch backplane, as if it were a dedicated service module. Cisco RISE establishes a communication path between the network data plane and the service appliance, simplifying deployments and optimizing data paths with better traffic visibility within the data center.

RISE Logical View

RISE allows a physical services appliance to be connected to the Nexus 7000 switch as if it was directly connected to the chassis backplane, providing greater traffic visibility and optimization, with simplified connectivity

Initially, Citrix NetScaler Application Delivery Controllers (ADC) and the Cisco Prime Network Analysis Module (NAM) are the first services appliances that have integrated with RISE, and have been tested and Certified as “RISE-enabled”. With the announcement of RISE, we expect to develop an ecosystem of partners that will work with Cisco to take advantage of this technology, including other application services vendors and firewalls.

The service appliances (e.g., Citrix NetScaler and Cisco Prime NAM) are directly attached by standard network cable to RISE-configured ports on the Nexus 7000 Series switches in a typical virtual Port Channel (VPC) deployment. Appliances can also be attached in indirect mode through any switched (Layer 2) network. Either scenario (direct or indirect connection) allows for device and data path redundancy for fault tolerance.

There are several management advantages to connecting service nodes through RISE. First, RISE can be configured through the Nexus management console or management platform. However, the specific service appliance features are still configured using the existing device management tools.  This ensures separation of duties between the networking and security or application teams, as well as eliminating any additional management complexity from the RISE connection.

Joe Weber“RISE offers a unique ability to tightly couple Nexus 7000 Series switches and Service Appliances within the Data Center.  We believe that this integration will provide the business agility from an operational and deployment perspective that Data Center engineers have been looking for to reduce the time it takes to instantiate new or modify existing services.  Data-path optimization through the use of Auto-PBR (Policy Based Routes) will relieve the need for manual modifications during add/moves/changes and improve network traffic visibility for the Security/Server administrator.”  — Joe Weber, Technical Solutions Architect, World Wide Technology

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Cisco Data Center at Interop 2014 – Rebecca’s Keynote, Best of Interop Finalist, Customer Luncheon and many more

Finally, Interop 2014 is around the corner and Las Vegas is heating up belying the wintry conditions as I step out of the airport. Two weeks ago, two of our flagship Cisco ACI products, Cisco Nexus 9516 and the Cisco APIC (Application Policy Infrastructure Controller) both were selected as Best of Interop 2014 finalists. Winners will be announced April 1.

On  April 2nd, at 8.30 AM, Cisco CIO Rebecca Jacoby gives her  keynote on the Internet of Everything. Do not miss the opportunity to learn from a CIO’s point of view how to unlock business value through intelligent connections among people, processes, data and things.

At 12.45 PM Cisco hosts a grand Customer Luncheon. The luncheon features a live panel session comprising leading technology executives from cisco, its partner companies, and customers. If you are not going to be present at Interop, we have a live webcast you can register to attend.

At 4 PM, we have a lively vendor tech session at Mandalay Bay L, where top-notch Cisco ACI subject matter experts Allen Kluender and Brenden Buresh present the evolution of Data Center networking with Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI). The session features an interactive customer experience sharing and gives all attendees a chance to ask questions and share their perspectives on ACI.

The Expo floor houses Cisco Booth #1327, where we showcase many state-of-art Demos and Theater presentations, and specifically from a Cisco ACI standpoint, we have three key demo stations featuring customers’ current care-abouts and priorities such as how ACI integrates with OpenStack, dynamic L4-7 Services chaining with ACI and Nexus 9000 Programmability.

InteropsignageInteropcrowd

 

There is lot more on the menu from Cisco Data Center standpoint, including Multi-Hypervisor capable Nexus 1000V solutions, Dynamic Fabric Automation with Nexus 7k and the UCS advantage for your enterprise applications.  Also, check out the Nexus 7000 demo, that showcases a new feature RISE (Remote integrated services engine), that in the initial phase, integrates Citrix Netscaler and Cisco NAM (Network Analysis Module) as dedicated service modules to the switch backplane. Our product experts are eager to meet you and walk you through the details. We also have white-boards to engage you at a more detailed architectural level, if you like, so do not miss out on this exciting opportunity.

Related links:

Best of Interop Finalist -- Meet Nexus 9516 The new big, bad boy of Nexus 9000 Family 

Best of Interop Awards : Cisco APIC and Nexus 9516 Switch Selected as Finalists

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…And The Momentum Continues! New Nexus Data Center Innovations AND Customer Deployments!

You probably have already heard that during CiscoLive Milan, we have unveiled the new additions to our Data Center and Cloud networking portfolio:

New Nexus Switches

  • New Nexus 7706 and a high density F3 Series 1/10G module for Nexus 7700 provide increased deployment options for data center interconnect, core or aggregation.
  • The next generation Nexus 5600 family offers VXLAN bridging and routing capability, line rate L2/L3, and 40G uplinks, to deliver high performance in a compact form factor for 10G Top of Rack, 1/10G FEX aggregation deployments.
  • New Nexus 6004 Unified Port LEM Module brings industry’s highest UP port density in a four RU form factor simplifying LAN and SAN convergence.
  • New Nexus 3172TQ top of rack 1 RU switch delivers industry-first 1/10G BaseT copper server access and superb performance combined with robust NX-OS features.
  • New Nexus 1000V on the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) hypervisor brings OpenStack cloud a fully integrated network virtualization solution that can be deployed consistently across VMware, Microsoft, and Linux based software platforms.

AND THERE HAS BEEN BROAD CUSTOMER ADOPTION ACROSS THE DATA CENTER! 

Data Center Nexus Networking Momentum

From Nexus 1000V to the Nexus 9000, Cisco’s holistic approach resonates with customers because it provides increased business agility, operational efficiency, and empowers IT to rapidly evolve as business requirements change.

Here are the latest examples of why our customers chose Nexus:

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Cisco Live Milan 2014: Where Hi-Tech meets Fashion and Tradition

I am neither an AC Milan soccer fan nor a connoisseur of haute couture, so it will be no surprise if you wondered what I am doing in Europe’s fashion capital Milan, and that too in the middle of Milan’s wintry January.

Without further ado, I will break the suspense.  Yes, I am one of the few, chosen as Cisco Datacenter leads for the Cisco Live Milan event. You may be thinking I have the best job in Silicon Valley, as I hop from Melbourne to London to Milan to cover Cisco Live worldwide, over the years. You are right, I do have an enviable job, bringing together the best of cisco datacenter technologies that help customers achieve more value for their investment, and I also make sure to have some fun in the process. During this event, I will be bringing you real-time excerpts of the action in the show floor, via social media. In this blog, I want to provide all you Datacenter IT and Networking professionals, highlights of various activities we have on the menu.

Milan

If like me you are fortunate to attend, I am sure you are looking forward to attend the wall-wall keynotes on Jan 28, hosted by Cisco Executives Rob Lloyd and Rob Soderbery. Rob Lloyd will discuss how Cisco and the ecosystem of Cisco’s partners are uniquely positioned to connect the unconnected with an open standard and an integrated architecture from the cloud to end devices In addition,  you’ll have the opportunity to check out the latest innovations in Cisco ACI and Data Center Networking technologies. Let us pick up action at the Cisco Campus and Datacenter area in the World of Solutions.

CAMPUS OVERVIEW 06

Cisco ACI demos are at the center of all action in Datacenter switching. .These demos in particular highlight the growing significance of Cisco as a datacenter infrastructure provider. With the successful introduction of Cisco ACI and its seamless integration with Cisco UCS, FlexPod, vBlock, UCS Director etc, we are able to demonstrate why infrastructure matters and its relevance to applications. I strongly encourage you to check out the Cisco ACI-Open Stack demo that highlights the provisioning and orchestration of a multi-tenant cloud environment and virtual applications through Open Stack, as well as showing integration of Open Stack on top of the Cisco APIC interface. Many of you have been eagerly awaiting the integration of L4-L7 services from Citrix, F5 with Cisco APIC, and we have put together a demo that illustrates the set-up and insertion of multiple network services into an application network, and the routing of traffic to the required services and the virtual workload. Other ACI demos include those that showcase Cisco Nexus 9000 platform programmability and Cisco ACI integration with Hyper-v, but in the interest of time, I will let you discover the exciting details of these demos at your convenience. Besides ACI, we have Unified Fabric based demos focusing on Nexus 7k and Dynamic Fabric Automation, VXLAN integration with Nexus switching platforms etc, to illustrate the comprehensive portfolio of switching products from Cisco. You will not be disappointed at the demo floor as the best and brightest engineers from Cisco business units will be available to engage you in technical conversations.

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