Our industry certainly loves its buzzwords. For a while, everything was about “virtualized this” and “virtualized that” in the data center. Then there is a current love affair with “cloud”. It seems the next hot buzzword might turn out to be fabric.
For Cisco, “fabric” in the data center has defined our data center strategy and vision for the last three years. With the introduction of the Cisco Nexus family in January 2008, we also announced the concept of Unified Fabric as a fundamental building block for the data center. We offered the simple vision of a single fabric to link all the network, compute and storage resources in a data center as a mechanism to not only reduce TCO but also improve agility and flexibility. Since then, we have released a steady flow of products and technologies to deliver on the promise of Cisco Unified Fabric by simplifying the infrastructure with convergence, improving its ability to handle virtual and physical scale and increasing the intelligence of the fabric to increase agility and lower operating costs.
While initially hesitant, customers and industry experts are beginning to see the merits of Cisco’s vision, especially in the age of virtualization and cloud. Meanwhile, other vendors in the marketplace are left to play catch-up. In a November 4, 2010 independent report titled “Q&A: Networking Landscape, Q4 2010” Forrester Research, Inc. commented that:
“To Cisco’s credit, it saw the data center evolution way before any other networking vendor and started to build a set of products and solutions directed at a converged and virtual world.”- Forrester Research, Inc.
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Tags: cloud, data center, forrester, Gartner, nexus, Unified Fabric, virtualization
As server virtualization continues its takeover, increasing attention is being paid to how we connect all those virtual machines as they zoom around the data center. Because server virtualization breaks the one application/one server model, new tools are necessary to facilitate operations and management. Additionally, the fact that workloads are now mobile introduces new challenges.
Over the years, we have released a number of industry firsts for virtual machine networking, including the Nexus 1000V virtual switch for VMware vSphere, OTV to support inter-DC workload mobility, and FabricPath to better support VM-networking in the data center.
There seems to be a lot of confusion out there regarding the technologies and standards related to access layer technologies, so, for this post, I wanted to dig into the VM-networking and where the related IEEE standards are going. Specifically, I am going to look at our old friend 802.1Q and two emerging standards: 802.1Qbg Edge Virtual Bridging and 802.1Qbh Bridge Port Extension.
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Tags: Data Center Business Advantage, nexus, standards, virtualization
I’ve written before (here, here, and here) that Cloud Computing is more than some cool software running on a server. Sure, the applications are the sizzle on the steak (+ all the marketing terms -- dynamic, elastic, on-demand, etc.), but there’s a little more to it than that. A user needs to access the application, get the information quickly (or sent it information), and feel confident that the information was delivered securely. The application doesn’t always know what type of device will access it (PC, Mac, Browser, Tablet, Smartphone, etc.), so it can’t be 100% sure it’ll deliver the best user-experience. And users will demands that applications continue to run regardless of the mobile device’s location. All those demands on applications get a lot easier, and in some cases require, an intelligent network providing the infrastructure.
But people often forget those details because they have become so accustomed to a robust network always being there. They might struggle to define the value of that network, just as Kodak did in defining “original technology” in the famous Mad Men episode (Carousel).
Don’t take my word for it, hear what Cisco Cloud CTO Lew Tucker had to say during a recent set of meetings with industry analysts -- here, here, here, here and here. Read More »
Tags: Cisco UCS, Cloud Computing, FabricPath, nexus, OTV, Virtual Security Gateway, virtualization, vWAAS, Why the Network Matters
Over the last few weeks you’ve probably seen several announcements about expanded delivery from Cisco and our ecosystem partners in the area of Integrated Compute Stacks; specifically around SAP and VMware View 4.5 support on VCE Vblock, and E-SMT support on FlexPod for VMware. These solutions are allowing companies to take the next step in a journey towards Private Cloud and delivery of Better IT services for their business and customers. By simplifying the ordering, sizing, deployment, automation and integration of virtualization within the Data Center, customers are beginning to see the transformation from a 70/30 environment focused on maintenance to one that can free up capital and human resources to drive new innovation. Read More »
Tags: EMC, FlexPod, Integrated Compute Stack, Intel, Multi-Tenancy, netapp, nexus, security, SMT, Storage, Vblock, VCE, virtualized multi-tenant data center, VMDC
Selected from hundreds of entries from around the world, Cisco customers King County and Almaviva TSF met the stringent criteria defined by Computerworld, the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), and Storage Networking World (SNW) for awards in the following categories:
1) Best Practices in Energy Efficiency, Green Computing and the Data Center:
King County -- Office of Information Resource Management (OIRM) -- Seattle, Washington
2) Best Practices in Virtualization and Cloud Computing
Almaviva Tele Sistemi Ferroviari (TSF) -- Rome, Italy
About our customers:
King County, the 14th largest county in the United States, used the Nexus platform and MDS switches to build a highly efficient data center shared by all departments. To learn more about how they achieved a green environment, read here.
Almaviva Tele Sistemi Ferroviari (TSF) is one of the leading providers of ICT services to the transport and logistics industries in Italy. Alberto Giaccone, head of network operations at TSF, was present for the awards ceremony. To learn t how TSF transformed its business model deploying Cisco data center best practices, read here.
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Tags: customer award, MDS, nexus