Network programmability means democracy, means freedom, freedom to program across all layers and entities, software or hardware – depending on your needs. Is SDN required to have network programmability? Not at all. Does the SDN architecture leverage network programmability? Yes, of course. So, why do many people equate network programmability and SDN? Read More »
Thanks to SDN, the “Controller” word pops up in many network architecture discussions these days. In networking alone, we’re already surrounded by many “controllers” and we’re busy introducing more as we speak: For example, Session Border Controllers or Wireless LAN Controllers have been around for quite some time, and have recently announced the OpenDaylight Controller, the Cisco XNC, or the Cloupia Unified Infrastructure Controller. So what is a “Controller” in networking terms, and how many do we need in emerging network architectures?
Having been part of the team who developed the Cisco Cloud Enablement Services, our professional services to help customers enable and adopt cloud computing, I was absolutely delighted watching the CiscoLive! keynote yesterday to hear Padmasree Warrior announce the results of the March 2013 IDC market research study that showed Cisco come out on top for cloud professional services [Source: “2013 U.S. Professional Services Opportunities Related to Cloud Services”, IDC Doc # 239862, March 2013].
In this survey, as the chart below shows (reproduced with the kind permission of IDC), respondents indicated that Cisco professional services were used most often across all of the three cloud categories that IDC measured: cloud applications, cloud application platforms, and cloud infrastructure. Ahead of Accenture, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle/Sun, HP and others.
I admit it. I’ve grown weary of the debate about whether SDN includes network programmability or whether or not SDN can only be accomplished through NfV, or the relative merits of control plane / dataplane separation. I will leave those debates to others more focused on the technology itself. Personally, I have been more fascinated with what I see as the new business opportunities emerging around SDN.
Certainly there is a raft of opportunities for start-up companies in the controller space or in the virtualization of various networking functions. Many innovative new companies are re-examining existing network functions within the SDN paradigm; that will lead to some potentially new and useful approaches that may be cheaper/easier/faster than current designs. No doubt many customers will see value in these new ways of doing things, and everybody will benefit.
But that’s not what I find fascinating about SDN. What I am starting to see are ideas that are completely out of the box, and would likely not be thought of by typical network technologists working alone. Let me discuss a few categories of things I have seen possible with the emerging technologies.
The Network as a Compute Resource
It turns out Read More »
If you are following the industry debates around Software Defined Networking (SDN), and are wondering “What really is SDN?”, “How the concepts of network virtualization and network programmability relate to SDN?” and perhaps more pertinently, “What can it do for my business” and “What network problems, indeed what IT problems, could it solve for my organization?” Well, don’t worry, you are in good company. Many customers looking at SDN are asking exactly these questions. When I blogged the other week on “The Missing ‘S’ in the SDN Debate”, I mentioned I would write again in more depth on the offerings from Cisco Services that would help you identify and benefit from SDN, the next evolution in the network. Today, then, I will share more information on the “Cisco Strategy and Analysis Services for Open Network Environment (ONE)”, which helps you gain an appreciation of what SDN is, what Cisco ONE is, and how it will help you. This service has been design specifically to answer the questions above for you, enabling you to optimize your IT strategy to greatest effect.
First, if you are attending CiscoLive in Orlando this coming week (week of 24 June 2013), please do look out for our “Design Centers” in the Data Center Cloud or Enterprise Networks areas of the Cisco booth. Here you can discuss your SDN and Cisco ONE questions with Cisco Services’ solutions architects, who have already been running strategy workshops with some of the early adopters of SDN and beta customers of Cisco ONE.