Last week I spent some time at the “Software Defined Networking 2014” conference in London. It’s a relatively small conference I would say however given the growing interest in SDN and rapid progress of the technology it’s always good to hear alternative viewpoints and experiences. And I certainly found the previous conference here in December 2013 interesting -- in particular one vendor in my view using SDN as the “hammer to crack a nut“.
Cisco wasn’t present at this conference last week, so what are others saying about SDN? Here is a quick summary of my takeaways (in some cases questions raised in my mind), which I will expand on below. And let me be controversial in my summary!
(1) Negligible discussion on live SDN deployments.
(2) NFV -- at least for service providers -- is potentially a quicker win than SDN
(3) SDN “Washing” is alive and well
(4) Is OpenFlow more of an academic pursuit?
(5) Open Daylight excitement
(6) Negligible Discussion on “Making It Happen”
As I say, to some my statements may be controversial -- let me explain!
Written By Volker Tegtmeyer,Senior Manager Product & Solution Marketing
The industry is going through a huge business transformation. Enterprises want to focus their resources and investments on their core business rather than investing in non-core IT operations. They are looking at consuming network and IT services from the cloud, rather than investing in in-house operations. Consumers are raising their expectations, demanding to have a consistent application experience on any device at any place and at any time. And consumers expect the same experience at work, which drives overall consumerization of IT.
The market opportunity is huge and can be described as the ‘Internet of Everything’, as people, machines, and processes are communicating with each other at an exponentially increasing scale. This creates new opportunities for everyone.
As part of this, Service Providers can apply innovative technologies, like Software-Defined Network (SDN), (Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and orchestration platforms, in their networks to overcome the current rigidity and complexity of today’s network infrastructure and operations. This opens new business opportunities.
Disaster Recovery as a Service is one example of Read More »
Telecom Italia is constantly on the lookout for innovative technologies that provide a competitive advantage. The goal is to be the first to offer new services to customers.
The latest hot innovations around Software Defined Networking (SDN) caught Telecom Italia’s attention. SDN promises to simplify network operations. And simpler network operations are a big piece of increasing service levels. Delivering new types of services. And doing it all faster.
Like most companies these days, Telecom Italia doesn’t know yet exactly how it will use SDN. But one thing is clear. Introducing new services faster is key to competitive position. That requires a simpler and smarter infrastructure. And today’s mostly manual methods just won’t keep up. Something has to change, and that’s why SDN is garnering so much discussion in the industry.
That’s where Telecom Italia’s story veers from the usual path. Instead of doing the old “wait-and-see,” Telecom Italia partnered with five Italian universities to build a testbed for SDN research. Engineers are already using the lab to familiarize themselves with network programming technology. They’re trying out various scenarios for introducing new services and automating management. So when the time comes to add network programmability to the production network, Telecom Italia can hit the ground running.
The Target: New Services and Lower Costs
The Joint Open Lab (JOL) consortium includes Read More »
One of the great challenges of SDN – that many in my view underplay – is the change in paradigm from having a vendor deliver your network (hardware + software), to having (potentially) an ecosystem deliver your network – and this ecosystem may require you to develop software to perform network tasks or to integrate various SDN components together. This was recognized quite astutely by consultant Jim Metzler, which I discussed in one of my earlier blogs. “Applications can dynamically request services from the network” is what the SDN evangelists will tell you. Jim astutely asked “How exactly do they do that?”. Well ….. the true answer is that either (i) you need to buy [new] apps that do this off the shelf, as it were, or [more likely today] (ii) you need to modify your apps or develop new apps to do this.
Coding -- the New Networking?
So are you ready for procuring apps and/or developing software in your network design team now? Don’t worry if you say “no”. Let me first tell you a few customer reactions to this topic, and then let me update you on Cisco Services can help you develop new SDN apps that solve your specific network challenges.
As I was thinking about how best to advise you on how to “experiment” with SDN technologies, and more specifically why you should run a formal pilot to evaluate SDN technology options (a topic I covered in my previous blog), I was reminded of this “wipeout” picture I took last year at a “freeride” competition – the “Coe Cup” -- at my local ski mountain, Glencoe Moutain Resort, here in the UK. Let me tell you why!
Why you may want to “pilot” new technology adoption!