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vPath: The Secret Sauce to Enabling Virtual Network Services

Wow, there’s been a lot of news in the SDN and virtual networking space in the last week or so! VMware acquiring Nicira, and Oracle acquiring Xsigo are testimony to how important virtual overlay networks and virtual switching infrastructure has become for data center vendors, and how integral they are to each company’s strategy. Speaking of our own Nexus 1000V-based virtual networks, last week I provided an overview and some new resources on Virtual Extensible LANs (VXLAN) for Nexus 1000V virtual switches. That turned out to be quite a popular post, so I’m following up this week on another fundamental component of Nexus 1000V-based virtual networks, vPath, the secret sauce that allows us to deploy virtual network services in the data center.

What is vPath? Well, if VXLANs can set up secure tunnels over a shared, multi-tenant virtual network, vPath is a feature of the Nexus 1000V virtual switch that can redirect traffic to virtual application services before the switch sends the packets down into the virtual machine. Very important stuff, but how does it do that? I find that my blog posts are more popular the less I type, and the more I embed cool TechWiseTV videos that illustrate the concept, so I’m dusting off this classic from the TWTV team on just how vPath does that with our Virtual Security Gateway (VSG). Take it away Robb

But wait, there’s more… Read More »

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What’s your Cloud IQ?

Two of my favorite geeks are presenting a workshop today on Bringing the Cloud to your Remote Offices.  Jimmy Ray is hosting his ‘brother from another mother’ (as we fondly refer to him) Matt Bolick.  Matt first blew our doors off back in 2009 as we featured the then new ISR G2 in our ‘Routers are Dead…Long Live the Router show (now retired).  Well, Matt was a featured guest recently on another big show we did, the Cisco Cloud Intelligent Network.   You can see Matt’s segment on Application Visibility and Control from that show right now as a great pre-study for the workshop above.   I also recommend our recent ‘Fundamentals of the Cloud Services Router’ as a secondary study resource.  Matt was instrumental in our writing and creation of this tool as well and I think you will find it valuable.

Heres the thing – The Cloud and the Network are very co-dependent.  The network is poised for incredible leaps of intelligence now more than ever with this pressure from cloud implementations being quick to reveal weakness. I have even heard where the WAN has been re-defined as “Weak Area Network.”  Why?  Poor performance, inadequate security, lack of visibility and complex management, just to name a few An intelligent network endows the WAN with the  efficiency of cloud and and the confidence of a private network.

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Overlay Transport Virtualization

Fresh from the lab, Jimmy Ray takes a question on OTV or Overlay Transport Virtualization.  This layer 2 Data Center Interconnect technology is growing in popularity as deployed on the Nexus 7000 as it promises transparent workload mobility, business resilience and superior efficiency with computing resources. This could be THE technology for those of you overcomplicating your network design or simply not attempting certain architectures for you did not know this could be done.

We featured OTV quite awhile back in one of our earlier Fundamental animations.  See if this also helps you.   Read More »

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Cisco live! Recap: Jimmy Ray Talks Virtual Overlays and “Programming” the Network

This week at Cisco live! in San Diego I had a chance to catch up with Jimmy Ray Purser and talk about Cisco’s strategy for programming the network, and specifically programming virtual network slices of a larger physical infrastructure:

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Hear from Our Customers at Cisco Live San Diego

As organizations work to evolve their IT infrastructure into a cloud-based model, one concept becomes self-evident: connecting users to the cloud with confidence. In order to achieve that, any virtual infrastructure must have the ability to pool multiple physical devices into a single virtual instance, then expand and contract that instance simultaneously and instantaneously based on application, location or line of business requirements. Such needs further emphasize the importance of design flexibility and scalable deployment models within the WAN. Cisco WAAS provides exactly that and more. But, don’t just take our words for it. Hear directly from our customers at Cisco Live this week.  Read More »

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