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It’s All About The Applications. But Do You Speak Developer? Do Your Developers Speak Infrastructure?

Infrastructure matters. It’s the foundation on which everything else in IT is built. The purpose of data center infrastructure is to run applications, yet the relationship between infrastructure admins and application developers is often dismal.

Are you an infrastructure admin? When’s the last time  Read More »

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Where Virtualization Does and Doesn’t Make Sense – An Optimization Primer

bioShot-sWritten By Wayne Cullen, Senior Manager, Service Provider Architectures

Along with cloud computing, M2M, collaboration, and hoodie sweatshirts, virtualization is a trend du jour. Like all trends, it’s based on an old idea (dating back to the mainframe era) that has now been reimagined for new purposes. One of the newest roles for virtualization is network functions such as those in switches, routers, and network appliances, including firewalls and load balancers—thanks to Network Functions Virtualization (NFV). And this is just the beginning of what is going to be virtualized in your network.

Being a Selective Virtualizer

Virtualization can provide some big cost savings and reduce network complexity. But virtualization is like chocolate. You eat too much and some bad things can happen. The early days of virtualization (when servers were virtualized) provide a cautionary tale. Server virtualization lowered CapEx but led to skyrocketing operational costs because much more complex processes—hence highly-skilled staff—were required.

The lesson: Be selective in virtualizing your resources and functions. And focus your time optimizing your network to lower TCO with a flexible, adaptable infrastructure as part of your virtualization efforts.

How and Where to Optimize Your Network for Virtualization

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Will Software Defined Networking Actually Happen?

As a writer for the IT media, conference speaker, and co-host of the Packet Pushers podcast, I cover emerging networking technologies often. The new tech that comes across my screen ranges in value from “I can’t believe that got funded,” to “Why has no one thought of this before?” and everything in between. As a big idea, software defined networking (SDN) seems to generate about that same range of responses from network engineers. Some networkers think that SDN is an extraordinary technology that’s going to change the world of IT. Others see SDN as yet another in a long string of quirky networking ideas that never gained acceptance. In fact, as I’ve read responses to my SDN-related content over the last few years, I believe that more folks are in that latter camp. SDN is a fad. SDN is a buzzword. SDN will go nowhere useful. SDN will eventually fail to have a universal impact.

I understand the cynicism. After all, for a long time, networking had lapsed in an innovation coma, with nothing especially exciting coming along to really shake things up. Yes, Ethernet’s gotten faster. And that BYOD thing got everyone excited a couple of years ago. But for the most part, we design, build, and operate networks the same way today that we did fifteen or more years ago. The core underlying protocols have grown up or had new knobs and levers added, but generally speaking, if a networker of the past fell out of a time warp and into a design project today, it wouldn’t take them too terribly long to catch up. Read More »

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Cisco Evolved Programmable Network: Virtualized Services in an EPN World

June 27, 2014 at 12:21 pm PST

nehibBy Greg Nehib, Senior Marketing Manager, Cisco

Part 2 – Virtualized Services in an EPN World?

In part one of this series Gina covered the basic definition of an Evolved Programmable Network or EPN and its linkage to the Cisco Evolved Services Platform (ESP).   Figure 1 offers a quick visual recap.

Figure 1:  Cisco’s Open Network Strategy

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And here’s a link to part one of this blog series if you need to play catch up.

In this segment we Read More »

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Cisco Joins China Mobile at Mobile Asia Expo (MAE)

Mobile is a fast-changing industry! Every year there are new devices, new technologies, and trends.

China is one of the fastest growing mobile markets in the world with:

  • 1.2 billion mobile connections and growing.
  • The number of 3G mobile telephone users reached 386 million in November 2013, a growth of 154 million over the same period of last year.
  • Smart phones in China reached 348 million units from January to October 2013
  • December 2013, China had 500 million mobile Internet users, a growth of 80.09 million compared with that at the end of 2012

The number one mobile operator in China is China Mobile with an estimated 781M subscribers as of Q1 2014. To handle such a large customer base China Mobile has become an industry leader with their vision of Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) in the quest to control operational costs and create the network elasticity new services creation.

Just as Cisco did in the China Mobile Booth at MWC 2014, Cisco is joining China Mobile at Mobile Asia Expo (MAE) in their “Network Function Virtualization Demonstration” located in the China Mobile

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Pictured above: MWC China Mobile & Cisco Virtualization Demo Team

MAE Booth Read More »

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