[Note: This is part 3 in a three part series of blogs discussing how Cisco ACI stands alone in the market. Part 1 | Part 2]

In part 1 we talked about how Cisco ACI simplifies diagnosis and enables DevOps Model compared to competing network virtualization solutions.

In part 2 we talked about how Cisco ACI enables organizations to proactively assure SLAs and supports efficient and scalable architecture for demanding applications.

In part 3 we’ll look at a couple of scenarios impacting security and cloud IT teams. Again, we’ll review it from ACI perspective and compare that to other network virtualization solutions.

1) ACI Secures Bare Metal and Virtual Applications

Security and compliance are always top of mind for most organizations especially if they’re in the healthcare and financial industries. The challenge for these organizations is multi-fold; whether it is related to ensuring security rules are applied correctly and consistently across the entire infrastructure, responding quickly to security breaches and threats, enforcing compliance, etc.

Let’s zoom in on a common scenario that customers are facing today which is managing physical and virtual firewalls to secure both bare metal and virtual apps in a consistent fashion. The need to apply these policies consistently becomes more critical as organizations add virtual firewalls to secure East – West traffic in addition to physical firewalls. With Cisco ACI, all security management occurs from a single place, APIC. Security IT admins will be able to apply whatever policies required for bare metal and virtual applications without worrying about network settings. This means no errors that lead to downtime and faster service deployment to meet business velocity.

The other advantage with an ACI approach is the ability to seamlessly scale the infrastructure without compromise on security.

The approach in virtual network solutions will be limited to virtual firewalls and specific hypervisor. This means inconsistent policy management across physical and virtual environments that can compromise overall security and compliance.

See Joe Onisick detailing this here


2) ACI Automates Cloud Infrastructure For Any App And Environment

Surveys have shown that the majority of customers deploy multi-hypervisors strategy for various reasons. As such, organizations have to manage workloads on different virtualization stacks and are building a cloud strategy to ensure seamless operation and management.

So a true multi-hypervisor approach is required, and one that can bring the same level of service for all virtualization options and emerging cloud stacks.

See Joe Onisick here talking about a specific scenario where customers want to automate and orchestrate multiple hypervisors and bare metal servers environment in an open fashion. With ACI, we’re hypervisor agnostic and provide open RESTful API’s that allows them to automate and orchestrate through a system of their choice.


When you look at network virtualization solutions you’re limited to a single hypervisor but if you want to go with multi-hypervisors you end up with multiple control system.


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Rami Rammaha

Sr. Marketing Manager