In my first blog, I discussed telco customer challenges and the new architectures they are considering.  On my way back from Johannesburg, South Africa, I am writing this companion blog discussing how we’re helping telco customers these days.

The Cisco Approach

Greek philosopher, Heraclitus said “change is the only constant in life.” And without question, change is the lifeblood to our IT industry and Cisco is no different from others.

Our conversation is no longer about whether there’s an impact on IT departments, but about how to influence change to meet the business needs of the company. Refocusing an entire business around a common goal is not an easy feat. And when we add OpenSource in this equation, situation becomes more interesting.

Starting from ASR 5000 for SP domain, currently Cisco is the biggest preacher of the OpenSource adoption in this market segment.

Cisco is a major OpenSource contributor and has contributed more than 40 “givebacks” of open source software over the past three decades. Cisco collaborates with the open source community to reduce time-to-market for Cisco solutions, and to help partners develop applications designed to enhance the collaborative experience.

Cisco is one of the major contributors of OpenStack as well. There are multiple distro/deployments of OpenStack, with one from Cisco as well, and there is also support for Cisco’s  entire Cloud portfolio (UCS & Nexus).  In addition, the Vice-Chair of the board, Lew Tucker, our Cloud CTO @Cisco, presented the keynote, A World of Many (OpenStack) Clouds, at last week’s OpenStack Summit in Paris.

Putting Cisco’s Solution to the Test

Over the past year, Cisco has been building up its OpenStack professional services capabilities.  What type of projects do we help customers with?  What kind of OpenStack challenges do we help them address?  And why do they come to Cisco for help?

Here are 3 examples from across our European, Middle East and Africa (what we call “EMEAR”) region where Cisco Services have being driving customer success with OpenStack:

  • One of the SPs of the region would like to offer new ICT services and markets by developing a next-generation, web-scale cloud for Enterprises and Residential customers with 4 Millions VMs.
    • This SP is intending to be highly competitive with AMZ who is the market leader today
    • To meet this aggressive requirement, this SP would like to leverage 90% Open Source Virtualization and Hypervisors and 10% Commercial ones.
    • For the OpenSource component, Cisco has setup a POC leveraging Devstack IceHouse.
    • In the next phase, Cisco is planning to take it to the RHEL 7.0 with OSP 5.0.

Other SPs from the region are following the same trend:

  • For one of them, Cisco is leveraging OpenStack to create Tenant Virtual Networks and Provider Networks;
  • While for the other one, Cisco is starting shortly on an OpenStack POC with the most recent Juno release of OpenStack.

Since we formally launched our Cisco Professional Services for OpenStack  last year, my colleagues and I in the OpenStack professional services team are willing to help you adopt OpenStack successfully.  We look forward to helping you directly, just as we did last week at OpenStack Summit in Paris, take a look at the crowds we had at the booth!


I hope you have enjoyed this blog. Please feel free to get in touch via the comments field.  For more, visit our OpenStack @ Cisco website:  http://www.cisco.com/go/openstack.


Mudassir Iqbal

Network Consulting Engineering

Cloud and IT Transformation Team, Advanced Services