Over the past few decades, cloud consumption across the world has grown tremendously. We have seen servers get consolidated into the data center with resulting network simplification. While numerous organizations have been able to build successful businesses and network architectures consuming services from the cloud, there are specific use cases that are challenged with the cloud model. These use cases require stringent availability metrics, stricter data integrity and connectivity nuances that don’t fit well within the cloud model. Based on the specific needs, these use cases require the equipment to be located locally near or on the customer premise. In order to meet the needs of the customer there is a rapidly growing cloud business segment called the hosted private cloud. Cisco and NetApp are excited to deliver a joint hosted private cloud solution called the Managed EdgeCloud.

Cloud-in-a-Box Consumption Model

Network architects recognize that every use case and every workload is different. There are certain use cases that work better with resources that are either dedicated or in close proximity. A cloud-in-a-box solution can be hosted at the customer location as customer premise equipment (CPE) and managed by the service provider. Since equipment is located on the customer premise with the Managed EdgeCloud solution, it is ideal for users that do not want their data traversing the WAN, such as universities and research organizations. The user’s data security concerns are more bounded, given that data storage and usage remains within the local network. Additionally, the workload can be designed to deliver the metrics expected by the users. All of this, while maintaining the ease of consumption with a pure play cloud model. The service provider is still in charge of delivering the solution to the customer and delivering a preconfigured rack to the end customer that only requires connectivity to their network, power, and WAN. Once this is complete, the customer network is ready to go live. From that point onwards, the service provider can open up the solution and continue to monitor and manage it remotely.

Managed EdgeCloud Overview

Service Providers are looking for new ways to deliver value added services to their enterprise customers. They can fulfill this need for Hosted Private Cloud with the Managed EdgeCloud and extend their cloud infrastructure to the enterprise edge. This converged infrastructure solution from Cisco and NetApp is a prepackaged solution that they can be easily deployed at the customer location.

Managed EdgeCloud packs in powerful routing, storage and compute capabilities in a rack with an ability to support multiple concurrent virtual machines. The solution includes the Cisco 4000 Series Integrated Services Routers (ISR 4000) for routing, Cisco UCS E-Series Server blades for compute, and NetApp FAS platform for storage. It is available in different sizes, with the smaller size being a great fit for mid-market and low-end Enterprise branches. Additionally, there are some new powerful UCS E-Series Server blades that will be available in July. Please check out Vikram’s blog for details.

Benefits of Managed EdgeCloud Solution

Managed EdgeCloud delivers the ease of use of cloud, while providing all the benefits of a CPE solution:

OPEX Savings: Just like a pure play cloud solution, customers are saved from the operational overhead of managing their infrastructure, even though the equipment is located on premise.

Predictability: One of the drivers for this use case is the need for predictability from the network, storage and compute that comprise this solution. Customers can now realize the benefits of a cloud based model while avoiding the unpredictability of a cloud based model. This ensures that their business-critical network is always on.

CAPEX Savings: One of the challenges with CPE solutions is the complexity of the network due to multiple components. MEC solution comes prepackaged and saves the customer from having to deploy and integrate various products that often require a multitude of management systems.

Increased Uptime: The customer can now rest easy knowing their network will be always on with the remote monitoring and maintenance by the service provider.

Data Integrity: The customer IT can be assured that the business data and intellectual property is contained and processed locally, since the cloud is located on the premise. This is especially relevant for universities and research organizations.

With the promise of a hosted Managed EdgeCloud, we are just scratching the surface in terms of the options the solution unlocks.

Visit us at Cisco Live Las Vegas – June 25-29, 2017

The Cisco and NetApp team will be showcasing the Managed EdgeCloud solution at Cisco Live Las Vegas. Please visit us at NetApp booth#2115 to learn more about the Manage EdgeCloud solution.

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Dax Choksi

Sr. Product Manager, Enterprise Routing