Cisco and Microsoft — Collaborating on Data Center Innovation
I’ve led the Networking and Security Business at Cisco for just over a year now. As exciting as it is to release new technologies that ultimately will become the networking infrastructure powering the world’s future disruptors – last week’s intent-based networking announcement for example – it’s the breadth and scale of Cisco’s business that make my job as an engineer in Silicon Valley, a pretty special one.
Every day, I have the opportunity to build innovation for a scope of workloads that spans the world whether it’s running in the campus, data center, cloud or on a device. The network literally has never been more relevant.
The way I see it, the next-generation of networking delivers automation and intelligence with programmable hardware and software – consumed with models that work best for our customers’ workloads. For markets like data center including service providers and webscale companies, our customers have high end automation and scaling demands. We can help them build their networks to meet their optimized specifications through different hardware and software component configurations depending on their needs.
Our collaboration with Microsoft is a great example of how we do that. Cisco and Microsoft have collaborated on adapting Cisco’s NX-OS on Nexus 9500 switches, based on Cisco’s CloudScale ASICs. In addition, Cisco’s Nexus 9200/9300 platforms running Cisco’s Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI) will offer customers the freedom to run the network operating system of their choice on SAI-ready Cisco Nexus platforms.
As Yousef Khalidi, CVP, Microsoft Azure Networking said, “Cisco support for the SAI abstraction layer on its Nexus CloudScale switches helps fulfill our vision for SAI to enable rapid innovation in silicon, CPU, power, port density, optics, and speed across multiple platforms while enabling Microsoft and cloud operators to leverage the same software stack across a variety of switch hardware platforms.”
As we continue changing the networking blueprint to intent-based infrastructure – from hardware-centric to software-driven, from manual to automated, and static to dynamic, strong collaboration can lead to a profound impact on business innovation and agility. Cisco is committed to providing even greater customer choice and flexibility for the segments of our business that need it.