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Our Ecosystem Begins Here @Ciscocloud

As Cisco prepares for Cisco Live Melbourne #clmel, I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight our @Ciscocloud Intercloud partnership with Telstra

The following Q&A session between executives of our partnered companies identifies the unique challenges of our current business environment and the rapidly changing needs of our customers. Interviewed by Stuart Robbins, the participants in our inaugural blog are Ken Owens, Cloud Services CTO from Cisco, and Tim Otten, GM Cloud Strategy and Platforms from Telstra.

Q: Cisco’s strategy is to create solutions built upon intelligent networks that solve our customers’ challenges. As a key technology partner, Telstra’s diverse customers present unique opportunities for a new generation of solutions for those customers – can you tell us about how our combined capabilities will help those customers be successful?

[Otton, Tim J] Networks are increasingly important to the delivery of services as we shift to “the Cloud,” and the concurrent profusion of data, workforce mobility, distributed application environments, and the hybrid infrastructures supporting those applications. Both Cisco and Telstra are committed to delivering highly secure, high-performance intelligent network capabilities.

These networks must be thoroughly responsive to an ever-changing set of user and application requirements – adaptive, flexible, and resilient. Both companies have a rich tradition of global insight gained from a relentless focus on customer requirements.

[Owens, Ken] Telstra is one of the industry’s most advanced solution providers, with a noteworthy history of successful technology transformations in telecommunications. From the earliest days of IT outsourcing, and managed hosting, and now as we shift to the Cloud, Telstra has provided true leadership to the industry during these transformations.

Like Cisco, they view their customers’ strategic objectives as Priority 1 and will do whatever is necessary to make their customers successful. For more than 25 years, Cisco and Telstra have guided the market through each new technological shift, with exceptional people leading the way.

Q: One aspect of the changing enterprise landscape is the “blurred” boundaries between large enterprises in business ecosystems. While the basic principles remain important (resilient architectures, reliable networks, responsive applications), what are some of the emerging challenges in this “ecosystem first” world?


[Otton, Tim J] The business landscape has changed. Cloud, Mobility, Social Media, advanced analytics, and open platforms are also changing the landscape for service creation and innovation. Increasingly, service creation will emerge both within and beyond (intra- and inter-organizational) boundaries to better serve a growing number of mobile users and a project-oriented workforce.

In order to support connectivity as well as enable full integration with many external partners and providers, businesses are now required to ‘open’ their IT environment. Increasingly, organizations are choosing to expose their own systems and proprietary data to third-parties, creating “greater value” by encouraging innovative use of a company’s intellectual assets. Software applications are distributed, both geographically and architecturally. All of these factors alter the connectivity/security paradigms of traditional enterprise IT.

[Owens, Ken] Tim is right on, and the exciting element of this model is that it’s driven by the customer! This is not a consumer fad or one-time remodel, this is the pace and speed by which business must adopting to the requirements of their customers and the rapidly changing marketplace. A successful business today requires a flexible set of services and capabilities to quickly adapt to this changing landscape. Together, Cisco and Telstra have a proven track record of enabling innovation to address the changing needs of the businesses we support.

Q: Providing exceptional products and services to Enterprise IT is familiar territory to both Cisco and Telstra, and this common ground is one reason why the Cisco-Telstra partnership makes great sense. As we move beyond IT, we’re also being asked to directly address the needs of business departments (marketing, product management, customer support). How do we adapt to meet those needs?


[Otton, Tim J] We need to develop a deeper understanding of the different “lines of business” within the Enterprise. We need to better understand what drives their business and the market environments in which they operate. In other words, we need to become an enabler of business solutions rather than simply selling more technology. Our focus needs to be increasingly on the business outcomes we can deliver to our customers.
We need equip our sales teams to communicate those solutions, to be able to engage customers in conversations that start with business issues and proceed from there to provision enabling technologies rather than starting (and often finishing with) technology alone.
At the same time, we need to better support IT departments so that these services can be integrated into the overall Enterprise network architecture- – -ensuring that these distributed services are secure, and optimized to perform reliably. Telstra and Cisco need to be seen as enabling partners, and not just suppliers.

[Owens, Ken] The needs of the business can be vast, complicated, and rapidly evolving to meet the needs of a changing marketplace. Cisco and Telstra are leaders in business transformation. The key to success in this ever-changing environment is to provide leadership with speed, agility, innovative leadership to assist each customer’s ability to adapt to the changes. Of course, Tim’s right, we also need to help IT executives quickly transition not only their technology, but also their processes and practices.

Q: The recipe seems simple enough = one part: exceptional technology with the associated expertise, and one part: an evolved partnership methodology (i.e., Partnership 2.0) that will serve as the foundation for what our companies can accomplish together.

One last question. Imagine what success looks like for the joint Cisco-Telstra effort in two years: what are the core behaviors/values that we’ll be most proud to have embraced, when we glance back? In other words, what are the central organizational principles that will serve to anchor this new style of ecosystem development?


[Otton, Tim J] My vision for the partnership is that we have developed an advanced understanding of the requirements of stakeholders – whether it be IT, LOB, or end-users – within the customers we served and are singularly focused on the business outcomes that we can jointly deliver for our customers.

[Owens, Ken] The demands of Enterprise 2.0 require an infrastructure that is both elastic and reliable, flexible yet secure. Organizations, too, will require those very characteristics. To accomplish this,“Governance 2.0” and “Partnership 2.0” become framework components of that new ecosystem in service of our customer’s transformed world. As Tim stated, the business outcomes and continuously delivering business value are the key principles.

Thank you Tim for you time to discuss the joint journey we are embarking on.

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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – February 20, 2015

Partner-Weekly-Rewind-v2Each week, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco Partner Ecosystem news and stories, as well as point you to important, Cisco-related partner content you may have missed along the way. Here’s what you might have missed this week:

Off the Top

It was quite a busy week on the Partner Blog. Hopefully you had a chance to read Sherri Liebo’s blog on how digital marketing has transformed the traditional marketing landscape. If not, be sure to check it out and take a look back at her super heroes posts from 2014 and how those particular marketing team members can lead the way as digital marketing continues to shift how we all work.

As we are getting ever closer to this year’s Marketing Velocity event, this blog is a nice look at how all our marketing efforts tie together and what “digital” is doing to all of us.

Intelligent Cybersecurity

Raja Sundaram had some insight into cybersecurity and how it affects your customers. He looked at changing business models, dynamic threats, and complexity and fragmentation. Branching out from there he pointed out how Cisco is offering up the products you need for your customers to tackle these tough security situations. It’s a great overview on security. Read More »

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OpenStack Summit Vancouver: Cast Your Votes Today!

The OpenStack Summit is happening from May 18-22nd in Vancouver, with sessions submitted and chosen for the community, by the community!

What interests you when it comes to OpenStack? Do you need a deep dive in a particular project? Are you wondering if the economics make sense? Are you trying to figure out how to create a product or service based on or powered by OpenStack?

In the OpenStack community, the members drive the agenda. If you’re a Foundation member—and especially if you’re attending—step up! It’s time to vote for speakers for the Vancouver Summit! The polls opened last week, but they’re closing soon: on 2/23 at 5:00 PM Central time.

This handy link will take you to the main Foundation voting page, where you can see ALL of the sessions that have been proposed. If you’d like to avoid sifting through the 1,000+ submissions there though, check out the links below. They will take you straight to the talks submitted by my clever colleagues at Cisco, who are some of the most skilled OpenStack pros on the planet. (#justsayin)

Do you have a talk we should know about? Leave it in the comments or tweet me @aliamagasu.

Happy voting, and see you in Vancouver!



Highly Available, Performant, VXLAN Service Node

Scaling Neutron with ML2 Hierarchical Networks

DON: Diagnosing OVS in Neutron

Network Design Considerations for OpenStack Neutron Deployments

A network solution for scalable, performant and highly available OpenStack clouds

Neutron extension framework overview and use cases

Addressing DHCP and DNS Scalability: A dnsmasq Alternative

Complex scenario tests for IPv6

The State of IPv6: Are We There Yet?

Cloud VPNs in OpenStack

Neutron mitosis and the L4-7 services roadmaps

Providing Rich Network Services in a Federated OpenStack Public Cloud

A new IPv6 based approach for simple, transparent, scalable OpenStack Networks

NFV Workloads on Trusted Cloud Infrastructure

OpenStack for NFV – A deployment case-study

Network Virtualization Overlay Showdown moderated by 451 Chief Analyst Eric Hanselman

Scaling Neutron with ML2 Hierarchical Networks

BrainStorm – Artificial Neural Networks as a Service

Model for seamless mobility of network services across different types of cloud backends

Optimizing Your OpenStack Data Plane for Performance and Scale

OpenStack integration with Cisco Technologies



Demystifying Logs in OpenStack Clouds

Want total visibility? That’s expensive: Winning the cost-insight tradeoff.

The other side of Horizon – An Operator-focused OpenStack visualization dashboard

OK, so what the heck is going on in my OpenStack Cloud Deployment now…?

Understanding Cloud Operations by Crunching Boat Loads of Metrics

Understanding OpenStack (Monasca/Ceilometer) metrics with SQL over streams

The Tale of Two Sorcerers Journey into Accomplishing the Unthinkable: OpenStack Upgrades

How to rapidly migrate virtualized enterprise workloads to an OpenStack cloud environment

Things That Go Bump in the Night: Protecting your Cloud from GHOSTS and Other Exploits

High Availability and Resiliency Testing Strategies for OpenStack Clouds

Stabilizing the Jenga Tower: Scaling out Ceilometer

Self-Driving Storage for OpenStack



Building the Cloud Community: How to Produce a Successful OpenStack Meetup

Crafting Unforgettable Events & Meetups for Developers

OpenStack Product Management Strategies [PANEL]


Insights and Use Cases

Are You Ready for OpenStack?

OpenStack for Users of VMware: What You Need to Know

OpenStack Research Study: User Experience

What’s Next in OpenStack: A Glimpse at the Roadmap


Policy, Orchestration, Containers, and Projects

PlaceWise: A smart (multi-) cloud resource placement recommendation engine and service

Troviso: Real-time DBaaS for Trove

Cognitive: Machine Learning as a Service for OpenStack

Surge – deploying and scaling data stream processing pipelines on OpenStack

Panel: Defining Policy Frameworks for OpenStack

Meta-data Driven Cloud – Running OpenStack @ Scale Using a Policy Framework (Intel)

Group Based Policy Hands-on Lab

Data-driven Optimized Cloud Resource Placements and Rebalancing

TriggerWise: A policy-driven triggering engine and generalized action executor service

μStack: Open physical infrastructure you can take with you

The Jenkins Plugin for OpenStack: Simple and Painless CI/CD

Provisioning Infrastructure, Platforms, and Applications with Heat and Puppet

Learn you some Ansible for great good!

An introduction to cloud service definition

Designing for Operations – Operationalizing OpenStack

Data-driven Optimized Cloud Resource Placements and Rebalancing

Supporting QoS in Zaqar with a Kafka Policy Engine

Nova-Docker: A Practical Overview

Thanks, Docker! The pros and cons of containerizing your OpenStack services

Magnum – Containers-as-a-Service for OpenStack

How OpenStack Enables Applications

Embracing & Extending OpenStack: The InterCloud deployment at Cisco

Elastic LBaaS in Cisco Cloud with ZERO Infrastructure Changes


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Seven Ways to Move to the Cloud

While cloud computing is based on a number of technology innovations, I’m going to write for the non-technical person who I think needs to understand this major shift.  In the end, cloud computing will affect every business, every industry.  I’ll start this blog by sharing a story.

A few years ago, I was in a meeting with six CIOs of one of the largest healthcare providers. I asked each a question as they introduced themselves: “What are you working on?”

The first CIO, Bill, replied, “I’m working on a strategy to move to cloud.”

Next, I asked Mary, “What do you do?” Mary also said she was working on a strategy to move the cloud.

We got through every one of them and every one of them had the same answer.

I asked, “So what does that mean, working on a strategy to move to the cloud?”

They collectively said, “We’re really not sure, but we’re working on it.”

I wasn’t actually there to talk to them about cloud computing, but I said, “Give me 10 to 15 minutes to help you think about what it might mean to move to the cloud.”

I’d like to share an abbreviated view of this discussion in this blog, beginning with reviewing my cloud-computing framework.
Read More »

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All signs point to one thing: if you aren’t talking to your customers about cloud services, your competition probably is

And when it comes to cloud there’s a lot to talk about.  According to a new IDC white paper, sponsored by Cisco, “Enabling Partner Value in the Cloud Economy”, 68 percent of companies with more than 1,000 employees are using some form of cloud or plan to implement cloud within the next 12 months.  In addition, companies adopting cloud expect to spend 54 percent of their IT budgets on cloud within the next two years.

For the white paper, IDC contacted 23 providers from among the more than 200 cloud providers offering Cisco Powered services. What makes the white paper unique is that these partners are sharing their perspective on the value of the Cloud and Managed Services Program and how CMSP has helped them expand their business.  These companies are investing substantial resources into building out their infrastructure to offer customers cloud services as they need them.  They are making their investments based on what they believe are customers’ primary needs and key concerns.

Specifically, the white paper explores which perceived factors are the most important to cloud providers in reaching their customer.  It also reveals how partners seek to differentiate themselves and where they see the best value in their cloud infrastructure investments. Read More »

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