“There are tap solutions out there, but they require hardware,” says Wendy Cartee, PLUMgrid’s VP of product management and marketing. A tap device is an appliance that is typically inserted into an Ethernet network between the switch and a server. In addition to the hardware, it requires some cabling. The tap monitors traffic traversing the link.
ONS 6.0 will give customers the ability to deploy virtual taps anywhere in the data center, whether on a virtual machine (VM) or on a container. It’s all software with no hardware required, making it easier to deploy tap at scale.
“They can choose a VM or container they want to monitor and even go a level deeper to select an actual traffic flow,” says Cartee. “You don’t have to mirror an entire stream of traffic. They can zoom in on specific traffic they want to tap into and perform analytics and monitoring.”
For example, a customer could identify all the packets on a particular website, or on a database or some other application.
PLUMgrid says virtual taps are necessary for networks that connect hundreds of ephemeral containers per day on any given server to other containers, VMs, applications, workloads, and microservices that need to be secured with consistent policies.
In addition to its virtual tap, PLUMgrid today says its latest security suite — CloudSecure — also enables third-party security software to be added to PLUMgrid’s virtual network. And it announced an ecosystem of security partners, including Intel, Fortinet, and Check Point.
Earlier this year, PLUMgrid announced a partnership with Rackspace, which includes the PLUMgrid’s ONS platform in its private cloud, for customers who require software-defined networking (SDN). The new capability being added to ONS 6.0 will be passed along to Rackspace customers.
“We are increasing capabilities around security, which is top-of-mind for consumers of our private cloud,” says Bryan Thompson, general manager of OpenStack Private Cloud at Rackspace.