To kick off this week’s software-defined networking (SDN) roundup, here’s our coverage (so far) of Cisco’s Insieme launch from Wednesday, in case you’re not sick of it already:
- Is Cisco’s SDN Architecture Really That Special?
- Insieme’s Insides Use (Gasp!) an Overlay Protocol
- Cisco’s Insieme, Revealed at Last: All Your Policy Are Belong to Us
Sources told us that other stuff happened this week, too, so we checked it out. Here’s what we came up with.
1. ‘Application-Centric’ Is So 2010 (or Earlier)
Jumping on Cisco’s Application-Centric Infrastructure (ACI) concept, Plexxi wants to make sure you don’t forget its concept of affinities, which have been the heart of an “application-centric” data-center architecture for a few years now. Look, they even have a video about it.
Then again, Cisco has been trying to make the networks “application-centric” for years. Lisa Caywood wrote a Halloween blog entry about the ghosts of Cisco’s Service-Oriented Network Architecture (SONA) and Application-Oriented Networking, which debuted in 2005 and hung around a little while before vanishing.
Plexxi, by the way, also announced its second-generation product: the Plexxi Pod Switch Interconnect and Plexxi Data Services Engine.
2. Cisco Hearts OpenStack
OpenStack hasn’t exactly taken over the world in terms of real implementations. But it sure has a lot of powerful friends, and it’s still adding more.
Cisco announced Monday that OpenStack now runs on Unified Computing System (UCS) servers and Nexus devices. As InformationWeek points out, the stakes are high, considering OpenStack is seen by many as a way to upend companies like Cisco. For that reason, Openstack isn’t a 100-percent-comfortable fit for Cisco. As editor Charles Babcock writes: “UCS offloads storage and network traffic from the hypervisor’s virtual switch and moves it through a Cisco Nexus 2000 fabric extender card to a parent Nexus switch. Some OpenStack adopters, particularly heavy Cisco network device users, will find it an easier pathway to private cloud.”
Separately, it turns out the VCE joint venture, of which Cisco is an owner, has customers who want to run OpenStack on vBlocks as well. It’s likely to happen, considering VCE is an OpenStack corporate sponsor, as Network World points out.
3. Even More from the OpenStack Summit
- Maybe we should rethink that “taken over the world” crack. OpenStack is apparently really big in China, as Datamation learned at the OpenStack Summit in Hong Kong.
- Pacnet unveiled a network-as-a-service (NaaS) based on Vello’s Connectivity Exchange application.
- Canonical, curators of the Ubuntu Linux distribution, introduced its OpenStack Interoperability Lab (OIL).
- Red Hat introduced Enterprise-Grade Cloud Management for OpenStack and a boatload of related stuff.
4. Microsoft Narrows Its CEO Search
Reuters reported that Microsoft is down to two candidates for CEO: former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop and Ford chairman Alan Mulally. Looks like Elop really, really isn’t going after that CEO vacancy at Juniper.
5. Dell Finally Goes Private
Michael Dell finally retook ownership of his company after eight months of CNBC-style drama. The hybrid cloud and the next-generation data center will be two of Dell‘s ongoing priorities, as P.H. Ferrand, North America president, told InformationWeek. For the hybrid cloud, Dell owns management tools acquired with companies like Gale, but its bigger competitive edge will be in tight customer relationships, Ferrand said. (Not that that’s so easy, when your competitors get listed as Microsoft, HP, and IBM.) For the data center, Dell has server chops but needs its software story to “coalesce,” as IWeek editor Michael Endler puts it.
5. Timing Is Everything
What vendor would have the guts to announce a networking product on the same day as the Insieme launch? MRV, that’s who. It’s an optical transport box called OptiDriver.
6. And Furthermore…
Tom Hollingsworth says Microsoft needs to own networking expertise. His answer: Buy Big Switch.