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Networking Field Day 9 First look: Generation-SDN -Part 1

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If there is one topic prevalent at Networking Field Day #9 it is SDN, well okay maybe this is one of the most prevalent topics in the networking industry right now. Among many the presenters at Networking Field Day #9 quite a few of them bring some flavor of SDN or SDN-WAN’s to the table.

A few of the presenters:

Cumulus

  • Cumulus Networks – A Linux based SDN-powered data center we definitely have a great foundation here. While looking around Cumulus’ website I really do like the sheer amount of information available on their website.
    • Validated Design Guides – Pretty extensive design guides covering guidelines for implementing Cumulus network devices with VMWare, OpenStack, & Big Data (Which are definitely worth reading)
    • Looks like they recently released a new version v2.5, and they have presentation available here. Definitely some good information in there.
    • Probably the most important option (in my option), is the ability to ‘test drive’ this solution. You can request access to their remote lab to get a better look and feel for the Cumulus Solution.
    • Considering this a *nux Distro, some of the backend process are common in the industry. Namely Zebra & Quagga for instance. It’s been a while since I’ve worked these, so whether we consider SDN a brand new technology or a shiny new tool to configure your network. Deep down it still utilizes the same backend methods you and I are familiar with.

CloudGenix

  • CloudGenix – An SDN-WAN Solution, this is an interesting twist of the SDN perspective because up until now when I heard the term SDN I usually associate it within the Data Center.
    • A few noticeables, you can request beta access here, and stay up to date with CloudGenix’s progress.
      • I really like how companies are embracing this openness.
    • To me this sounds like it could be a very useful & popular take on the SDN-perspective, there are many companies out there with 100’s of remote sites that could definitely benefit from the SDN model. Keeping policies in sync across that many locations is always a tough business challenge and drastically affects the troubleshooting process, so I can’t wait to see CloudGenix’s approach and how they can aid in this issue.
    • Using the SDN with the WAN in my opinion may also present a different set of challenges.
      • Where as you typically have a stable and reliable underlay within your data center, the enterprise WAN may or may not have that same level of reliability & stability in the WAN underlay. Does that introduce any new issues to the SDN model, and if so how does CloudGenix approach those new challenges?

 

Both of these companies should be presenting unique and interesting presentations, after all SDN certainly has a lot of buzz in the networking industry and now we are looking at different flavors of SDN. These different flavors of SDN could really affect the future of network implementations. Now a small part of me is wondering, can I get an SDN-Integration application to make sure my SDN-WAN and SDN-Data Center mingle in harmony? Cause we all know sometimes what is good for the goose is not always good for the gander.

Written by Stephen J. Occhiogrosso

February 4, 2015 at 9:57 PM

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