Some of the network gear vendors cast a wary look at network management
vendors, particularly those who do continual, automatic discovery of the
network inventory and connectivity. Why?
We know what’s actually out there, and what’s actually being used.
We had one customer in the insurance industry who was due to renew their
maintenance agreement with a large, well-known network gear vendor. The
typical scenario was to be handed a spreadsheet by the salesperson, listing
the serial numbers of the network devices they had purchased, together with a
summary of maintenance charges.
Prior to the meeting, the network manager ran an inventory report sing
Entuity, and – not uncommonly – discovered that the list of devices under
maintenance as tracked by the network hardware vendor did not match the list
of devices currently running. In fact, they were considerably off. 30,... (more)
Imagine you are dropped off in the middle of a jungle, without any
familiarity of what to eat, where to drink, or how to build a fire and
shelter. Were you ready? Do you survive? In an environment that can, quite
literally, eat you alive, it helps to be equipped with the right tools and
knowledge for anything that may come your way.
In fact, it's hard to prepare yourself for any task that is constantly
evolving, always growing, and undoubtedly daunting. Today's IT professionals
have to be on the lookout for any way to prepare and learn about new
technological advances as they im... (more)
In our initial part in this blog series on SDN, I gave a quick background
overview. This part of the series will cover overlay SDN and underlay SDN.
SDN technologies are broadly split into two fundamentally different paradigms
- "overlay" SDN and "underlay" SDN. With overlay SDN the SDN is implemented
on top of an existing physical network. With underlay SDN, the fabric of
the underlying network is reconfigured to provide the paths required to
provide the inter-endpoint SDN connectivity.
Overlay SDN (e.g., VMware NSX and Contrail) use tunneling technologies such
as VXLAN, STT ... (more)
In part 4 of our series on SDN, I discussed some of SDN's most commonly
asserted benefits. Here I'll look at the drawbacks, the majority of which are
organizational or financial and not technical. The most commonly cited
reasons for actively not deploying SDN are:
SDN requires significant staff re-training or recruitment. There are very
few staff with proven SDN deployment / management skills making recruitment
difficult and therefore re-training of existing staff is necessary. Of
course having retrained those staff, their retention with their new, highly
In part 3 of our SDN series, I covered virtual versus physical
infrastructure. This next segment will cover the three most commonly
propounded benefits of SDN: efficiency, agility and security.
Early, hyper-scale pioneers of SDN such as Google astounded the networking
community with the increased network utilization they achieved using SDN.
The industry norm for WAN link utilization is between 30% and 50%, whereas,
by deploying SDN, Google drove utilization up to 95% (without impacting
critical flows, losing traffic, etc.). This is primarily due to SDN’s
holistic vi... (more)