Enterprise Networking Week in Review: SDN, NAC, Cisco Switching, and VM Visibility

June 24 – 28: We covered big SDN and Cisco news, NAC and Dell security, virtual machine visibility, and more.

By Jude Chao | Posted Jun 28, 2013
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Jude ChaoWith Sean Michael Kerner covering Cisco Live this week, Enterprise Networking Planet covered plenty of big networking news. Here's your weekend wrap-up. Sit back, catch up, and let it all sink in.

SDN

OpenDaylight, the open source Software Defined Networking project, made a couple of big announcements, key among them the addition of some new members and the unveiling of new Virtual Tenant Networks technology, as Sean reported. Networking startup PLUMgrid came out of stealth mode with $10.7 million in funding and an overlay approach that eschews OpenFlow in favor of VXLAN. Cisco and Insieme, meanwhile, launched an "application-centric" SDN approach. It will leverage Cisco technology, which now includes Dynamic Fabric Automation and a new Nexus 7700 switch. Cisco also announced a new switching platform, the Catalyst 6800. It's "the 6500 on steroids," Cisco's senior director of marketing for enterprise networking told Sean, and its ASIC will offer programmability with Cisco's SDN efforts.

All this SDN news leads to one burning question: what will the mainstreaming of SDN mean for the networking workforce? Nothing good, argues guest contributor Marcus Austin. Marcus contends that Software Defined Networking will "annihilate the networking workforce." The first response is in, from no less than Omar Sultan of Cisco and the OpenDaylight Project. Have your own thoughts on Marcus's prediction? Leave them in the comments section!

Security

Dell had some big security news this week with the announcement that the vendor intends to bake its Dell Data Protection (DDP) endpoint security suite in to all of its commercial PCs. DDP now comes enhanced with an innovative malware prevention solution from Invincea and a host of other new features. Dell claims this will make its commercial PC portfolio the most secure in the world, as company representatives told me.

Endpoint protection isn't the only thing an enterprise needs to secure its data and its network, of course. Network access control (NAC) is making a comeback thanks to BYOD. I spoke with the CMO of ForeScout, a NAC market leader, to learn what next-generation NAC can offer the enterprise.

Network visibility

Gaining network flow visibility is key to network administration, but virtualization and virtual machine traffic have made it a more challenging task than it once was. Gigamon believes they have an answer to the problem. This week, the vendor released its GigaVUE-VM 2.0 solution, which provides visibility into all parts of the network, including VM-to-VM traffic. GigaVUE-VM 2.0 also offers other capabilities to optimize bandwidth utilization.

FTP, fasp, and big Hollywood file transfers

As workforces become more distributed and workflows involve teams collaborating from ever more far-flung locations, large file transfers become a challenge. How do you move big files quickly and securely from country to country and continent to continent? This is a problem Hollywood faces on a regular basis. FTP is often less than ideal for the moving of huge video files from set to post-production facility to producer's office, for example. Aspera believes they offer a better solution with their fasp technology, as I learned this week. The production company behind MythBusters seems to agree, as do many other major entertainment companies.

Thanks for following our enterprise networking coverage this week. Be sure to join us again next week for our guide to automating network operations to create greater agility for the cloud, as well as for the latest and greatest in networking news and reviews. Until then, happy weekend!

Jude Chao is Executive Editor of Enterprise Networking Planet. Follow her on Twitter @judechao.

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