The Emerging Corporate Data Center Challenge: How to Embrace the Service Provider Model

The IT world is moving toward a service delivery model.good customer said something recently that really got my attention:

IT infrastructure is moving quickly toward becoming delivered through a service model. Machines are becoming virtual running in secure data centers on large, partitionable machines.  Self-provisioned virtual IT resources are the key to success for a service model, which requires all aspects of the physical hardware to be abstracted or partitioned with permissions and given only to a tenant of the service.

– Eric Miller, CEO, Genesis Hosting

That is certainly a tall order, but underpinning this direction is the value to both end users and IT infrastructure providers of the self-service model of operations. The commercial service provider market, for example, Amazon S3, has used this model to successfully enable thousands upon thousands of organizations to buy IT services whether server, storage or networking on a “per drink” basis.

As end user organizations consider what the right solution is for them, I would like to offer a few questions to help identify the best means by which long term value and resiliency can be achieved:

·         Which architecture best supports these solutions?

·         What are the implications of self-service for product features and function?

·         What are the technical and management implications of a self-service based hosting model wherein the IaaS provider performs all           provisioning, configuration and management of virtualized IT resources?

A key driver in the on-going transformation of IT infrastructure is how to maintain resiliency in the face of the broad range of customers that need to be  supported while ensuring long-term cost efficiency.

OpenFlow Happenings: join us to learn about this transformative technology

 

Awareness of the benefits of OpenFlow continues to grow, and the ProgrammableFlow team will be making a number of appearances in the next few weeks to participate in the discussion.  We would love to have you join us.

First off, take a moment to follow our new Twitter handle at www.twitter.com/NEC_OpenFlow.

Samrat GangulyLive this week from where it all began – the Clean Slate Program, in conjunction with the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) hosted the Open Networking Summit 2011, October 17-19 at Stanford.  The sold-out program featured tutorials on OpenFlow/SDN for engineers, and NEC’s Chief Network Architect, Samrat Ganguly, was a featured speaker on Tuesday, from 2 p.m. to 3:30pm, on the topic of “Redefining Network Virtualization for Cloud and Datacenter Networks with OpenFlow”.  NEC and IBM demonstrated how OpenFlow can be used to build high performance, open, data center fabrics.  The ProgrammableFlow switch and controller were featured in a number of other demonstrations.

October 25 is the OpenFlow Symposium, streamed live via Packet Pushers from the Doubletree Hotel in Silicon Valley.  In addition to NEC, panelists include Google, Yahoo, Cisco, Big Switch and Juniper.  From 10 a.m. – 12a.m. will be a business discussion around practical and applied OpenFlow Networks, and then from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. will be a technical deep dive, again with a representative panel including NEC.   Both sessions will be archived at www.packetpushers.com.  This event is also sold out.

 

On October 27th, NEC will be hosting a dozen bloggers at our Santa Clara facility.  We’ll be reporting more later on this, and for sure you will be reading about us in the days to come.   Check out this link for Tech Field Day, which will be filmed live, and tweeted at length—you may want to add some of these Twitter feeds to your Follow list: http://techfieldday.com/.

Finally, I want to tell you about the Advanced TCA Summit, a free OpenFlow seminar planned for Tuesday, November 1 from 8:30-11:20 a.m., also at the San Jose DoubleTreee.  Register at https://www.expotracshows.com/advancedtca/2011 and use the code OPENFLOW.  Chaired by Craig Matsumoto of Light Reading, this free seminar will feature speakers from BigSwitch Networks, Broadcom, and NEC.  I will be addressing “Network Scale Out Using OpenFlow:  the Rise of the Superswitch” from 10:30 a.m. – 11a.m.

 

NEC and ESnet Present “OpenFlow with OSCARS” at Joint Techs 2011 Event

NEC and ESnet demonstrated network virtualization across wide-area networks at Joint Techs.Samrat Ganguly, Senior Systems Architect, for NEC Corporation of America (NEC) paired off this week with Inder Monga from ESnetat Joint Techs 2011 in Fairbanks, Alaskato present “OpenFlow with OSCARS:  Bridging the gap between campus, data centers and the WAN.” They were demonstrating for the first time end-to-end network virtualization across both LANs and multiple WANs, with the ability to program the network via ProgrammableFlow.  This has implications for both the researchers attending Internet2 Joint Techs, and their ability to connect and collaborate all the way through their networks, as well as enterprises implementing clouds across multiple data center sites in delivering IT services rapidly to their lines of business.

If you aren’t familiar with ESnet, it stands for the Energy Sciences Network, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science.  They provide high bandwidth connections that link scientists at national laboratories, universities and other research institutions, as they work together to solve the world’s biggest scientific problems.  Because of our OpenFlow expertise and capabilities, and dating back to NEC’s initial involvement on the Clean Slateprogram at Stanford University, we were invited to work with ESnet on this exciting virtualization and automation implementation.

Even though science networking uses network virtualization today, mismatches still exist between campus networks, HPC data centers and R&E networks.   These typically require manual intervention and limit network control and flexibility.   The presentation from Ganguly and Monga demonstrated end-to-end network virtualization and flow management, making networks much easier to manage and control.

In my experience, enterprise customers need to reduce the time required for network deployment, reduce operational complexity, and enable network level automation in supporting diverse application requirements.  Now, with the open source toolkit supplied by ESnet’s On-Demand Secure Circuits and Advance Reservation System (OSCARS), and ProgrammableFlow, together they will provide the automation and secure network service provisioning that scientists and industry need to maximize the full potential of cloud computing.

Networking researchers and administrators can access OpenFlow’s capabilities on ESnet’s Advanced Networking Initiative (ANI) testbed, using NEC ProgrammableFlow switches to test out advanced concepts in networking.  More information can be found at https://sites.google.com/a/lbl.gov/ani-testbed.   The media advisory about Ganguly’s presentation is at www.necam.com/pflow/press.ctm.

And for those of you who missed our press release announcing ProgrammableFlowat Interop, learn more about our award-winning Network platform based on OpenFlow at NEC website, or call today 866-632-3226 to set up at test of ProgrammableFlow at your own installation.

A Bold New Direction for NEC at Enterprise Connect

Enterprise communications is evolving at an incredible pace.  It seems only a few years ago we were all touting the benefits of voice over IP.  Today, our industry is about much  more than voice and data over the same network.  Of course, unified communications is that “much more,” giving us voice, status and presence information, messages in a single inbox, video and Web collaboration tools, social networking capability, and ideally the ability to go mobile with all of these features.

This week our industry’s largest event, Enterprise Connect, kicks off in Orlando with a new name and  vision, “Communications Transforming Business.”  It’s a fitting tagline  for a show that evolved out of voice-centric roots into a much broader array of topics, as UniCom Consulting’s Marty Parker points out this week on NoJitter.com, and one that also aligns with the direction NEC is demonstrating at booth 609.

UCC_AgentToday, NEC Corporation unveiled a new Unified Communications & Collaboration architecture, which is being demonstrated in booth 609 at Enterprise Connect.  Using Rich Internet Applications (RIA) technology, UC&C fits into today’s secure Web architectures and can be deployed either on-premise, in the cloud or a combination of both.  It gives users a unified client across any device – smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC.  The client itself is designed to be simple, elegant and intuitive based on the user’s role.  It’s definitely worth a look if you are at Enterprise Connect this week.

Also worth a look are our speakers – we have five of them this year in the Enterprise Connect program.

“IP Telephony RFP: Who Delivers the Goods?”

  • Monday, February 28, 2:00 – 5:00 PM (Wade Irwin) in Osceola A

“Comparing UC Options: Who’s Offering What?”

  • Tuesday, March 1, 2:30 – 5:30 PM (Gary Gordon) in Osceola A

“The Role of Tablets in Enterprise UC”

  • Tuesday, March 1, 2:30 – 3:30 PM (Gary Gordon) in Osceola B

“Unified Communications Interoperability: What’s Needed?”

  • Wednesday, March 2, 8:00 – 8:45 AM (Todd Landry) in Sun B

“Integrating Mobility and UC RFP”

  • Wednesday, March 2, 2:30 – 5:30 PM (Sheryl Teague) in Sun B

And the Winner Is….

altI guess you can say there’s a competition for just about everything in the world.  Hot dog eating, wife carrying, ugliest dog and fastest computing.  Although NEC hasn’t won a best beard contest in a while we just won first place at the HPC Challenge with our Earth Simulator. 

Our “Earth Simulator” you ask? 

Allow me to give you the technical answer: The Earth Simulator is a parallel vector computing system that was launched in March 2002 at JAMSTEC. The renewed Earth Simulator, put into operational use in March 2009, consists of 160 nodes of the SX-9/E system with a theoretical peak performance of 131TFLOPS, which also boasts the world fastest CPU core of 102.4GFLOPS.

Now allow me to translate: A really fast computer that would probably be a killer gaming PC.

 Press Release

 HPC Challenge Website