series mainframe in a futuristic representation light streamsseries mainframe in a futuristic representation light streams

SDN and the Data Center of the Future

Despite some recent obituaries published by my peers, software-defined networking is not dead. But perhaps certain aspects of it are dead or dying. If that’s the case, I say: “SDN is dead. Long live SDN.” Vendors and industry thinkers have pulled, stretched, and twisted the definition of SDN like saltwater taffy over the years. The original definition of SDN required the strict separation and consolidation of the network control plane in a central controller. This version of SDN never truly had its moment. Instead, vendors have created solutions that deliver many of the benefits of SDN without removing the control plane ...

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Newton's cradle. Red sphere hanging on threads hitting many blue ones. Leadership, power and uniqueness concept. Flat design. EPS 8 vector illustration, no transparency

Transforming End-User Support – What Does It Mean and What Is It Really About?

I admit, “end-user support” sounds kind of old-fashioned. But in many respects just the opposite is true. In the digital age the need for easy access to new services is on the rise, and even with a much ‘hipper’ (and increasingly impatient) end-user population, the need for support and guidance remains. It is just taking different forms than in the past. On October 4th I’ll be doing a webinar on this very topic. I’ll be looking at it from multiple perspectives, including the rise of a more diverse and strategic role for IT service management (ITSM) overall, as well as the ...

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Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence: The Promised Land for Lowering IT OPEX, Decreasing Operational Risk and Optimally Supporting Business Goals

What should machine and artificial intelligence (ML/AI) do for IT operations, DevOps and container management? The following table represents my quick outline of the key challenges and specific problem ML/AI needs to address. The table is based on the believe that ML/AI needs to look over the shoulder of IT ops, DevOps, and business management teams to learn from their decision making. In other words, every virtualization administrator fulfills infrastructure provisioning or upgrade requests a little bit differently. Please regard the below table as a preliminary outline and basis for discussion. At this point, and probably at no future point either, ...

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Avaya’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing points to a sale of its networking business


Avaya will restructure its debt under the protection of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. The company aims to emerge from this action intact with minimal impact on customers. However, it is very possible that Avaya will sell its network infrastructure business. Avaya is a leading enterprise voice and unified communications vendor with a significant portfolio of network infrastructure products that [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

Dell EMC Opens Door to Bare-Metal Campus Switching


Back when Dell EMC was still just known as Dell, its networking business staked out a leadership position by becoming the first mainstream switch manufacturer to embrace bare-metal data center switching. Now it’s moving into the bare-metal campus switching market, too. Dell disaggregated hardware and software in its data center switches, allowing network operators to choose [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

The Software-Defined Future of the WAN


Software-defined networking (SDN) exploded onto the scene five years ago with a tremendous amount of hype, but the transition from hype to reality has been a little less explosive. Most enterprises are still in evaluation mode with SDN. However, the SDN story is a little different when it comes to the wide-area network (WAN). The [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

How Network Infrastructure Teams Support the Internet of Things


[Editors Note: This blog post is sponsored by Infosim®, but the ideas expressed here are entirely my own] The Internet of Things (IoT) is not a new phenomenon, at least not in practice. It describes a network of everyday objects (or “things”) that have sensors, controls, and network connectivity. While technology companies only recently coined [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

Cisco DNA is Marchitecture, But Also a Shift Away From CLI


The industry has seen plenty of marchitectures from Cisco and its peers over the years. Its newest one, Digital Network Architecture (DNA), feels different, especially after I spent a week at Cisco Live 2016. DNA is different because underneath all the slideware and demos is an apparent commitment to changing the way enterprises do networking. [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

EdTech Networkers: Be Ready for Cloud, SDN, and IoT this Year


This sponsored blog post was originally published at at HelpSystems.com With summer almost here, it’s time for network infrastructure teams at K–12 school districts and higher education institutions to take stock of their infrastructure and think about what IT initiatives and trends will be impacting them through the next school year and beyond. Server virtualization [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

Preparing Network Management for SDN and NFV


[Editor’s note: This blog is sponsored by Infosim®, but the content is entirely my own] As enterprises advance from exploratory mode to actual deployment of software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV), they need to be thinking about how they will manage these new technologies. Over the last two years, Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

Early Adopters Define SDN


Greg Ferro recently blogged about how attempts to define software-defined networking (SDN) are a waste of time. He wrote: You can’t define “Software Defined Network” because its not a thing. Its not a single thing or even a few things. Its combination of many things including intangibles. Stop trying to define it. Just deploy it. [emphasis mine] [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

Network Managers Should be Monitoring Servers


Editor’s Note: This article was originally published by HelpSystems on February  2, 2016. Network monitoring is about more than just the network. The network management team needs visibility beyond switches and routers to ensure infrastructure health and performance. Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) research has found that 25% of IT organizations experience server- and storage-related service outages [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments

The Benefits of Leveraging MSPs for Performance and Security Monitoring


[Author’s Note: This post is sponsored by Edgeworx. The content is entirely mine.] One of the benefits of using a managed services provider (MSP) is the ability to add and subtract services as needed. MSPs typically have multiple areas of expertise that an IT organization can lean on. For instance, the organization could start by using the [...]



By | January 26th, 2017|Featured|0 Comments
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