In my last blog I had discussed Brocade’s multi-pronged approach towards Open clouds, and today I want to dig deeper into the various networking architectures that support the approach. One of the top requirements that cloud has put on networking architectures is the requisite to provide multitenancy at scale. Multitenancy is nothing but ensuring each tenant’s traffic remains private while the tenants are sharing a common infrastructure. The implementation of this requirement has been relatively straight-forward in compute but in networking we have seen multiple ways of solving this: primarily spilt between native network based solutions v/s. overlay solutions. Instead of forcing a single architecture down the customer’s throat, Brocade believes in providing a choice of multitenant solutions for greater network architecture flexibility and therefore it provides solutions for both these architectures.
Let’s first start with the native, network-based solution we provide which we call VCS Virtual Fabrics. The way Brocade has implemented VCS Virtual Fabrics ensures that it is very simple to use by today’s networking teams. The semantics is similar to VLANs therefore there is no relearning of new technology. Furthermore, since Virtual Fabrics are built on top of VCS Fabric technology, customers can deploy it non-disruptly through a software upgrade on their existing VDX 6740s or 8770 switches. Lastly, because this solves a networking requirement within the network architecture, there is no confusion of support and responsibility - this is appreciated by both the server and networking teams.
To learn more about VCS Virtual Fabrics, please check our white board video:
And it is great to hear that the customers agree about these advantages as well. Here is Bit-isle outlining how Virtual Fabrics was easy to use and how they were able to deploy it non-disruptly.
Now, for customers adopting overlay architectures such as VMware NSX, Brocade provides an integrated and high-performance gateway solution that unifies the virtual and physical environments by converting tunnel connections into IP connections for bare metal servers running non-virtualized applications, physical storage devices or specialized hardware running network services.
Unlike some other VXLAN solutions out there, Brocade’s solution includes a tight integration with the NSX controller wherein the controller pushes down the configuration to gateway. Also, since the gateway functionality is built on VCS fabric, you get all the resiliency and automation advantages of the fabric. Here is Zeus Kerravala from ZK Research talking through some of these advantages:
In closing, these are disruptive times but there is lot of excitement in delivering the above technology-agnostic solutions and in helping customers deploy what they need today and non-disruptly transition towards cloud and SDN architectures.