Cisco Unveils Plans to Transform the Data Center
Cisco® (NASDAQ: CSCO) announced today a broad array of innovative new data center products and solutions that will enable customers to better utilize their data center resources, deploy more robust business continuance, build cost-effective storage area networks, and enhance data security. In addition, Cisco announced at a press conference today its vision for next-generation data centers, called Data Center 3.0. The Cisco vision for Data Center 3.0 entails the real-time, dynamic orchestration of infrastructure services from shared pools of virtualized server, storage and network resources, while optimizing application performance, service levels, efficiency and collaboration.
“Cisco’s success is built on listening to our customers and partners, and on understanding market transitions,” said John Chambers, chairman and CEO, Cisco. “Because the network is uniquely positioned to be the platform for the data center, we are investing in innovations to help our customers transform their data centers for improved efficiency and increased business productivity.”
Over the next 24 months, Cisco will deliver innovative new products, programs, and capabilities to help customers realize the Cisco Data Center 3.0 vision. New products and programs announced today support that vision, representing the first steps in helping customers to create next-generation data centers.
Cisco VFrame Data Center
VFrame Data Center (VFrame DC) is an orchestration platform that leverages network intelligence to provision resources together as virtualized services. This industry-first approach greatly reduces application deployment times, improves overall resource utilization, and offers greater business agility. Further, VFrame DC includes an open API, and easily integrates with third party management applications, as well as best-of-breed server and storage virtualization offerings.
With VFrame DC, customers can now link their compute, networking and storage infrastructures together as a set of virtualized services. This services approach provides a simple yet powerful way to quickly view all the services configured at the application level to improve troubleshooting and change management. VFrame DC offers a policy engine for automating resource changes in response to infrastructure outages and performance changes. Additionally, these changes can be controlled by external monitoring systems via integration with the VFrame DC web services application programming interface (API).
New Cisco “Trusted WAN Optimization” Software
The new Cisco Wide Area Application Services (WAAS) software release introduces the industry’s first “trusted WAN optimization solution” by offering highly secure wide area network (WAN) acceleration and accurate application performance management. Offering powerful encryption of data stored on Cisco WAAS devices, the new software enables IT teams to deploy WAN optimization across their organizations while preserving and strengthening branch security. To maximize application visibility and accurately measure ROI, Cisco WAAS also provides tight integration with NetQoS application monitoring products, delivering the industry’s first solution for end-to-end monitoring and acceleration of application traffic. Cisco WAAS is an application acceleration and WAN optimization solution that helps enterprises to consolidate costly branch office servers and storage into centrally managed data centers, while preserving local area network (LAN)-like service levels for remote users.
Enhanced Cisco ACE XML Gateway Software
The new Cisco Application Control Engine (ACE) Extensible Markup Language (XML) Gateway software delivers enhanced capabilities for enabling secure Web services, providing customers with better management, visibility, and performance of their XML applications and Web 2.0 services. The new software includes a wide variety of new capabilities and features plus enhanced performance monitoring and reporting, providing improved operations and capacity planning for Web services secured by the Cisco ACE XML Gateway.
18/4 Multiservice Module
The Cisco MDS 18/4 Multiservice Module provides eighteen 4-Gbps Fibre Channel ports and four Gigabit Ethernet IP storage services ports. It offers virtual SANs (VSANs), inter-VSAN routing (IVR), remote SAN extension with high-performance Fibre Channel over IP, integrated Cisco Multilayer Datacenter Switch (MDS) Storage Media Encryption (SME) as a distributed fabric service, advanced Fiber Connectivity (FICON) services, cost-effective Internet Small Computer System Interface (iSCSI) connectivity to Ethernet-attached servers, and a host of capabilities to optimize WAN resources for backup and replication. The module can reside in MDS 9500 Series directors or 9200 Series semi-modular fabric switches.
Cisco MDS 9222i Multiservice Modular Switch
With a compact form factor and advanced capabilities, the Cisco MDS 9222i Multiservice Modular Switch is an ideal solution for departmental and remote branch-office storage area networks (SANs). It provides an optimized platform for deploying high-performance SAN extension solutions, distributed intelligent fabric services, and cost-effective multiprotocol connectivity for both open and mainframe environments. The MDS 9222i provides eighteen 4-Gbps Fibre Channel ports, four Gigabit Ethernet IP storage services ports, and a modular expansion slot to host switching and services modules. The fixed slot of MDS 9222i offers the same features and functions as the MDS 18/4 Multiservice Module.
Cisco MDS 9134 Multilayer Fabric Switch
Designed for midrange to large enterprise customers, the Cisco MDS 9134 Multilayer Fabric Switch provides line-rate 4-Gbps and 10-Gbps ports at an affordable price in a compact one-rack-unit (1RU) form factor. With the flexibility to expand from 24 to 32 ports and optionally activate two 10-Gbps ports, the new Cisco fabric switch also provides VSANs, PortChannels, quality of service (QoS), FICON protocol integration, and security for cost-effective departmental and enterprise SANs. The Cisco MDS 9134 includes a Quick Configuration Wizard and provides built-in storage network management, with all features available through a command-line interface (CLI) or the Cisco Fabric Manager, and integration with third-party storage management tools.
Cisco Data Mobility Manager
The Cisco Data Mobility Manager (DMM) is a fabric-based data migration solution that transfers block data non-disruptively across heterogeneous storage volumes and across distances, whether the host is online or offline. With no host components to deploy, the time-consuming, costly, and sensitive task of installing and licensing hardware and software on servers is avoided. In addition, host central processing unit (CPU) and bandwidth cycles are available to the application in their entirety, so applications do not experience any deterioration in performance. By simply enabling the DMM feature on the Cisco MDS 9000 Storage Services Module located anywhere in the SAN, data migration can be configured without host agents, without rewiring, with minimal performance impact, and without downtime. The Cisco DMM provides transparent online data migration across heterogeneous storage arrays and centralized management with a graphical user interface (GUI) and wizard for easy configuration.
Cisco Storage Media Encryption
Cisco integrates Storage Media Encryption (SME) into Cisco-based SAN fabrics to offer seamless management of data encryption across multiple types of heterogeneous SAN-attached storage devices: disks, tape drives, and virtual tape libraries. By encrypting data in the network fabric, customers can secure data on media that lack native encryption capabilities, such as legacy tapes and disks. By using the Cisco SAN fabric, customers can eliminate the need to manage separate stand alone encryption appliances. Cisco SME technology is non-intrusive and works with existing backup applications. With an open application programming interface (API) for key management, Cisco SME also gives customers the flexibility to deploy stored, encrypted data solutions that best meet their operational needs.
Cisco N-Port Virtualizer
Based on an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) T11 standard, the Cisco N-Port Virtualizer (NPV) simplifies deployment and management of large scale SAN-attached Blade Server environments. An NPV-enabled Blade Switch presents itself as a Fibre Channel Host Bus Adapter (FC HBA) to the core SAN. This reduces the number of FC Domain IDs used, which improves SAN scalability, minimizes interoperability issues with the core SAN, and simplifies management. NPV is available on HP and IBM blade switches and on Cisco MDS 9124 and MDS 9134 Fabric Switches.
Cisco Smart Call Home
Smart Call Home is a new connected service feature available through Cisco SMARTnet that provides proactive, detailed diagnostics and real-time alerts on core network devices. Smart Call Home will be initially available on the Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches and will be offered on other Cisco products over time. Call Home devices continuously monitor network device health and automatically notify the customer of potential issues using secure transmissions. If a serious problem arises, Smart Call Home automatically generates a Cisco TAC service request that is routed to the right team for the particular problem. Smart Call Home also provides access to a web portal with personalized Call Home messages, recommendations, and more for all Call Home devices on that network. For more information about Smart Call Home please visit:
Cisco Data Center Assurance Program
The Cisco Data Center Assurance Program (DCAP) an industry-first system and solution-level testing program that involves all of the components necessary to implement and operate a data center infrastructure. DCAP benefits customers by enabling faster deployment, reducing risk, improving end-to-end stability and scalability, reducing downtime, supporting faster recovery, and enabling faster, more reliable technology upgrades. Cisco has created the DCAP program and validated network and systems architectures for LAN, SAN, Business Continuance, Optical Internetworking, Application Networking Services, global load balancing, and Wide Area Application Services (WAAS).
Channel Partner Specializations
As part of its Data Center 3.0 initiative, Cisco today announced it is building its data center channel specialization strategy around three key technology groups: network infrastructure, storage networking and application networking.
The new Advanced Data Center Networking Infrastructure Specialization enables channel partners to design, sell, install, and support a comprehensive data center solution based on Cisco Catalyst Ethernet switching platforms and Cisco Security.
The evolution of the Storage Networking Specialization into the Advanced Data Center Storage Networking Specialization incorporates the latest Cisco director class Fibre Channel product family training curriculum to train and enable channel partners to deploy and support intelligent SAN solutions.
Cisco is also in initial phase of development on a Data Center Application Networking Specialization designed to build partner competencies around fast growing application delivery network technologies such as the Cisco Application Content Engine (ACE). Together, the data center specializations will provide channel partners with enhanced technical competencies and a road map for building a robust data center practice.
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