Looking Forward to Networking Field Day 16

Networking Field Day is coming up next week, and we’re happy to have Pete Welcher returning as a delegate. He’s getting to revisit a company he saw at a previous event, Apstra and their intent-driven networking solution. Overall, Pete is looking forward to the presentations and talking to his fellow delegates.

Cisco’s SD-Access: All The Pieces

Drew Conry-Murray gives his thoughts on Cisco’s SD-Access. SD-Access is designed to automate common networking tasks in a campus network and is an ambitious project, but Drew is optimistic. Here, he discusses the supported hardware, the new dashboard DNA Center, as well as three additional pieces: APIC-EM, the Identity Services Engine (ISE), and the Network Data Platform.

Cisco SDA – Moving Software Defined to the Access Layer

Brandon Carroll attended Cisco Live US and Tech Field Day Extra where he saw a presentation on Cisco’s “The Network Intuitive.” Here, he describes what Software-Defined Access is and how it works as well as what he thinks of Cisco’s plan. He writes, “Complex network functions could be simplified if Cisco truly delivers SD-Access in they way they’ve described it… this could be a turning point for Cisco where they have a serious opportunity to be leaders in software defined network.”

Not The Cisco of John Chambers Anymore

Based on his experience at Cisco Live US, Tom Hollingsworth discusses signs of a very different Cisco under new CEO Chuck Robins. Robins’ focus on software over hardware and a more hands on leadership style will lead to big changes within this iconic company.

The Dawn of a New Networking Era

Jon Hildebrand was at Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live US. From what he saw of the presentation from Cisco at the event, they all fit into what Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins talked about in his keynote: Scale, Simplification, Security. John sees these points at play in the develops Cisco has made with ASICs, specifically in their new Catalyst 9000 line. By providing programmable ASICs that can easily add new features over time, a policy driven Digital Network Architecture Center management dashboard, and offering threat analysis on encrypted traffic, Cisco certain seems to have aligned their products around those three principals.

TFDx at Cisco Live 2017 – Part 1 (Preview)

Dustin Beare went to Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live US this past week. In this post, he gives a quick look at what he saw from Cisco at the event. This includes how the company is approaching ASIC design, the redesigned IOS-XE, which is now more container based for easier feature expansion, and a wide range of updates from the Cisco Digital Network Architecture platforms.

What I’m Looking Forward to at Cisco Live 2017

Scott McDermott is in Vegas and ready to take on Cisco Live. In this post, he shares what he’s looking forward to at the event. This includes a trio of Tech Field Day Extra presentations from Paessler, OpenGear, and NetApp.

NEW: The Podcast Domain and Other Fun Stuff at CLUS

We’ll be hosting a Tech Field Day Extra event from Cisco Live US next week in Las Vegas. Make sure to check out Cisco’s dedicated podcast space, the Podcast Domain! Sign up, and you can record your own content. Of course, if you can’t make it, make sure to follow along on our live stream!

Announcement: Tech Field Day Master Classes Live Online June 27

Tech Field Day Extra presentations are a great way to get focused technical discussion in the often hectic world of larger conferences and events. This year, Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live US, things are getting even more interesting. Cisco will be feating Distinguished Speakers at the presentations, so make sure to check back for the live stream to catch every one.

Update: June 2017

Dustin Beare is deep in the throws of preparing for his CCIE exam in September. That’s not stopping him from getting excited for Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live US. He’ll be getting a full firehouse of presentations from Cisco throughout the day, so make sure to check back with Dustin for updates. And here’s wishing him luck in September!

Programmable ASICs on Software Gone Wild

At Tech Field Day Extra with Cisco Live Europe, Ivan Pepelnjak sat down with Peter Jones, principal engineer at Cisco, for his Software Gone Wild podcast. In their wide-ranging discussion, they talk about why startups fail and NPUs vs ASICs. They then dig into a deeper discussion on the substantive differences and use cases for both. Overall it’s an interesting episode and well worth a listen.

To SD-WAN or Not to SD-WAN — and How?

Pete Welcher has been seeing a lot of competing SD-WAN solutions, including a lot from presentations at past Networking Field Day events. He runs down how to determine if these solutions are ideal for your operations. First, if you’re heavily investing in a lot of Cisco routers, just use IWAN. But for organizations with equipment coming to end of life or need ease of deployment without much more needed than routing and QoS, SD-WAN is worth a look. Make sure to read Pete’s piece for all the details.

3 Linux Foundation networking projects that your business needs to know

The Linux Foundation is home to a lot of interesting projects. A lot of these are projects started by private companies, but moved over to the Linux Foundation to help foster a more active community and development. Keith Townsend runs down three interesting ones for IT architecture. One that he saw at Networking Field Day last week was PNDA, which is a big data analytics project that came originally from Cisco. PNDA is designed to work across data centers, a scale out approach to big data. The Data Plane Development Kit came out of Intel, and helps improve networking performance on commodity hardware. Finally, he introduces Open vSwitch, which came from VMware by way of Nicira.

Cisco and Apple Agree: QoS Marking Is an Application Problem

Cisco and Apple announced the first fruits of their partnership at Cisco Live Europe. Ivan Pepelnjak wrote up his thoughts on the announcements. Overall, he was delighted to find that the two companies are letting admins bring QoS to apps on Cisco networks. He runs through some of the potential problems in the solution, but overall finds it well thought out.

Programmable ASICs in Cisco Switches

Jasper Bongertz attended his first Tech Field Day presentation while he was at Cisco Live Europe. At the presentation, he learned about what Cisco is doing with programmable ASICs, including their “Unified Access Data Plane”, which allows for encapsulation or decapsulation of packets dynamically without losing performance. Jasper also liked seeing support for Netflow directly in hardware. He thinks while it’s an important network management tool, its also vital for security considerations. Overall, he thinks Cisco has an interesting approach to making ASICs a little more flexible.

Vault7 Lessons – Zero Trust

Whenever you begin a piece about network trust with a quote from a Nicholas Cage film, you’re doing something right. Justin Cohen uses a quote from Con-Air as a springboard to the benefits of a zero trust network policy. He looks at how increased use of encrypted traffic requires a new methodology to secure networks, as it effectively kills deep packet inspections. Justin looks at solutions from Cisco and Illumio, which can be used as solutions in this new zero trust world.

Cisco Wants You to Use APIs and It Shows

Gabriele Gerbino attended Cisco Live Europe and at a Tech Field Day Extra presentation saw how Cisco is trying to simplify campus networks with Digital Network Architecture. He reviews how Cisco is bringing automation features specific for campus networks to their enterprise switches, and what the practical implications are.

LoRaWAN: Cisco’s Sensor Solution for IoT

Rich Stroffolino looks at some of the interesting ideas coming out of Cisco Live Europe. For their approach to IoT, Cisco is utilizing LoRaWAN, which allows for low power sensors to last up to 10 years on an embedded battery. For systems that only require infrequent send and receive, it’s a compelling idea.

Cisco and Apple Now Support Better Wi-Fi, QoS for Apps

Rich Stroffolino reviews the results of Apple and Cisco partnership after roughly a year. The two major announcement help add QoS to iOS apps, and improving wireless performance. The Fast Lane technology allows administrators to setup whitelists for specific apps. These apps mark outgoing packets with QoS qualifiers that will be recognized on a Cisco network, and otherwise won’t impede performance. Wi-Fi roaming is improved by using native Cisco Access Point intelligence on top of the already supports 802.11k/v protocols. Overall, its a promising initial set of announcements from the collaboration.

Thoughts on Consumer and Industrial IoT

Massimiliano Mortillaro shares some thoughts on the current state of IoT. From the enterprise side, he likes the fact that we’re leaving the pure hype phase of the segment, something that couldn’t be said in 2016. At Cisco Live Europe, he saw some very practical implementations, particularly Cisco’s LoRaWAN technology, which enables devices to operate up to 10 years on an embedded battery. He also considers some of the security and, perhaps most importantly, ecological considerations of the coming age of IoT. It’s a really interesting overview of the space, and will get you thinking about how to prepare for the coming IoT deluge of devices.