The Quest for Verification with Forward Networks

Forward Networks gave a presentation fresh out of stealth mode at Networking Field Day, and it certainly made an impression with Rich Stroffolino. He outlines how the company is doing their network monitoring. They model all possible places a packet can go on a network in a constantly updating software model. This allows you to not only react when problems occur, but also for better planning and provisioning, since you can model traffic very accurately in the software model. We’ll wait to see how their solution gets deployed in an actual enterprise, but on a theoretical level it’s fascinating.


Forward Networks – go ahead, break it

Amy Arnold laments the plight of the network engineer. The agonize over network design, try to come up with every conceivable failover scenario, and then deal with the consequences. Some have the aid of a lab to help test their configuration, most don’t. That’s why what Forward Networks presented at Networking Field Day was so interesting. It allows for you to model over your network in software, and then break it in every conceivable way. Forward’s model shows every a packet can possibly go, allowing the engineer to see exactly how a scenario will play out. She was justifiably concerned about how their product will be priced going forward, but otherwise it seems like a valuable tool in the engineer’s arsenal.


State of the Industry: Network Analytics

Gestalt IT just debuted a new feature, a weekly State of the Industry post. For their first week, they’re looking at the state of network analytics. They take a look at two competing methodologies to the problem. The first is SolarWinds NetPath tool, which sits in the network. The SolarWinds approach seems to take the ideas behind existing tools, and looks to perfect them. The other method is Forward Networks, which is presenting a top-down approach to do live mapping purely in software. Both are interesting, and point to further investment and development in the space going into 2017.


Forward Networks – Extraordinary Stuff!

Before November’s Networking Field Day, I was trying to find out anything I could about Forward Networks. They were in stealth until the week of the event, but I still thought I could find a few leaks or details about what they were up to, other than that they were a networking startup. Sadly, my Google-fu failed me, leaving me a blank slate for their presentation. As a delegate at the event, David Varnum was in much the same boat. To say he came away excited is an understatement. What Forward Networks does is make a complete and constantly updating model of your network. They do this by mathematically predicting every single location a packet can travel within a given network configuration. David goes into full details about why this is amazing, but the Forward Networks elevator pitch is pretty good: They’re doing for network mapping what Google did to web indexes.


Networking Field Day 13 – Sneak Preview

Tony Mattke wrote a nice preview of Networking Field Day, held just last week in Silicon Valley. He runs through all of the presenting companies, and tells us what he was looking forward to seeing. Give it a read to whet your appetite, then check out all of the video coverage here!


Looking forward to Networking Field Day

Scott McDermott is coming back for Networking Field Day and gives an overview of all the companies presenting at this event. Most exciting is a recent update to his post, Forward Networks just came out of Stealth Mode on November 14th, and they’ll be giving a highly anticipated presentation on the November 17th! Check out Scott’s post for what he’s looking for out of each of the presenting companies, and make sure you check back on the 17th and 18th for all the live stream action!


Networking Field Day 13: Previewing the Sponsors

Networking Field Day 13: Previewing the Sponsors