May 20, 2013

Not all unified Network Architectures are really so simple

So I’ve blogged quite a bit about the simplicity of our OneFabric architecture. As I sum this up I hope you really see the difference. Below, I just did a quick recap of what we do against one of our competitors in the market whose messaging I heard at this year’s Interop keynote. Their message sounded similar to ours (single policy, single management, etc.) but in reality it is radically different and a lot more complex.

A real-life comparison paints a very clear picture: Notice how Enterasys keeps network operations simpler by using fewer protocols and products to get more done.

Policy Management CampusSame Policy (and same MIB to manage) on all access (fixed and WiFi) and core devices managed by, one integrated solution, OneFabric Control Center – with one Data BaseMultiple products, different implementations and multiple data bases: Cisco Prime, ISE, and ACL – with separate QoS configuration for wired and wireless access
Policy Management Data CenterAgain, one simple way for all products and all levels: Policy (as before) on all data center switches managed by OneFabric Control Center Integration with server via OneFabric Connect DCMAgain, multiple ways depending on products and the level of policy. VNMC managing ACL but no QoS, different OS on Nexus vs. Catalyst, various methods to integrate with server
Virtual Switching in the CampusVirtual Switch Bonding VSBVSS on the Catalyst line
Virtual Switching in the Data CenterVirtual Switch Bonding VSBvPC, vPC+ on the Nexus line
Fabric mesh protocol for the Campus CoreShortest Path Bridging IEEE 802.1aqTBD
Fabric mesh protocol for the Data CenterShortest Path Bridging IEEE 802.1aqFabric Path on the Nexus 7k line
Campus Interconnect for Layer 2GRE/L2 or SPBVPLS Virtual Private LAN Services on top of MPLS
Data Center Interconnect for Layer 2GRE/L2 or SPBOTV Overlay Transport Virtualization
Data Center East/West traffic optimizationFabric Routing – VRRP based, no new protocols requiredProxy Routing – Nexus 7k only
Data Center Interconnect path optimizationFabric Routing with IP Host Mobility – Host Routing based, no new protocols requiredLISP Locator ID Separation Protocol
SummaryLeverages fewer protocols and tools – easy and simple to implementAlmost twice as many tools, protocols and proprietary extensions required to achieve the same goal


As a great man once said “Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”  At Enterasys, we have worked very hard to make our network operations very simple – using fewer protocols and integrated tools. We believe this approach provides a simpler and high quality user experience. And it allows  IT staff, to spend less time on operational tactics so that they are focus on more fun and strategic projects that are beneficial to the business so IT and the network becomes an important asset and not just a cost center.

About The Contributor:
Markus NispelVice President Solutions Architecture and Innovation

Markus Nispel is the Vice President Solutions Architecture and Innovation at Extreme Networks. Working closely together with key customers his focus is the strategic solution development across all technologies provided by Extreme. In his previous role he was responsible as the Chief Technology Strategist and VP Solutions Architecture for the Enterasys Networks solutions portfolio and strategy, namely NAC Network Access Control, SDN Software Defined Networks, DCM Data Center Management, MDM Mobile Device Management Integration, OneFabric, OneFabric Connect and OneFabric Data Center as well as the network management strategy. This position is tied to his previous role in Enterasys as Director Technology Marketing and as a member of the Office of the CTO. In addition to this role he advises key accounts on a worldwide basis in strategic network decisions. Before its activity for Enterasys Markus Nispel was active as system Engineer at Cabletron Systems. Markus Nispel studied at the university of applied sciences in Dieburg and graduaded 1996 as Dipl. – Engineer for communications technology. He collected first professional experience at E-Plus Mobile Communications within the group of network optimization of their DCS cellular mobile network.

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