Dealing with the complexity that virtualization brings

Bringing it together with Unified Network Management.

There have been a ton of changes recently in network security on the consolidation and virtualization front, changes that have brought with them a slew of benefits from admin and cost points of view but changes that have also increased complexity – and with it, decreased the ability for organizations to fully innovate and collaborate. And so one of the things to look for when it comes to security management is whether you can maintain consistency around the things you do while still eliminating some of the devices within your environment to achieve the innovation and collaboration you want.

Maybe, for instance, you can have virtual firewalls supporting multiple different domains but still running discreetly on the same physical box. Part of the challenge here, from a security standpoint, is to give you the capability to keep the bad stuff out and good stuff in but also to keep information from crisscrossing when it shouldn’t. Can you, if you will, create that firewall, maintain data integrity and separate, manage and secure very different domains even though they’re running on the same physical equipment? [Read more…]

It’s time for a little housekeeping on the data center floor.

What’s Unified Fabric Networking technologies?

 As the number of data, applications and servers in data centers have increased, so have corresponding storage and networks. Couple this with an increasing appetite for Virtualization and networking seems to have been a bit forgotten.  As organizations look to condense platforms and applications the demand on networking and storage connectivity continues to increase.  Most organizations have separate fabrics, and redundant networking switches, for their IP data and SAN connectivity.  This adds additional complexity and equipment in the environment that has to be managed, monitored and controlled.

 The place has gotten crowded to put it mildly and it’s reduced the flexibility of organizations to adapt to changing business needs – like getting onboard the cloud.

 One answer to this housekeeping challenge has been a new standard called Data Center Bridging (DCBx), which collapses IP and Storage networks (regardless or protocol) down to a single common network infrastructure and unifies all these disparate networking fabrics – eliminating a lot of switches, cables and more.

 This converged infrastructure – or Unified Fabric Networking as it’s often called – is really about unifying the fabrics of connectivity on the data center floor so that as much as possible works through one single wire. Now you’re able to provision any connectivity you want across that wire. No longer do you have to bring down a machine and recable or bring in more switches. It can all be done elastically and dynamically. [Read more…]