It's Buddy Week

Partnerships bloom to tackle data center and cloud networking needs

It’s ecosystem partnership week. And data center stalwart Mellanox, SDN start-up Plexxi and Cisco partner vArmour have all delivered.

Mellanox buddied up with Cumulus Networks to add Cumulus Linux NOS to its new Spectrum 10/25, 40/50, and 100 Gbps Ethernet switches. Mellanox itself has made multiple contributions of 10/25, 40/50, & 100G Ethernet switch and Open Compute Platform (OCP) adapter designs.

Cumulus Linux has been chosen by several hardware and software vendors as a NOS option when opening up switches to support multiple NOSes. In addition to Cimulus Linux, the Mellanox Spectrum switches can now run OpenSwitch, Metaswitch IP Routing, and Mellanox MLNX-OS through the OCP Switch Abstraction Interface and Linux Switchdev.

Plexxi this week lined up product integrations VMware, Hortonworks and Nutanix. The link ups are aimed at providing programmable network fabrics for converged infrastructure and storage environments in scale-out cloud deployments.

Distributed storage like that implied in the Plexxi partnerships is killing the traditional FibreChannel SAN market, says Plexxi CEO Rich Napolitano. Earlier generation storage solutions don’t have the capacity and required latency for today’s distributed IP storage deployments, he claims.

Indeed, much of the 44% CAGR in converged infrastructure market will come at the expense of FibreChannel, Plexxi says, citing data from Wikibon. FibreChannel SAN leader Brocade might argue that the technology's death is premature: the company saw SAN revenue exceed expectations, driven by strong customer demand for FibreChannel storage array capacity, in its first fiscal quarter.

Nonetheless, the new Plexxi integrations are available in software called Plexxi Connect integration packs. They will be available in 30 days.

An integration between vArmour and Cisco is intended to provide Cisco’s ACI application policy fabric with security analytics for granular visibility, control and threat detection in virtual environments. ACI and vArmour’s DSS Distributed Security System together will enable network security teams to visualize all traffic at the application layer, detect anomalous behaviors, and quarantine non-compliant workloads and advanced persistent threats, the companies say.

Cisco’s own research found that, by 2019, 86% of workloads will be processed by cloud data centers. Security architectures must be adaptable to that trend, Cisco and vArmour say.

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