EMC and Juniper Enhance SDN Platforms And Support OpenStack

EMC and Juniper recently revealed details of updates to their Software Defined Networking (SDN) platforms and strategies.

Juniper launched a suite of products branded JunosV Contrail featuring the following components:

•The JunosV controller decouples management of the network from the hardware that undergirds the network, enabling vendors to quickly deploy network services and more effectively manage the overall network infrastructure.
•JunosV Contrail virtualizes the entire network, thereby enabling vendors to leverage a more flexible network topology in conjunction with increased network scalability.
•The platform supports both OpenStack and CloudStack.

Meanwhile, EMC revealed details of the ViPR Software-Defined Storage Platform as follows:

•The EMC ViPR Software-Defined Storage Platform allows customers to manage both a software-defined networking infrastructure and data stored within that infrastructure.
•Integration with OpenStack via Swift by means of The EMC ViPR Software-Defined Storage Platform.
•Integration with VMware’s software-defined data center environment in conjunction with APIs that interoperate with OpenStack and Microsoft.
•The EMC ViPR Controller allows customers to use their current storage platforms for existing data, while enabling the provisioning of ViPR Object Data Services for new storage platforms that have the option of leveraging Amazon S3 or HDFS APIs.

Compatibility with OpenStack marks the key point of comparison between the two SDN platforms. Other key players in the SDN space include VMware due to its acquisition of Nicira, Cisco, Midokura, Nexenta Systems and Big Switch Networks. Customers should expect the SDN space to continue to deliver wave upon wave of functionality enhancements as SDN technology matures and becomes increasingly compatible both with a range of cloud platforms from myriad vendors in addition to IT automation software and DevOps platforms.

7 Key Features Of OpenStack Grizzly

OpenStack Grizzly was launched on April 4, 2013 and contains over 230 new features that enhance the OpenStack platform’s computing power and ability to integrate with other technologies. The release was enabled by the collective work of 517 contributors who merged 7,620 software patches. More than 45 companies employed developers that contributed to the release including Red Hat, Rackspace, IBM, HP, Nebula, Intel, eNovance, Canonical, VMware, Cloudscaling, DreamHost and SINA. Given that OpenStack is used in production environments by the likes of Best Buy, Comcast, CERN, HP, NSA and Samsung, the Grizzly release focused on supporting the day to day operational work required to manage IaaS platforms based on OpenStack distributions.

Key features of Grizzly include the following:

•Support for VMware ESX and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors, whereas previously OpenStack had focused on the KVM and Xen hypervisors.
•Support for bare metal provisioning
•Enhanced OpenStack compute scalability by means of “cells” that manage distributed clusters alongside a design that reduces the centrality of a core database via a “NoDB” architecture
•Enhanced ability to automate the management of storage platforms by means of quotas
•Ability to manage diverse storage platforms from a central point of access
•Support for additional third party storage solutions such as Ceph/RBD, Coraid, EMC, Hewlett-Packard, Huawei, IBM, NetApp, Red Hat/Gluster, SolidFire and Zadara.
•Advanced support for software defined networking (SDN) that allows users to write rules to configure networking infrastructures from a broad array of virtualized networking platforms that now includes Big Switch, Hyper-V, PlumGrid, Brocade and Midonet. Previously, OpenStack had supported the Open vSwitch, Cisco UCS/Nexus, Linux Bridge, Nicira, Ryu OpenFlow, and NEC OpenFlow SDN platforms.

Jonathon Bryce, Executive Director of the OpenStack Foundation, remarked on the maturity of the OpenStack software development process as follows:

The Grizzly release is a clear indication of the maturity of the OpenStack software development process, as contributors continue to produce a stable, scalable and feature-rich platform for building public, private and hybrid clouds. The community delivered another packed release on schedule, attracting contributions from some of the brightest technologists across virtualisation, storage, networking, security, and systems engineering. They are not only solving the complex problems of cloud, but driving the entire technology industry forward.

Here, Bryce notes how OpenStack Grizzly features important enhancements across a wide range of attributes such as virtualization, storage and networking. Central to these enhancements is a significant increase in OpenStack’s ability to integrate with other virtualization, storage and networking vendors in ways that dramatically enhance the attractiveness of the OpenStack product given the inherent heterogeneity of enterprise IT platforms. Expect subsequent releases to add more orchestration and automation to the OpenStack platform, most likely beginning with the Havana release in October 2013.