Cisco goes digital with network architecture DNA

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Networking major Cisco announced the Digital Network Architecture (DNA) at Cisco Partner Summit 2016, San Deigo.

The US-based networking giant dealing in switches, routers, and other hardware related network gear for enterprises and telecoms aims to explore emerging technology areas like software defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) and analytics.

Cisco said DNA is a software-driven architecture for digital business solution based on automation, virtualization, analytics, managed services and open APIs that allow customers to use features in security, Internet of Things (IoT), mobile, and location-aware analytics strategies covering the core, WAN, access edge, branch office and security areas.

DNA comes within the Cisco ONETM Software family, enabling software-based licensing, and helping with investment protection and flexibility including an automation platform and applications, an array of cloud-based management services, and NFV.

Alongside DNA, the 31-year-old company also launched automation, virtualization, and Cloud management capabilities for the architecture and has given leverage to customers and business leaders to make a shift to digital business.

“CISCO DNA brings together virtualization, automation, analytics, cloud, and programmability to build that platform. The digital network is the platform for digital business,” said Rob Soderbery, SVP for Enterprise Products and Solutions at Cisco.

Cisco said DNA starts with the available APIC-EM Automation Platform which automates installation of equipment and services. The Plug and Play (PnP) application which provides an integrated solution for enterprise network customers to automate new branch or campus rollouts can be installed and configured, backed by Cisco’s Catalyst switches and wireless products with Base plug and play automation available now, and a cloud controlled version availability in May.

Cisco and its channel partners will ship equipment to customer sites, where they can be plugged in by a user devoid of technical skills, and the hardware will automatically download configuration and installation instructions over the Internet, to boot up and configure a vLAN without manual intervention.

Cisco’s available IWAN wide-area network automation product, is a software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) product based on policy definition of an application’s relevance to the business, automates setting up a WAN, with policies, profiles, automation, and built in automated trouble-shooting.

The APIC-EM controller can update QoS consistently across the network in milliseconds, allowing IT to deliver a differentiated application experience. QoS [Quality of Service] with automated QoS policies will be available later this month.

Cisco is using the StealthWatch automated tool, which was a portion of the networking giant’s Lancope acquisition last year, for security.

Also, moving from security at the edge of the network to embedded security in every part of the network, the $49 billion-company has implemented micro-segmentation of security architecture similar to competitor VMware and others. Also, the integration with TrustSec on devices allows the network to enforce policies and quarantine issues.

Cisco also revealed CMX Cloud, with tracking ability of the WiFi usage on the network, primarily for enterprises in industries such as retail, hospitality, healthcare, education, and even government agencies.

Customers can deploy Cisco or third-party services either on Cisco purpose-built appliances or on UCS E-Series or UCS C-Series servers using the Cisco Enterprise Service Automation application.

Cisco uses a centralized orchestration platform which can be run on third-party VNFs, for managing, and troubleshooting virtual and physical functions, running on Cisco Systems’ own ISR 4000, UCS, or any standard x86 platforms. CISCO also adds routing, firewall, and WAN optimization.

Vina Krishna
[email protected]