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Showing posts from May, 2018

Five Design Principles for the Network Architect - Availability

(#2 of 7)

In the first post in this series, I shared a summary of my fundamental design principles which I try to apply to every network design I am involved in.  The follow-ups to that summary post will discuss these at greater length - this one addresses Network Availability.
The network exists to provide the transport for endpoints to be able to consume services in a "remote" location.Whether the endpoints are application servers in racks in a DC trying to consume database entries, wireless clients accessing an application in the data centre, sensors collecting data and dropping that data into storage, and regardless of location of the services themselves - public cloud, private cloud, co-lo DC - the fundamental measure of success of the network is availability of the service to the endpoint and thus the user.
Clearly then availability can't be considered a simple measure of the network as a whole - it takes a number of capabilities and properties of the environment …

Call to Arms!

Completed a great couple of days in labs and discussions with fellow travellers on the journey to the programmable network!  We were in London on a Cisco Cat 9K/DNA Center Programmability course, with the legend that is John Swartz (of Boson tests and Cisco books fame).  He really started opening our eyes to the possible, looking at how through the magic of Python it is possible to run event-driven processes on LAN switches, orchestrate the management capabilities of DNA Center, and build platform-agnostic configurations using YANG models, then deploy them over NETCONF.

This stuff really brings it home what is there now and what will be possible in the networks of the 2020s.  It's time to start assembling the ideas to build out the real tangible network service that we can offer customers so that they can consume the networks the way they need to for their business.  Zero-touch provisioning for IoT.  Software overlays for abstracting the complexities of the network transport and p…