Welcome!

Eclipse Authors: Cynthia Dunlop, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, XebiaLabs Blog, Ken Fogel

Blog Feed Post

Device Packages: Integrating F5 Synthesis with Cisco APIC

#ACI #SDAS #devops #SDN Because something's got to change - and change radically.

budget-lights-onAccording to a recent IDC report, OPEX costs are doubling every eight years. Important to consider is this data is based on historical trends, and doesn't necessarily take into consideration the forthcoming explosions in applications and data resulting from technological shifts like the Internet of Things.

Even so, it's no wonder that almost every study done on IT budgets pegs operating expenses - the "keep the lights on and apps running" kind of operating expenses - at upwards of 70% of the total budget.

Something, obviously, has to change - and change radically.

Cloud, devops and SDN all point organizations in the same direction - operationalization through automation, orchestration and ultimately, integration via open, standards-based APIs and protocols.

That's ultimately the goal of Cisco's Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) strategy, which seeks to address the challenges in scaling networks and services not only from a technology perspective, but from a people perspective. Part of the reason for the significant chunk of IT budgets that is spent on operations comes from the reality that configuration - the state of the network - is spread across tens and hundreds and sometimes thousands of myriad network devices. From layer 2 to layer 7, organizations use a veritable cornucopia of network and application services to keep the business running by delivering the applications upon which business relies.

Deploying an application can take days or weeks because of the coordination required across not just the devices themselves (and whether virtual or physical makes no never mind as configuration is agnostic with respect to form factor) but across what are increasingly siloed IT teams: operations, security and networking.

Cisco's ACI aims to reduce the friction that slows down service deployment by centralizing policy control and coordination and automating provisioning and configuration of services across the entire L2-7 landscape.

Yeah, that's a pretty big ask.

But Cisco isn't planning on doing it alone.

IT TAKES an ECOSYSTEM

The centerpiece of Cisco's ACI strategy, APIC, provides the means by which all the various L2-7 services in the data center can be easily integrated with virtually no disruption to existing service architectures. It manages this feat by enabling providers of those services, like F5, to develop a device package (similar to a plug-in) to an open specification that APIC can consume and use to communicate and coordinate application-specific policies.

A device package is two pieces: the device model (an XML file) and a device script (written in Python). The device model describes in a standardized, APIC-consumable format what functions are available in the device script. Then APIC can call on those functions to provision the services specified by the open source policy and the device script in turn communicates with the provider of those services using whatever mechanism they choose. In the case of F5 Synthesis, that's our open, standards-based API iControl.

apic-synthesis-integration

Today, what we've announced, is an F5 device package for the Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC). Initially the device package supports three services:

1. L4-7 load balancing

2. SSL offload

3. SharePoint Deployments 

The SharePoint deployment is unique because in addition to the standard use of iControl to provision the service, customers get the expertise that comes with thousands of SharePoint deployments all bundled up into a nice neat programmable iApp. That means best practices for a highly optimized SharePoint deployment are packaged up and provisioned through Cisco APIC. 

The device package model is extensible, so services in the F5 Software Defined Application Services portfolio can be easily added to a Cisco ACI architecture in the future.

COEXIST

The magnitude of the tectonic shifts in technology today has never been this disruptive (just count the number of #hashtags we've got going on Twitter these days) since the dot com days. And now we've got both our web-scale architectures to worry about while we try to prepare for the coming hyper-scale architectures. But we can't abandon ship and start anew, we've got to maintain what we have while we go forth and conquer. That means architectures that can bridge the gap between the existing and the new, that can insulate applications from the massive disruption that comes whenever anything substantially changes the way we build and manage the foundation of both IT and business today: the network.

F5 Synthesis is that bridge. It's the abstraction layer capable of delivering yesterday's applications while enabling tomorrow's. By integrating with Cisco ACI, F5 Synthesis allows customers to operationalize the entire network and start migrating to the policy-based, application-driven network architectures so necessary to succeed in an app and "thing" economy without compromising on security, performance or availability of both existing and new applications.

The F5 Device Package for Cisco APIC will be available as a free download via downloads.f5.com in summer 2014.

 

 

*Budget statistic http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9243312/How_to_balance_maintenance_and_IT_innovation

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Lori MacVittie

Lori MacVittie is responsible for education and evangelism of application services available across F5’s entire product suite. Her role includes authorship of technical materials and participation in a number of community-based forums and industry standards organizations, among other efforts. MacVittie has extensive programming experience as an application architect, as well as network and systems development and administration expertise. Prior to joining F5, MacVittie was an award-winning Senior Technology Editor at Network Computing Magazine, where she conducted product research and evaluation focused on integration with application and network architectures, and authored articles on a variety of topics aimed at IT professionals. Her most recent area of focus included SOA-related products and architectures. She holds a B.S. in Information and Computing Science from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ReadyTalk, a leading provider of online conferencing and webinar services, has been named Vendor Presentation Sponsor at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ReadyTalk delivers audio and web conferencing services that inspire collaboration and enable the Future of Work for today’s increasingly digital and mobile workforce. By combining intuitive, innovative tec...
There is growing need for data-driven applications and the need for digital platforms to build these apps. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Muddu Sudhakar, VP and GM of Security & IoT at Splunk, will cover different PaaS solutions and Big Data platforms that are available to build applications. In addition, AI and machine learning are creating new requirements that developers need in the building of next-gen apps. The next-generation digital platforms have some of the past platform needs a...
Almost two-thirds of companies either have or soon will have IoT as the backbone of their business in 2016. However, IoT is far more complex than most firms expected. How can you not get trapped in the pitfalls? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will introduce a holistic method of IoTification, which is the process of IoTifying the existing technology and business models to adopt and leverage IoT. He will drill down to the components in this fra...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pulzze Systems will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Pulzze Systems, Inc. provides infrastructure products for the Internet of Things to enable any connected device and system to carry out matched operations without programming. For more information, visit http://www.pulzzesystems.com.
I'm a lonely sensor. I spend all day telling the world how I'm feeling, but none of the other sensors seem to care. I want to be connected. I want to build relationships with other sensors to be more useful for my human. I want my human to understand that when my friends next door are too hot for a while, I'll soon be flaming. And when all my friends go outside without me, I may be left behind. Don't just log my data; use the relationship graph. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Boyd, Engi...
The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace.
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
From wearable activity trackers to fantasy e-sports, data and technology are transforming the way athletes train for the game and fans engage with their teams. In his session at @ThingsExpo, will present key data findings from leading sports organizations San Francisco 49ers, Orlando Magic NBA team. By utilizing data analytics these sports orgs have recognized new revenue streams, doubled its fan base and streamlined costs at its stadiums. John Paul is the CEO and Founder of VenueNext. Prior ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Numerex Corp, a leading provider of managed enterprise solutions enabling the Internet of Things (IoT), will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Numerex Corp. (NASDAQ:NMRX) is a leading provider of managed enterprise solutions enabling the Internet of Things (IoT). The Company's solutions produce new revenue streams or create operating...
WebRTC adoption has generated a wave of creative uses of communications and collaboration through websites, sales apps, customer care and business applications. As WebRTC has become more mainstream it has evolved to use cases beyond the original peer-to-peer case, which has led to a repeating requirement for interoperability with existing infrastructures. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Graham Holt, Executive Vice President of Daitan Group, will cover implementation examples that have enabled ea...
IoT offers a value of almost $4 trillion to the manufacturing industry through platforms that can improve margins, optimize operations & drive high performance work teams. By using IoT technologies as a foundation, manufacturing customers are integrating worker safety with manufacturing systems, driving deep collaboration and utilizing analytics to exponentially increased per-unit margins. However, as Benoit Lheureux, the VP for Research at Gartner points out, “IoT project implementers often ...
The Jevons Paradox suggests that when technological advances increase efficiency of a resource, it results in an overall increase in consumption. Writing on the increased use of coal as a result of technological improvements, 19th-century economist William Stanley Jevons found that these improvements led to the development of new ways to utilize coal. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Thiele, Chief Strategy Officer for Apcera, will compare the Jevons Paradox to modern-day enterprise IT, e...
SYS-CON Events announced today the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp, being held November 1-2, 2016, in conjunction with 19th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but with hands-on demos and detailed walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of real world use cases prototyped using Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Spark, and Intel Edison. Y...
Complete Internet of Things (IoT) embedded device security is not just about the device but involves the entire product’s identity, data and control integrity, and services traversing the cloud. A device can no longer be looked at as an island; it is a part of a system. In fact, given the cross-domain interactions enabled by IoT it could be a part of many systems. Also, depending on where the device is deployed, for example, in the office building versus a factory floor or oil field, security ha...
Is your aging software platform suffering from technical debt while the market changes and demands new solutions at a faster clip? It’s a bold move, but you might consider walking away from your core platform and starting fresh. ReadyTalk did exactly that. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, will discuss why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue and over a decade of audio conferencing product development to start an innovati...
Fifty billion connected devices and still no winning protocols standards. HTTP, WebSockets, MQTT, and CoAP seem to be leading in the IoT protocol race at the moment but many more protocols are getting introduced on a regular basis. Each protocol has its pros and cons depending on the nature of the communications. Does there really need to be only one protocol to rule them all? Of course not. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, walk you through how Oct...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
Identity is in everything and customers are looking to their providers to ensure the security of their identities, transactions and data. With the increased reliance on cloud-based services, service providers must build security and trust into their offerings, adding value to customers and improving the user experience. Making identity, security and privacy easy for customers provides a unique advantage over the competition.
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...