SDN shifts from configuration to analytics

Two SDN vendors have enhanced their offerings to improve visibility into virtual networks.

Midokura this week unveiled an upgrade of its Midokura Enterprise MidoNet (MEM) network virtualization software to provide visibility into encapsulated traffic in OpenStack clouds. And Pluribus Networks rolled out software designed to provide an operational view of the data center network for insight into application performance and troubleshooting, and enhancing forensic analysis and security.

The introduction of these products is an indications that SDN and network virtualization is going beyond ease, speed and flexibility of configuration and into operational insight for optimal application performance and quality of service.

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Midokura’s MEM 5.0, targeted at Infrastructure-as-a-Service clouds, features enhanced operational tools for OpenStack operators. Among its new features are analytics and visualization that communicate details of the state of the virtual network for any operational task, Midokura says.

OpenStack operators can view flow history through physical hosts, and virtual routers and bridges for troubleshooting and network performance evaluation. Usage reports provide cloud operators with visibility into network consumption ranked by highest tenant usage for showback or chargeback requirements.

Traffic counters provide operators with the ability to monitor bandwidth and examine the load on virtual objects in real-time. This is useful for operators to identify bandwidth abuse and proactively address issues that may affect network performance, Midokura says.

MEM 5.0 also includes port mirroring for virtual network monitoring and anomaly detection. Operators can mirror ports, bridges and routers, and output onto a deep-packet inspection firewall or intrusion detection system.

MEM 5.0 can also implement VM- and container-level security policies, and provision distributed network services that are fault tolerant, Midokura says.

MEM 5.0 is available now. Midokura’s customers include Blue Jeans Network, Dell, Colt Technologies and  

Pluribus is also offering flow-based operational views of the data center network with its VCF Insight Analytics application. Like MEM 5.0, VCF-IA is also designed for application-level visibility and insight to improve performance.

VCF–IA is available in two configurations, a stand-alone application on a server or an offering bundled with the Pluribus F64 collector appliance. The standalone application leverages APIs in the Pluribus Netvisor switch OS to extract the time-series metadata associated with every flow in progress throughout the entire fabric, and stores these in a data repository for future analysis.

VCF-IA includes a real-time analytics engine and drill-down navigation to allow any particular type of flow or individual event to be located and studied, Pluribus says.

When coupled with a Pluribus F64 collector, the application allows traffic from up to 64 10Gbps span/mirror ports to be captured and then converted into connections and flows for analysis.

Pluribus VCF-IA is available now as a perpetual or subscription-based offering.


Jim Duffy

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