Affinity networking — Beyond VaporWare

March 12th, 2013 | Plexxi | No Comments

Plexxi has built its datacenter networking solution on a simple premise: the reason the network exists it to allow elements in and around the IT infrastructure to talk to each other. Think about it this way: when a family member or non-technical friend asks what you do, you typically start by saying that things talk to each other. This colloquial way of describing the network is powerful – it signals a shift from providing connectivity to enabling conversations.

If the conversation is key, the question is how do you describe conversations? Who is participating? What is important about the conversation? Is the conversation permanent or does it come and go over time?

The language to describe these conversations is what Plexxi calls affinities.

If you ask many networking guys who is talking to whom on their networks, you will get bewildered looks and frustrated shrugs. One of the challenges in making conversations a focal design point for new networks is that information is not easily available. But that world is changing.

On Friday, March 15, we want to do a little show and tell. We want to show how we can harvest information from Boundary’s application monitoring solution and use it to automatically specify these affinities in a Plexxi network. We can get host names and MAC addresses from Boundary’s cloud-based solution, convert those into affinities, and then drive network optimization based on analytics coming from their meters.

The SDNCentral Demo Friday will include both Plexxi and Boundary. It should provide a bit of color, beyond just the words and slides, to help make some of these theories more concrete.

For more information, check out the SDNCentral event here.

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