Cisco has announced a new architecture that extends the data centre to everywhere that data lives and everywhere applications are deployed.
The company has highlighted that application innovation is at the heart of the digital economy. A new era of apps is redefining what data centres are and need to be capable of supporting. Because today, the data centre is no longer a fixed place. It exists wherever data is created, processed and used.
To bring this ‘data centre anywhere’ vision to life, Cisco is introducing a range of innovations across networking, hyperconvergence, security and automation.
- The expansion of ACI into the cloud with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure environments
- The extension of HyperFlex into branch offices and remote locations to power applications at the edge
- Enhancements to CloudCenter to help customers manage the life-cycle of applications across multiple cloud environments
- A radically simpler way for customers to buy and manage the technology across the entire data centre architecture, via a single Enterprise Agreement
“Enterprises should be able to deploy applications based on the needs of their business, not the limitations of their technology,” said Osama Al-Zoubi, Chief Technology Officer, Cisco Middle East and Africa.
“Customers want to deploy applications and manage data across a range of diverse platforms, from on-premises to cloud-based. That is why we are taking the ‘centre’ out of the data centre. Today, Cisco is helping our customers expand their reach into every cloud, every data centre and every branch.”
New data centre innovation
Cisco is delivering on its new data centre vision in three ways:
- ACI available in AWS and Azure: Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) is Cisco’s intent-based networking solution for the data centre. It delivers operational simplicity, application agility and protection in the data centre – all delivered in a uniquely open approach that integrates with all hypervisors and container frameworks on which applications are deployed. With ACI Anywhere, that journey extends ACI to any workload, any location and any cloud. Virtual ACI already supports bare metal clouds and remote edge locations. And now with the new Cloud ACI capabilities, Cisco extends automation, management and security to AWS and Microsoft Azure by fully integrating with their Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) environments.
- HyperFlex for branch: Deploying hyperconverged infrastructure to multiple sites in order to provide distributed computing at a global scale can be a complex task. HyperFlex with Cisco Intersight now allows customers to seamlessly extend computing and storage from their core data centres to the edges of their operations. It does this with flexible scalability and the unmatched ease-of-use of cloud-powered systems management. HyperFlex now delivers data centre-class application performance for digital innovation in branch offices and remote sites, enabling analytics and intelligent services at the enterprise edge.
- CloudCenter Suite: The operational complexity and burgeoning cost of managing applications across multiple public and private clouds is a growing challenge for IT teams. The new CloudCenter Suite now features full application lifecycle management, greater workflow automation and significantly enhanced cost optimisation and governance. Finally, the new suite is also much easier to consume, with simplified deployment, tiered pricing and a new SaaS offering.
New data centre enterprise agreement
Cisco is making it easier than ever for customers to buy its data centre technology with the new Cisco Enterprise Agreement. Customers can now take advantage of a single standardised three- or five-year licensing agreement across seven suites, including ACI, HyperFlex, Intersight and Tetration. The Cisco EA provides customers with choice in deployment models and license portability across physical, virtual or cloud deployments. It lets customers have access to what they need, when and where they need it, available from their preferred channel partner.
Cisco is extending ACI to the application layer and the campus. Now, ACI integrates with AppDynamics to correlate app performance with network health. It also integrates with Cisco DNA Centre and the Identity Services Engine to deliver end-to-end identity-based policy and access control between users or devices on campus and applications or data anywhere. These integrations are the latest step on Cisco’s journey to create the industry’s first multi-domain architecture. The goal is to reinvent enterprise infrastructure as a unified system that unlocks innovation by simplifying the unprecedented complexity of modern IT.