Here’s our snapshot of the past week’s news in software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV).
1. ONF Goes Wireless
The Open Networking Foundation added a Wireless and Mobile Working Group. As with the Optical Transport Working Group, it’s a case of OpenFlow and SDN reaching into parts of the network beyond plain old switches and routers.
As noted by SearchSDN, the wireless group will investigate SDN’s applicability to cellular, Wi-Fi, and wireless backhaul networks, including the case of unified wired/wireless campus network for the enterprise. The group is also interested in the evolved packet core (EPC), which coincidentally has been a frequent subject of NFV discussions.
2. EMC Still Likes VMware
In lieu of creating a public cloud offering, EMC is opting to resell VMware‘s vCloud Hybrid Service, as Network World reported. EMC will resell other cloud services too, but VMware is apparently the designated No. 1 option.
The level of surprise here is pretty much zero, considering EMC owns about 80 percent of VMware. Network World’s Brandon Butler points out (quoting Stuart Miniman of Wikibon) that it’s “like a parent selling their child’s Girl Scout cookies.”
(By the way, we’ve heard frequent rumors about EMC starting its own networking division. In an email to SDNCentral this week, an EMC spokesman flat-out denied that any such division was forming.)
3. Pluribus Crosses the Pond
Startup Pluribus continues assembling the pieces of a real business. The company signed Big Technology as a distributor in the U.K. market, according to NFVZone — that’s on the heels of executive appointments including CEO Kumar Srikantan.
Pluribus hasn’t fully disclosed its products yet, but the company seems to be working on a data-center fabric consisting of Ethernet switches that need no external SDN controller.
Big Technology is a new player, an offshoot of the equally un-Google-able Exclusive Networks. Big is focusing on the “datacentre,” as they spell it over there. It launched in October with customers including Extreme Networks, Nutanix, and Silver Peak.
4. And Furthermore
… It’s time to stop citing Google, Amazon, and the like as use cases for SDN, writes Greg Ferro of Packet Pushers fame. They’re just too different from your enterprise.
… Harkening back to cold-war politics, blogger Lisa Caywood argues that SDN needs its Charles de Gaulle, a leader to band together the parties that aren’t taking sides with any superpower. (“Superpower” in this case meaning Cisco, VMware, and — my opinion — possibly other behemoths like Oracle.) That role could even be filled by a vendor, if done correctly.