Insight: Data Center Connectivity in the Cloud

Posted by Mae Kowalke on Wednesday, March 11, 2015 with No comments

Cloud customers rely on low-latency, consistent data center connectivity for hosted storage, applications and desktops. Cloud connections increasingly traverse virtual networks, employing virtual network functions (VNFs) and shared physical infrastructure, orchestrated over a hybrid mix of legacy and SDN-aware network elements.

Given the dynamic nature of the cloud, performance can and does shift or degrade; it's subject to interfaces, interoperability and dynamic changes within layers of virtualization in the network. This poses a challenge for service providers, who need to differentiate their connectivity solutions through performance. Once that’s done, they can offer premium performance to both data center operators and their enterprise customers.

Easier said than done, though. To effectively optimize bandwidth performance and assure quality of service from IT closet to virtual machine, service providers must answer questions such as:

  • How can we most effectively deliver multiple and hybrid cloud services using vCPE and dynamic traffic engineering?
  • Why and how will SLAs migrate from connection QoS to the QoE of apps and the ultimately the browser experience?
  • How can we use NFV-based tools to permit deep packet inspection (DPI) and gain visibility into the network?
  • What's required to segment physical network performance so we can quickly isolate issues, from both physical and virtual vantage points?
  • What tools are available to restore full network visibility with standards-based network performance monitoring software agents?
  • How can we use micro-shaping for WAN optimization?
For insights into answering these questions, see: