3 things you may have missed from the ‘Changing the Game for Cloud Networking’ event

3 things you may have missed from the ‘Changing the Game for Cloud Networking’ event

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The public-cloud centered concept of cloud computing has been debunked, as companies opt for hybrid cloud strategies and continue to invest in private on-premises data canters. According to Pluribus Networks Inc.’s “State of the Data Center Networking” report, 85% of companies are either adding on-prem data centers or modernizing existing ones.

But there is a problem: Traditional networking infrastructures weren’t designed to handle moving and securing massive amounts of data across dispersed environments. To address this issue, Pluribus is collaborating with Nvidia Corp. to redefine networking for the cloud computing era.

The company unveiled its vision for a unified cloud networking infrastructure on March 16 during theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio, and Pluribus “Changing the Game for Cloud Networking” event, which also marked the launch of Pluribus’ Unified Cloud Fabric. Adding the functionality of Nvidia’s BlueField-2 DPU (also known as the BlueField SmartNIC) to Pluribus’ Adaptive Cloud Fabric, the Unified Cloud Fabric takes a first step toward the unification of cloud networking, making it possible for companies to achieve the network agility, simplicity and availability that was previously only accessible to hyperscalers, according to Pluribus.

“With all the modern applications that are coming out, the distributed application environments, it’s really posing a lot of risk on these organizations to be able to get not only security, but also visibility into those environments,” said Bob Laliberte (pictured), senior analyst and practice director at Enterprise Strategy Group, in an interview with theCUBE. So getting operational efficiency from a unified cloud networking solution … is certainly going to help organizations drive that operational efficiency.”

In case you missed theCUBE’s live broadcast of  “Changing the Game for Cloud Networking,” here are three key insights from the event. (* Disclosure below.) 

Watch the complete interview with Bob Laliberte below:

1) Pluribus’ Unified Cloud Fabric provides a common OS across open switches and DPUs

The goal of Pluribus’ Unified Cloud Networking is to fix the fragmentation that occurs in dispersed cloud environments. The unified cloud fabric links on-prem private clouds (whether single or multi-site), public cloud(s), and edge devices, as well as overlay and underlay networks and servers and switches.

This is possible thanks to Pluribus’ open operating system Netvisor ONE OS, which has been relayed into Nvidia’s BlueField DPUs, which can then be inserted into servers to enable distributed security and pervasive visibility across clouds, on-prem and edge. This is akin to “putting a server inside a server,” according to Pete Lumbis, director of technical marketing at Nvidia, during an interview with theCUBE.

“The actual x86 host just thinks it has a regular [network interface card] in there. But you actually have this full control plane thing. It’s just like taking your top-of-rack switch and shoving it inside of your compute node,” he said.

The open nature of Pluribus’ architecture means that the company’s solutions, including the Unified Cloud Fabric, work on any hardware platform, with any workload, and in any virtualization environment.

“What Pluribus is trying to do is extending the network fabric from the switch to the host and have that single pane of glass for network operators to be able to configure provision, manage all of the complexity of the network environment,” said Ami Badani, vice president of marketing and developer ecosystem strategy at Nvidia.

Watch the complete interview with Ami Badani and Mike Capuano, Pluribus chief marketing officer, below:

2) Good fences make good neighbors: Unified Cloud Fabric separates network and compute

NetOps and DevOps aren’t exactly best friends. This is simply because the two teams do things in different ways. By separating compute from the network, Pluribus’ Unified Cloud Fabric also removes the need for NetOps and DevOps to compete.

“We’ve got this clean demarc[ation] where the DevOps folks get the services they need and the NetOps folks get the control and agility they need. So that’s a huge value,” said Mike Capuano, chief marketing officer at Pluribus, during an interview with theCUBE.

More importantly, it separates the virtualized networking infrastructure from the server CPUs so that network doesn’t take resources away from mission-critical processes. And, because running network services on a DPU provides higher performance benchmarks than running the same services on an X86 CPU, approximately 20-25% of the server capacity is freed up. This shrinks the power and compute footprint of the data center by approximately 20%, according to Alessandro Barbieri, VP of product management at Pluribus. Or, of course, a company can choose to reallocate those saved resources to run additional cloud workloads.

Watch the complete interview with Pete Lumbis and Alessandro Barbieri below:

3) Unified Cloud Network enables distributed security at the server level

Cybersecurity is the biggest issue facing the computing world, and network operators are at ground-zero of the battle. Traditional firewall security wasn’t designed for distributed environments, and stopping breaches is almost impossible. The Unified Cloud Networking architecture brings a new simplicity to network security by enabling zero-trust policies to be implemented at the server level, with pervasive visibility, microsegmentation, and distributed stateful firewalls.

“The reality is the network edge is the compute layer, not the top of rack switch layer,” said Lumbis, referring to how distributed models have changed security requirements. And by porting its open OS into the BlueField DPU, Pluribus is providing “a phenomenal enforcement point for security and policy,” he added.

“We believe we will have the industry’s only open, SDN-automated solution that unifies networking across data center switches and servers with distributed security, built-in automation, end-to-end visibility, and hardware-accelerated performance,” said Jay Gill, senior director of marketing at Pluribus, in an online post. “That’s what we mean by changing the game.”

Watch SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s complete coverage of the “Changing the Game for Cloud Networking” event on theCUBE’s dedicated event channel.  (* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner for the Pluribus “Changing the Game for Cloud Networking” event. Neither Pluribus Networks Inc., the  sponsor of theCUBE’s event coverage, nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Photo: SiliconANGLE

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