A Whack Upside The Head

April 28, 2010 at 1:57 pm 3 comments

“Speak softly and carry a big stick.”
– Theodore Roosevelt
___________________________________

It’s amazing how our perspectives change once we get the right stimulus…

I remember in 2007 having network engineers gently trying to explain to us that we had rocks in our head.  “Networking is hardware, and x86 hardware will never have the packet performance we require,” they said.  (Others intoned the same thing, but were far less genteel with their tone.)

But it takes thick skin to change a paradigm, and Vyatta’s is rhino-class.  After six major releases of our software and goodness-knows how many turns of Intel’s powerful crank, we’ve proven our point with many hundreds of operational customer networks now running Vyatta.    We’ll call that our “heavy lifting period.”

Then the stick of virtualization smacks the industry across the head and Lo and Behold it turns out networking is software.  And with that overt discovery comes this covert truth:  Network virtual machines are all running on x86 hardware.

Now here we with Spring 2010 approaching, and Panel 3 of the cartoon is in full bloom.  Our latest announcement is that Vyatta virtual machines run on Riverbed appliances.  Customers are planning their rollouts of hundreds or thousands of Vyatta VMs, leveraging our the new Vyatta Remote API.  Push a button, and BAZINGA! another networking VM springs to life.

For people relatively new to the industry Vyatta seems a very logical way to do things.  No stick required.  But for the majority of the industry Vyatta introduces a degree of liberation normally reserved for escaped conscripts.

As I write this people are walking the floor at Interop in Vegas and coming to the Vyatta booth.  Roughly a third of them come to say hi and talk about the cool things Vyatta has let them create – cool solutions, cool business offerings.  The other two-thirds come to hear what all the ruckus is about.

It’s fun when the stick is on your side ;-)

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Version 6 Breaks Through Virtualization Levels The Network Playing Field

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jamie  |  May 4, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    L3 networking may be software; however, isn’t L2 networking still hardware?!? Isn’t that why switch manufacturers like ADTRAN and Arista Networks can exist?

    Reply
    • 2. Kelly Herrell  |  May 5, 2010 at 11:48 am

      Good point… Ultimately it’s all software; it just depends on what kind of hardware is executing the instructions.

      While traditional switches are still proprietary boxes, virtualization is beginning to modify things. In a virtualized world, the control and forwarding planes of switches are beginning to deconstruct. Virtual switches are forwarding at the VM level using software now (VMware has one, Cisco has one (Nexus 1000v), and others are coming). And once the vSwitches are doing their thing, they’re doing it on a server.

      Reply
  • 3. The humorous side of IT | TechRepublic  |  July 8, 2011 at 6:08 am

    [...] you just don’t see too many IT people running around putting pen scanners up their nose or whacking someone upside the head. Perhaps the greatest example of “acceptable” IT slapstick humor is the cartoon of a [...]

    Reply

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