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Connecting a World of Clouds

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CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUARY 2015
How Cisco and Its Partners Are Extending the Value of
Cloud Technologies and Env...
CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
IT teams are tasked wi...
CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
The ecosystem would be...
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Connecting a World of Clouds

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Extending the connectivity of clouds beyond the hybrid cloud to the Intercloud promises unparalleled opportunities for global business acceleration, monetization, growth, and services scalability. In order to realize the opportunities, Cisco is leading the development of an Intercloud ecosystem in collaboration with technology providers, cloud providers, ISVs, and developers. It's the right time to be Intercloud-ready.

Extending the connectivity of clouds beyond the hybrid cloud to the Intercloud promises unparalleled opportunities for global business acceleration, monetization, growth, and services scalability. In order to realize the opportunities, Cisco is leading the development of an Intercloud ecosystem in collaboration with technology providers, cloud providers, ISVs, and developers. It's the right time to be Intercloud-ready.

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Connecting a World of Clouds

  1. 1. CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUARY 2015 How Cisco and Its Partners Are Extending the Value of Cloud Technologies and Environments
  2. 2. CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. IT teams are tasked with providing infrastructure, applications, and services to employees, partners, and customers. This can be accomplished via private or public cloud, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Private clouds offer the ability to host business- critical data and processes, but require active management. Public clouds offer on-demand use and low cost, but require substantial relinquishment of corporate control. Hybrid cloud, today’s cloud model of choice, seeks to bridge the divide between private and public clouds. Yet the fragmentation among various public, private, and hybrid clouds remains, leading to challenges with: • Workload portability. Workloads are locked into the cloud fragments in which they reside, because they cannot be ported seamlessly to other clouds. • Vendor lock-in. Customers are locked into cloud vendor platforms that may not continue to provide the desired pricing, services combination, or user experience. • A globally uniform user/customer experience. A global firm may not be able to ensure a uniform user/ customer experience because of fragmented platforms, segregated providers, and regional compliance requirements. • Service delivery. Cloud providers’ services cannot be delivered beyond their regional footprint because of the scarcity of mechanisms required to collaboratively deliver the services across regional boundaries in revenue-sharing models with other cloud providers. • Application monetization. Independent software vendors (ISVs) and developers face limitations on scaling their applications to profitability. In order to address these challenges, we must extend the hybrid cloud model (one private and one public) to many clouds (any mix of private and public, with any combination of platforms and providers). In this extended model, resources and services can be freely developed and consumed across the continuum of connected clouds. Global business growth will be spurred by unlocking a great deal of unrealized business value for everyone. And previously unforeseen levels of on- demand resources, service scalability, monetization, customer experience, and policy compliance would be achievable on a global scale. This paper explores the idea and outlines a vision for an Intercloud ecosystem, its benefits, Cisco’s leadership, and progress to date. Introduction We live in a world of many clouds, but they are still largely isolated. This has created fragmentation surrounding the types of clouds (public, private, hybrid), hosting and management entities (corporate IT, cloud providers, managed service providers), and platforms (Amazon AWS, Windows Azure, Google App Engine). It has also resulted in user experiences and benefits that differ from one cloud to another. Workload portability, freedom from vendor lock-in, and a global user experience matter to customers, while service delivery and application monetization have implications for cloud providers and software developers.
  3. 3. CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. The ecosystem would be somewhat like airline alliances, where participating airlines contribute complementary geographic connections, seat capacity, regional food offerings, and resource pooling to offer code-shared flights that achieve capacity utilization, diversity of services, and increased profitability for participants. Cisco has been leading the development of a similar ecosystem of Intercloud partners, constituting cloud providers, technology providers, ISVs, and developers. Each plays a unique role in the ecosystem: • Technology providers would connect clouds, enable service and application acceleration, and develop technologies for customer experience management. • Cloud providers, like airlines, would operate in their own geographic footprint, but will leverage applications and services offered by other cloud provider partners and offer complementary performance and compliance SLAs. • ISVs would make their applications available to a broader array of customers in a variety of consumption models. • Developers would leverage application-centric technology platforms, workload portability among clouds, and open application programming interfaces (APIs) to develop new applications that will be delivered by the ecosystem’s cloud providers to global customers. In essence, the ecosystem aims to deliver capabilities that individual participants cannot deliver on their own. For example, consider a Canadian multinational firm that wants to use a single mobile sales app across its regions, with centralized management and a consistent user experience. With workload portability, an ISV in India can easily and efficiently partner with a firm in South Korea to develop and test the app across different kinds of clouds. The app workload can then be deployed and managed in an enterprise-grade cloud by independent cloud providers in Brazil, the United Kingdom, and Australia, while maintaining compliance with regional standards and optimizing workloads. As a result, everyone benefits. The IT department for the Canadian multinational company will deliver a competitive advantage for its sales force. The software developers will grow exponentially by scaling their apps globally. And the cloud providers will realize new monetization opportunities and attract new customers. Using another example, consider a hospital patient in the Middle East in need of a time-sensitive surgery that requires real-time supervision from expert doctors located in the United States. The hospital in the Middle East would need to securely share patient information with a U.S. hospital system across healthcare-grade clouds in order to plan the surgery. The surgery itself would require an SLA-backed, low-latency, high-definition video link between the hospitals for surgeon collaboration across continents. In order to make this possible, two regional cloud providers from the Intercloud ecosystem could collaborate to provide managed telehealth services and leverage pre- validated, surgery-assist applications— optimized across clouds and across networks—to deliver the desired medical outcome. The Intercloud Ecosystem Built for the Internet of Everything The Intercloud ecosystem will be truly built for the Internet of Everything (IoE). The ecosystem will be capable of delivering the right services to address the value created by the multitude of connections among people, data, processes, and things on a global scale. For more information, visit internetofeverything.cisco.com. In order to integrate the fragmented world of many clouds, we need a symbiotic Intercloud ecosystem, wherein each participant brings unique expertise, technologies, services, applications, and regional knowledge to the table, and shares in the larger business opportunities created.
  4. 4. CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. The value unlocked by the ecosystem would be much larger than the individual contributions of the participants. As a result, ecosystem customers as well as all ecosystem contributors will benefit. Customers, irrespective of the size of the business, would have a wider array of reliable services and applications from which to choose, accelerating their business ever further. The applications will be available for easy consumption via catalogs or marketplaces, with an option for a single pane of management across multiple cloud domains. Also, customers will be able to choose partners from the ecosystem of providers and have the option to move their workloads to desired clouds, thus reducing their risk of vendor lock-in. Specifically, for multinational firms, there would be additional benefits of globally uniform delivery of user and customer experiences balanced with regionally managed data sovereignty. • Technology providers would enjoy business growth by enabling connectivity and application acceleration across clouds. • Cloud providers would benefit from new monetization opportunities and lower customer churns. There will be unprecedented economies of scale, opportunities for capacity utilization, and ways to expand service delivery. • ISVs and developers would achieve profitability faster. With a standardized ecosystem ready to test and scale their applications globally, ISVs and developers would dramatically accelerate time to revenue, as well as time to profitability. Also, with open APIs that optimize infrastructure attributes, the ISVs would be in a position to build differentiated, high-performance applications. Although it may take some time for all the benefits to be evident, the demonstrated advantages of the hybrid cloud model have proven the value of cloud connectivity. As result, a number of technology partners and cloud providers are coming together and the Intercloud ecosystem is already taking shape. How Everyone Will Benefit
  5. 5. Accelerate Applications with Cisco ACI Applications that scale across clouds require an approach that spans clouds as well as the networks that connect them. Cisco ACI offers a holistic architecture with centralized automation and policy-driven application profiles, and delivers software flexibility with the scalability of hardware performance. For more information, visit cisco.com/go/aci. CISCO INTERCLOUD WHITE PAPER JANUA RY 2015 © 2015 Cisco and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Cisco led such an initiative in the 1990s, helping connect fragmented LANs into a global “network of networks” that evolved into what is now the Internet. Cisco is now working to advance the Intercloud ecosystem and connect countless clouds around the world. The company’s objective is to bring together the best technology, services, applications, and providers to deliver unprecedented customer benefits. The ecosystem is rapidly gaining momentum in two ways: 1. Getting the right technology in place 2. Striking the right partnerships The Right Technology Cisco is leading the charge to put the right technology in place for the Intercloud ecosystem, with a focus on connectivity among clouds, infrastructure to accelerate application deployment, adoption of open standards, and deployment methodologies. A critical element of Intercloud advancement is Cisco Intercloud Fabric, a software product that connects clouds and allows workload portability across clouds for any hypervisors and any providers. It offers end-to-end security with consistent policy enforcement as well as unified management and governance. Cisco Intercloud Fabric enables choice, consistency, control, and compliance across clouds. Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (Cisco ACI™ ) is also an essential aspect of the Intercloud. Cisco ACI fundamentally changes the way networks are managed and the way they behave, using predefined policies to automate network provisioning. This creates a more agile infrastructure that can dynamically support diverse application needs across diverse physical and virtual environments. Through a policy-driven model, the network can cater to the needs of each application, and can do so across multiple environments. Cisco ACI is entirely centered on application requirements, considering not only virtual machines, but compute, storage, and network resources as well as security, quality of service (QoS), access control, compliance, and automation policies. Cisco will be providing open APIs that will be available to ISVs to leverage Cisco ACI capabilities for the development of new applications. Cisco is also leveraging open standards like OpenStack.1 Cisco and Red Hat have partnered to simplify the process of building cloud infrastructure using the Cisco Unified Computing System™ (Cisco UCS® ) and Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform.2 In addition, Cisco has been an active contributor to OpenStack projects like Neutron. In conjunction with technology partners, Cisco has developed modular Vblock and FlexPod solutions that allow rapid and modular deployment of infrastructures.3 Cisco Hybrid Cloud bundles offer customers the ability to readily adopt the hybrid cloud. These solutions provide enterprise and mid-market customers with a defined path to the Intercloud. Also, Cisco has already announced plans to offer Cisco Cloud Services with and through Cisco partners.4 The Right Partnerships Just like past Cisco initiatives, the Intercloud ecosystem is partner driven. Cloud provider partners will contribute with their infrastructure footprint, geographic reach, and customer expertise. Major global companies like Telstra, Dimension Data, Deutsche Telekom, BT, NTT Data, and Equinix have already announced plans to partner with Cisco, and Cisco is aggressively recruiting partners to give the Intercloud ecosystem a global reach. Cisco’s large community of channel partners is already engaged. Finally, as the ecosystem develops critical mass to provide a global platform for application development and delivery, Cisco will extend its outreach to ISV and developer partners to enhance the assortment of applications and services offered. The partner offerings will complement Cisco applications like Cisco WebEx and provide customers with a rich variety of applications and services to choose from in multiple consumption models. The Ecosystem is Gaining Momentum Connect Clouds with Cisco Intercloud Fabric Cisco® Intercloud Fabric allows secure workload portability across heterogeneous clouds. For example, it lets businesses extend their own data centers to create a hybrid cloud and allows providers to do the same for their customers. For more information, visit cisco.com/c/en/ us/products/switches/intercloud- fabric/index.html.
  6. 6. Extending the connectivity of clouds beyond the hybrid cloud to the Intercloud promises unparalleled opportunities for global business acceleration, monetization, growth, and services scalability. In order to realize the opportunities, Cisco is leading the development of an Intercloud ecosystem in collaboration with technology providers, cloud providers, ISVs, and developers. Critical technology components, such as Cisco Intercloud Fabric for connecting clouds and Cisco ACI for accelerating application delivery, are already in place. A variety of partners, including Telstra, Dimension Data, Deutsche Telekom, and BT are now collaborating and more are joining every month. The ecosystem is rapidly moving toward the vision of delivering virtually unlimited resources, applications, and services from partners across the globe under a variety of consumption models in a symbiotic collaboration. It is time for any business to be Intercloud ready, and the Intercloud ecosystem offers the ideal way for differentiated technology providers, service providers, ISVs, and developers to leverage their competitive differentiators for lasting growth. For more information, please visit www.cisco.com/go/cloud. Conclusion Extending the connectivity of clouds beyond the hybrid cloud to the Intercloud promises unparalleled opportunities for global business acceleration, monetization, growth, and services scalability. Cisco and the Cisco Logo are trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. A listing of Cisco’s trademarks can be found at www.cisco.com/go/trademarks. Third-party trademarks mentioned are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company. (1007R) 1 http://www.cisco.com/c/dam/en/usa/products/collateral/switches/nexus-7000-series-switches/wp_openstack.pdf 2 http://newsroom.cisco.com/release/1486565/cisco-and-red-hat-deliver-integrated-infrastructure-for_3 3 http://newsroom.cisco.com/release/1494528/cisco-adds-over-30-intercloud-partners-including-deutsc_2 4 http://newsroom.cisco.com/release/1373639

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