In the rapidly changing world of network operator SDN, broad support across the vendors whose gear powers complex hetereogeneous networks is a key goal. Today, Cyan’s Blue Planet revealed an important step in that direction by adding support for two of the most important of those vendors: Cisco and Juniper.
Using CLI and NETCONF/YANG as the interface, Cyan’s SDN orchestration platform can now automate the Ethernet functionality of a range of both Juniper’s MX and Cisco’s ASR and ME platforms. That takes them beyond the comfort zone of their partners and greatly expand the sort of existing networks their SDN software is applicable to. Cisco and Juniper gear is everywhere, and not being able to automate it would definitely be a major limiting factor in potential adoption.
SDN and NFV are rapidly remaking the infrastructure of the internet, but have obviously had the greatest effects in homogenous, green field projects where everything is designed to work together from the ground up. More complex, multi-vendor networks are quite a bit more difficult, especially given all the consolidation we have seen over the years. The many languages a single controlling entity has to be able to talk to reach all the devices is daunting to say the least.
By adding support for Juniper and Cisco, Cyan is making a play to be the one to do that. While it’s limited to the Ethernet services side of things so far, they expect to broaden support for things like IP services in time. Of course, there are a few more big vendors out there they will probably also need to be adding support for if they want to make a clean sweep.
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