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Big Switch Networks extends support for vSphere Integrated Containers with SDN-based Big Cloud Fabric

Announcement posted by Big Switch Networks 19 Apr 2017

Austin, TX -- DockerCon -- April 18, 2017 -- Big Switch Networks®, The Next-Generation Data Centre Networking Company, today announced it has extended Big Cloud Fabric™ (BCF) container networking support to vSphere Integrated Containers. Earlier this year, Big Switch announced multi-container networking support for Mesosphere DC/OS and Kubernetes container orchestration platforms, including Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform with Big Cloud Fabric.
As the demand for container technology accelerates in enterprise and service provider data centres, a next-generation networking architecture is required to keep up with the rapid lifecycle of container instantiation, elasticity and retirement. BCF leverages software-defined networking (SDN) to provide one big “logical switch” governed by a centralised controller. This solution delivers simplified network operations, visibility and telemetry of containers and their hosts, and network automation for rapid application and micro-services deployment.
"Integrating containers with VMware vSphere provides the best of both worlds for production IT deployments, the agility and portability of containers along with proven security and operations-friendly workflows," said Prashant Gandhi, Chief Product Officer, Big Switch Networks. "When Big Cloud Fabric is deployed as the physical network in this environment, customers can operate the network at the speed of containers due to BCF’s built-in automation and zero-touch operations, while gaining enhanced container-level visibility and rapid container-to-container troubleshooting across the fabric."
With vSphere Integrated Containers, organisations can leverage existing infrastructure to run containerised apps along with traditional applications on the same infrastructure, as well as tools, policies and processes to manage containerised applications in production. With BCF, customers can achieve the same operational benefits for their networking infrastructure hosting a mix of both traditional VM and containerised workloads. In container environments, the BCF controller enables physical network automation as well as deeper visibility of container-to-container traffic across the network, via integration with vSphere Integrated Containers.
Big Cloud Fabric is the optimal networking fabric for multiple VMware solutions via a single point of integration for the entire fabric. In VMware environments, BCF connects with the VMware vCenter® API to provide physical network automation and end-to-end network visibility for VMware vSphere®. The Big Cloud Fabric controller directly integrates into VMware vCenter™ to simplify and automate application deployments on its physical SDN fabric and physical networks. The following aspects of the network are automated, requiring zero intervention from VM or network admin:
  • Automatic ESXi host connectivity with fabric using LAG/MLAG
  • Automatic Layer 2 network configuration
  • Automatic network policy migration for vMotion
The integrated VMware visibility provided by Big Cloud Fabric enables network and virtualisation administrators to rapidly resolve cross-domain issues, while vSphere Integrated Containers provide critical enterprise container infrastructure to help IT Ops run both traditional and containerised applications side-by-side on a common platform. With vSphere Integrated Containers, IT teams can avoid expensive and time-consuming re-architecture of infrastructure that results in silos. When coupled with BCF, the same physical infrastructure can be logically provisioned to be orchestrated under different VMware environments for different workloads, including vSphere, vSphere + NSX, vSphere + vSAN, VMware Integrated OpenStack, and now vSphere Integrated Containers. The networking infrastructure can be scaled-out on demand and newer workload types can be added dynamically.
The scale-out architecture of BCF accommodates future-growth in east-west traffic, caused by an increase in deployment of micro-services. Benefits of running vSphere Integrated Containers on top of Big Cloud Fabric include:
  • Automated provisioning of physical network in tandem with virtual networking used by vSphere Integrated Containers
  • Network admin visibility into container workload VMs, Virtual Container Host (VCH) infrastructure VMs, resource pools and vApps
  • Container-container fabric tracing for both network and vSphere admins
  • Analytics of VIC events for network admin for historical replay
  • Support for multi-tenant environments with vSphere Integrated Containers and Big Cloud Fabric
  • Seamless interoperability with Docker tools that are used to deploy VMware Integrated Containers.
Supporting containers in their virtualised environments provides a number of benefits: IT teams get the security, isolation and management of VMs, while developers enjoy the speed and agility of containers - all within vSphere. vSphere Integrated Containers are run as VMs to leverage vSphere’s core capabilities: security, networking and resource management for a production environment. BCF as the physical network infrastructure brings the same automation and visibility benefits for the container VMs as for the traditional VMs by leveraging the integration of BCF with vSphere.
About Big Switch Networks
Big Switch Networks is the Next-Generation Data Centre Networking Company. We disrupt the status quo of networking by designing intelligent, automated and flexible networks for our customers around the world. We do so by leveraging the principles of software-defined networking (SDN), coupled with a choice of industry-standard hardware. Big Switch Networks has two solutions: Big Monitoring Fabric, a Next-Generation Network Packet Broker, which enables pervasive security and monitoring of data centre and cloud traffic for inline or out-of-band deployments and Big Cloud Fabric, the industry's first Next-Generation switching fabric that allows for choice of switching hardware for OpenStack, VMware, Container and Big Data use cases. Big Switch Networks is headquartered in Santa Clara, CA, with offices located in Tokyo, Sydney, London and Istanbul. For additional information, email info@bigswitch.com, follow @bigswitch, or visit www.bigswitch.com.
Big Switch Networks, Big Cloud Fabric, Big Monitoring Fabric, BigSecure, Big Chain, Switch Light OS, and Switch Light VX are trademarks or registered trademarks of Big Switch Networks, Inc. All other trademarks, service marks, registered marks, or registered service marks are the property of their respective owners.
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