This is going to be a busy week for the Tech Field Day family. They have delegates en-route to Tech Field Day 12 this morning, and Wednesday the crew for Network Field day 13 arrive. I can’t express how excited I am about going to Networking Field Day 13 this week. I haven’t been to an actual NFD event since NFD2, although I did get to go to the TFD9 event in Austin a couple years ago. I can’t wait to land in San Jose. For those new to this concept, Networking Field day is an event that is focused on bringing together IT product vendors and thought leaders in the industry to share information and opinions in a presentation and discussion format. Please be sure to read my disclaimer page on this topic. These events are streamed live, so if you want to listen in while we talk about the latest and greatest technologies from the vendors we’re meeting with, or if you just want to listen to us moan and groan at the occasional Gartner or NASCAR slides… you should tune in. On the menu for this week we have a number of exciting companies that I’d like to take a quick peek at before hand.
Apstra is an SDN vendor that is building a multi-vendor network automation platform. Being completely vendor agnostic presents it’s own challenges though, as your network engineering staff will be forced to become well versed in many divergent platforms. I can’t imagine trying to keep track of products from Cisco, Arista, Cumulus, and Juniper in a single environment. But at least it can all be managed from a single platform. I have some faith in their current vector, and the TFD community has a friend (@cloudtoad) working for them, so let’s hope this approach pays dividends in spades. More Info – 1 – 2 – 3
Forward Networks came out of stealth mode today to launch their Network Assurance Platform. They’ve spent the last 3 years in development trying to solve some severe problems with today’s large enterprise networks. Using their co-founder’s techniques used to model complex computer networks and three years of researched, they’re able to build very accurate models of your network in software. More Info – 1 – 2 – 3
Ixia makes a number of networking testing products. In the past I’ve taken a look at their security testing and network visibility products, and looking over their website I’m interested to more about their network tap products and network testing equipment. Looking over their website it seems they’ve build a Raspberry Pi based Active Monitoring Probe, which is something I had been playing with in my “spare” time. Depending on the control software behind it and the metrics they’re gathering this could turn out to be quite interesting. More Info – 1 – 2
NEC has always presented some interesting ideas in the SDN market, but like I said at NFD2, the best ideas are often left deflated and ignored. But the past few years I’ve pretty much ignored most of the SDN market as no one has presented anything that is useful at the scale I typically work at, the mid-enterprise market.
Solarwinds is a leader in IT monitoring software and probably needs no introduction. That said, I’m curious to what they’ve been up to for the past couple years as I haven’t been following their products since I changed jobs a while back… Looking at their website it seems Orion has had a facelift and has some pretty nice features. It will be interesting to see how things are going, and if they’re still giving away stickers with my blog’s name printed on them…
VeloCloud has made a big splash in the SD-WAN market over the past year. Their products , and our community has had some pretty good interaction with them via PacketPushers and last year’s NFD9 you can also grab a copy of the eBook SD-WAN for Dummies. From what I hear from Pete Welcher several big providers are going to be offering services based on VeloCloud tech in the very near future.
Viptela has more SD-WAN offerings to present! I first heard about them early last year on the Packet Pushers Podcast. Which went into their Secure Extensible Network architecture which aims to provide a high visibility platform for SD-WAN deployments. Certainly should be an interesting week for Networking geeks!
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Tech Field Day is made possible by the sponsors who are footing the bill for the travel and living expenses of delegates such as myself. Sponsors should understand that their financing of Tech Field Day in no way guarantees them any bias from the delegates and that they are only there to provide their honest and direct opinions of the solutions they present. For my full disclaimer, click here.
Network engineer turned management currently servicing the enterprise data center market. I started working on networks in the ’90s and still feel like that was just a few years ago. Jack of all trades, master of none; I love to learn about everything. Feel free to ask me about photography, woodworking, nhra, watches, or even networking! — For feedback, please leave a comment on the article in question, and I’ll respond as soon as I can. For everything else including fan mail or death threats, contact me via twitter.