Network World en-us Mon, 28 May 2018 02:35:04 -0700 Mon, 28 May 2018 02:35:04 -0700 Network World 510 510 Network World 796 288 Q&A: Cisco's Theresa Bui on the company's Kinetic IoT platform Fri, 25 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Jon Gold Jon Gold

It's been almost a year since Cisco announced Kinetic, a cloud-managed IoT platform aimed at capturing a large and profitable share of the rapidly growing business and industrial IoT market. The executive in charge of Kinetic, Theresa Bui, spoke to us about the platform and how it's architected, in the wake of a flagship customer announcement - the Port of Rotterdam - and a limited partnership with IBM.

What’s a customer getting for their money when they buy Cisco Kinetic?

As a whole, the platform enables three core, functional capabilities. It allows you to easily and automatically extract data, and how we do that is we ship a library of automated connectors that help you extract data from various data pipes, put it into a model – whether it’s CoAP or MQTT or whatever the flavor that works for you.

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IDG Contributor Network: Soil to sale, ranch to register: IoT connects producers, distributors, retailers and consumers Thu, 24 May 2018 10:23:00 -0700 Jeffery Torrance Jeffery Torrance

IoT, because of its flexibility and, let us admit, complexity, gives CIOs and business leaders in similar roles pause. And this anxiety about the pain of implementing comprehensive digital transformation is causing some foot dragging. Delaying however could put your business at risk, potentially causing your business to fall behind and ultimately fail.  Implementing IoT solutions offer the opportunity to sustain your business leadership, the ability to scale and create new types of sales/revenues, as well as cost savings.  No matter what the industry, there are partners aplenty eager to help enterprises transform their operations via the extraordinary power of fully deployed IoT systems.

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20 hot jobs ambitious IT pros should shoot for Thu, 24 May 2018 09:02:00 -0700 Michael Cooney Michael Cooney

What should your next role in IT be? Maybe a security management expert? Or a change management guru?

“Factors such as the proliferation of network-connected devices, adoption of cloud services and exponential rise in security threats are affecting hiring trends,” according to a survey released today by researchers at IDC and sponsored by Cisco about what IT roles will be hot in the future.

[ Click here to download a PDF bundle of five essential articles about IoT in the enterprise. ]

“Despite the central role that technology and the technology workforce play in this digital era, certain key roles stand out from the pack in terms of importance and opportunity. Not all roles are equal in the future,” wrote Mark Leary an intelligence analyst with Cisco Services in a blog post about the study.

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The future of storage is here Thu, 24 May 2018 07:38:00 -0700 Zeus Kerravala Zeus Kerravala

Sometime in the past couple of years, Gartner introduced a term called “Shared Accelerated Storage” (SAS) to describe what’s next for the industry after all-flash arrays. I’m not sure when they first used the term, but it was the very first bullet in its 2017 Storage Hype Cycle, indicating its relative newness as a market category.

In its Hype Cycle, Gartner has a rather long and complicated definition of what SAS is. The easy way to think about it is that it brings the benefits of network-based systems and direct-attached systems together by leveraging a number of new technologies, most notably Nonvolatile Memory Express— or NVMe, as its more commonly known.

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AI boosts data-center availability, efficiency Thu, 24 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Ann Bednarz Ann Bednarz

Artificial intelligence is set to play a bigger role in data-center operations as enterprises begin to adopt machine-learning technologies that have been tried and tested by larger data-center operators and colocation providers.

Today’s hybrid computing environments often span on-premise data centers, cloud and collocation sites, and edge computing deployments. And enterprises are finding that a traditional approach to managing data centers isn’t optimal. By using artificial intelligence, as played out through machine learning, there’s enormous potential to streamline the management of complex computing facilities.

AI in the data center, for now, revolves around using machine learning to monitor and automate the management of facility components such as power and power-distribution elements, cooling infrastructure, rack systems and physical security.

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Data-center management: What does DMaaS deliver that DCIM doesn’t? Thu, 24 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Ann Bednarz Ann Bednarz

Data-center downtime is crippling and costly for enterprises. It’s easy to see the appeal of tools that can provide visibility into data-center assets, interdependencies, performance and capacity – and turn that visibility into actionable knowledge that anticipates equipment failures or capacity shortfalls.

Data center infrastructure management (DCIM) tools are designed to monitor the utilization and energy consumption of both IT and building components, from servers and storage to power distribution units and cooling gear.

DCIM software tackles functions including remote equipment monitoring, power and environmental monitoring, IT asset management, data management and reporting. With DCIM software, enterprises can simplify capacity planning and resource allocation as well as ensure that power, equipment and floor space are used as efficiently as possible.

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Who’s developing quantum computers? Wed, 23 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 James A. Martin James A. Martin

There are two main camps in the quantum computing development, says Ashish Nadkarni, Program Vice President of Computing Platforms, Worldwide Infrastructure at IDC. In the first camp are entrenched players from the world of classical computing. And in the second are quantum computing startups.

“It’s a highly fragmented landscape,” Nadkarni says. “Each company has its own approach to building a universal quantum computer and delivering it as a service.”

Classic-computing vendors pioneer quantum computing

Along with IBM, other classical computing companies staking a claim in the emerging field of quantum computing include:

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What’s quantum computing [and why enterprises need to care] Wed, 23 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 James A. Martin James A. Martin

The first thing to know about quantum computing is that it won’t displace traditional, or ‘classical’ computing. The second thing to know: Quantum computing is still a nascent technology that probably won’t be ready for prime time for several more years.

And the third thing you should know? The time to start protecting your data’s security from quantum computers is now.

Here’s an overview of what you should know about quantum computing.

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SSDs get bigger, while prices get smaller Tue, 22 May 2018 07:39:00 -0700 Andy Patrizio Andy Patrizio

With so much going on in the enterprise storage world, two bits of good news have come out — and it’s only Tuesday. Capacity is going up, and prices are coming down.

According to the report from DRAMeXchange, the enterprise SSD market has been growing fast. It projects enterprise SSD sales to top 30 million units this year, up from fewer than 20 million units in 2016, and that rate of growth is expected to continue in the next three years.

That’s despite tight supply for memory chips in the first quarter resulting in high average selling prices. For the second quarter, which we are in the midst of, DRAMeXchange expects a rebound in demand due to increased supply.

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IDG Contributor Network: Build your technology layers on a cloud data foundation Tue, 22 May 2018 07:31:00 -0700 Rick Braddy Rick Braddy

The modern enterprise is comprised of a complex set of application stacks that span a disparate variety of virtual machines, physical servers, and proprietary storage hardware. Tentacles reach from headquarters, branch and remote offices, and offshore facilities around the world to technology stacks, SaaS providers and a multitude of applications.

Over the years layer after layer of technology has accumulated, but rather than replace what came before, we simply built on top through a long series of incremental decisions and implementations. For many, mainframes were bolstered by a client-server layer that moved into data centers. Web technology added SaaS beyond our data centers before virtualization and server consolidation reorganized everything into more manageable chunks.

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How to use logger on Linux Tue, 22 May 2018 05:49:00 -0700 Sandra Henry-Stocker Sandra Henry-Stocker

The logger command provides an easy way to add log files to /var/log/syslog — from the command line, from scripts, or from other files. In today's post, we'll take a look at how it works.

How easy is easy?

This easy. Just type logger <message> on the command line and your message will be added to the end of the /var/log/syslog file.

$ logger comment to be added to log
$ tail -1 /vvar/log/syslog
May 21 18:02:16 butterfly shs: comment to be added to log

Command output

You can also add the output from commands by enclosing the commands in backticks.

$ logger `who`
$ tail -1 /var/log/syslog
May 21 18:02:43 butterfly shs: shs pts/0 2018-05-21 15:57 (

Content from a file

The contents of text files can be added by using the -f option. Put the name of the file to be added to the log following the -f option as shown below.

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22 essential Linux security commands Tue, 22 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sandra Henry-Stocker Sandra Henry-Stocker There are many aspects to security on Linux systems – from setting up accounts to ensuring that legitimate users have no more privilege than they need to do their jobs. This is look at some of the most essential security commands for day-to-day work on Linux systems.

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]]>(Insider Story) Open Source Linux Security IDG Insider
Asigra evolves backup/recovery to address security, compliance needs Mon, 21 May 2018 07:36:00 -0700 Linda Musthaler Linda Musthaler

As backup and recovery products and solutions evolve, they are beginning to intersect with security and compliance. Online backup and recovery software company Asigra has announced a new version of its software that addresses the risks posed by ransomware and non-compliance with Article 17 of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Both should be a concern for organizations of all sizes, from global enterprises on down to small/medium businesses.

Let’s take a look at the new capabilities that Asigra is bringing to market with the version 14 release of its Cloud Backup software, and why these capabilities are an important evolution in backup and recovery.

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IDG Contributor Network: Overcoming kludges to secure web applications Mon, 21 May 2018 06:47:00 -0700 Matt Conran Matt Conran

When it comes to technology, nothing is static, everything is evolving. Either we keep inventing mechanisms that dig out new security holes, or we are forced to implement existing kludges to cover up the inadequacies in security on which our web applications depend.

The assault on the changing digital landscape with all its new requirements has created a black hole that needs attention. The shift in technology, while creating opportunities, has a bias to create security threats. Unfortunately, with the passage of time, these trends will continue to escalate, putting web application security at center stage.

Business relies on web applications. Loss of service to business-focused web applications not only affects the brand but also results in financial loss. The web application acts as the front door to valuable assets. If you don’t efficiently lock the door or at least know when it has been opened, valuable revenue-generating web applications are left compromised.

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DNS in the cloud: Why and why not Mon, 21 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Scott Hogg Scott Hogg As enterprises consider outsourcing their IT infrastructure, they should consider moving their public authoritative DNS services to a cloud provider’s managed DNS service, but first they should understand the advantages and disadvantages.

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]]>(Insider Story) Hybrid Cloud Networking Internet IDG Insider
Why NVMe over Fabric matters Fri, 18 May 2018 07:03:00 -0700 Andy Patrizio Andy Patrizio

In my earlier blog post on SSD storage news from HPE, Hitachi and IBM, I touched on the significance of NVMe over Fabric (NoF). But not wanting to distract from the main storage, I didn’t go into detail. I will do so with this blog post.

Hitachi Vantara goes all in on NVMe over Fabric

First, though, an update on the news from Hitachi Vantara, which I initially said had not commented yet on NoF. It turns out they are all in.

“Hitachi Vantara currently offers, and continues to expand support for, NVMe in our hyperconverged UCP HC line. As NVMe matures over the next year, we see opportunities to introduce NVMe into new software-defined and enterprise storage solutions. More will follow, but it confuses the conversation to pre-announce things that customers cannot implement today,” said Bob Madaio, vice president, Infrastructure Solutions Group at Hitachi Vantara, in an email to me.

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Access management is critical to IoT success Fri, 18 May 2018 03:30:00 -0700 Zeus Kerravala Zeus Kerravala

Onboarding devices has always been kind of a pain, but IT has managed to muddle its way through the process.

The bring your own device (BYOD) wave hit created some problems. Still, many organizations allowed employees to bring those devices onto the network by shifting the responsibility to the end user. 

What happens, though, when there are so many new devices that IT can’t keep up? Or when devices are brought in without IT’s knowledge? That’s the trend businesses are about to face as the Internet of Things (IoT) goes mainstream.

The IoT era is here, and it’s about to make IT’s life a lot more difficult

The IoT era has arrived, and I say this because more and more companies I talk to are connecting non-traditional IT devices, such as lighting systems and point-of-sale devices, to the internet without uttering the phrase “IoT.” It’s no longer this futuristic thing that we ponder and pontificate over.

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Cost-savings theme pervades IBM storage news Fri, 18 May 2018 03:01:00 -0700 Ann Bednarz Ann Bednarz

A flurry of storage announcements from IBM share a common theme: Helping customers achieve greater efficiency and wring cost savings from their multitier, multi-cloud storage environments.

Anchoring the news is IBM Storage Insights, a new AI and cloud-based storage management platform that’s designed to give users a fast view of storage capacity and performance, as well as make tiering recommendations to help cut storage costs. A single dashboard shows the status of block storage and captures trend information.

“Imagine you have an up-to-the-second event feed where you can see everything happening, not just on one of your arrays but across your entire environment,” said Sam Werner, vice president of offering management for IBM’s software-defined infrastructure (SDI) and storage software.

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Review: Icinga enterprise-grade, open-source network monitoring that scales Fri, 18 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Susan Perschke Susan Perschke

Continuing our quest for robust, enterprise-grade open source network monitoring, we tested Icinga Core 2 (version 2.8.1) and the stand-alone Icinga Web 2 interface. Created in 2009 as a fork of the Nagios network monitoring tool, Icinga has come a long way.

We found Icinga to be a powerful monitoring tool with many great features. The Core install is straightforward and basic monitoring is easy with either pre-configured templates or plugins. However, we discovered that the Web install is a bit more complicated and could stand to be streamlined.

Icinga runs on most of the popular Linux distros and the vendor provides detailed installation instructions for Ubuntu, Debian, Red Hat (including CentOS and Fedora) and SUSE/SLES. Icinga does not publish specific hardware requirements, but our installation ran well on a quad-core processor with 4 GB RAM and this is probably be a good starting point for a basic installation.

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The loss of net neutrality: Say goodbye to a free and open internet Thu, 17 May 2018 09:31:00 -0700 Tom Henderson Tom Henderson

Update May 17, 2018

Following the U.S. Senate’s 52-47 vote to reinstate net neutrality rules, U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) announced the House of Representatives will attempt to also force a vote on the issue under the Congressional Review Act (CRA).

“I have introduced a companion CRA in the House,” Doyle said during a press conference yesterday, “but I’m also going to begin a discharge petition, which we will have open for signature tomorrow morning. And I urge every member who supports a free and open internet to join me and sign this petition, so we can bring this legislation to the floor.”

To force a vote in the House, the petition needs 218 signatures. The Democrats hold only 193 seats there, so they need 25 Republicans to switch sides.

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Cisco CEO trumpets Catalyst 9K advances, software business success Thu, 17 May 2018 08:50:00 -0700 Michael Cooney Michael Cooney

Industry bellwether Cisco revealed some important financial numbers this week – its revenues were $12.5 billion, up 4 percent for the third quarter year-over-year, with product revenue up 5 percent.

But one of the of the more interesting tidbits is that the company said it was adding some 40 Catalyst 9000 customers a day and has  added 2,700 new customers this quarter to bring the total to 5,800 customers since its introduction in 2017. The Catalyst 9000 is key to a number of Cisco’s future initiatives – one of the most important being its drive to build out its Network Intuitive plans for intent-based networking.

The other is that the way its software is sold – via a variety of subscription/feature levels is a key component of its overall strategy to become a more software-oriented company.

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Magnetic smart fabrics will store data in clothes Thu, 17 May 2018 08:28:00 -0700 Patrick Nelson Patrick Nelson

High-density data could one day be stored in fabric patches embedded in people’s clothing, say scientists at the University of Washington. Importantly, it wouldn’t require electricity, so the smart-fabric could be washed or ironed just like regular clothing. That could make it more convenient than other forms of memory.

Off-the-shelf conductive thread, which the scientists say they recently discovered can be magnetized, is being used in trials. The data is read using a simple magnometer. The conductive thread is used commercially now in gloves for operating touch screens, for example.

“You can think of the fabric as a hard disk,” said Shyam Gollakota, associate professor in the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington, announcing the breakthrough on the school’s website at the end of last year. “You’re actually doing this data storage on the clothes you’re wearing.”

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IDG Contributor Network: Rationale in irrationality – The coming of cloud bust? Thu, 17 May 2018 05:45:00 -0700 Marty Puranik Marty Puranik

Any technology, product, or service can become so popular that it develops a trendiness, in which case it becomes difficult to determine if the tool actually has its perceived value or is causing overzealousness in the market. Cloud computing has the huge visibility that could allow it to become an overvalued product, which could allow industry analysts to think it will expand more rapidly than it actually will. This article explores the current industry growth rate projections for the cloud and signs that these growth rates could begin to slow in the years ahead.

The numbers: how fast is cloud growing?

For many reasons, businesses are turning toward the cloud. One key one is that a greater understanding has developed that the security of cloud is preferable to the security of on-premise architecture.

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Survey: Mainstream adoption of SDN, SD-WAN finally arrives Thu, 17 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Shamus McGillicuddy Shamus McGillicuddy

In 2018, for the first time cloud and software-defined data-center concerns have become the primary focus of enterprise network teams, bumping server virtualization from the top spot, according to an Enterprise management Associates (EMA) report based on a survey of 251 North American and European enterprise network managers

This is the first shift in their priorities for in more than a decade. Since 2008, EMA has been asking network managers to identify the broad IT initiatives that drive their priorities. Server virtualization has dominated their responses year after year. Cloud and software-defined data center (SDDC) architectures have always been secondary or tertiary drivers.

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How Cisco’s Multigigabit Technology can increase network speeds Wed, 16 May 2018 06:20:00 -0700 Frank Kobuszewski Frank Kobuszewski

If you remember, in a previous Switch IT Up blog post I referenced Wireless AC and Wave 2 — some of the things that we could expect and some of the problems we could run up against. Things like having enough bandwidth to our APs to support a 6.8 gig connection.

So, what can be done about that?

Well, in 2015, Cisco introduced its Catalyst Multigigabit Technology, along with a new group of products, that address that issue and allow users to get more than just that 1 gig speed that most people have in their closets or in their infrastructure. How can users leverage that and still use their preexisting infrastructure rather than having to rip everything out and replace it?

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What the big four U.S. mobile ISPs are doing with IoT Wed, 16 May 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Jon Gold Jon Gold

The Internet of Things is a business phenomenon at least as much as it is a technological one, which means that every company in the world with a possible angle on IoT is doing its best to claim a piece of the large and growing pie. In the case of the big four U.S. mobile data providers, the trick is selling more than just connectivity.

To talk about the big four as a single entity, however, is slightly misleading. The bigger two – AT&T and Verizon – have a considerable lead in customer reach and technological maturity over T-Mobile and Sprint, with both of the former companies on track to deliver about $1 billion in IoT-related revenue in 2018, according to 451 Research vice president Brian Partridge.

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How to speak Linux Tue, 15 May 2018 12:03:00 -0700 Sandra Henry-Stocker Sandra Henry-Stocker

I didn’t even stop to imagine that people pronounced Linux commands differently until many years ago when I heard a co-worker use the word “vie” (as in "The teams will vie for the title") for what I’d always pronounced “vee I.” It was a moment I’ll never forget.

Our homogenous and somewhat rebellious community of Unix/Linux advocates seemed to have descended into dialects — not just preferences for Solaris or Red Hat or Debian or some other variant (fewer back in those days than we have today), but different ways of referring to the commands we knew and used every day.

The "problem" has a number of causes. For one thing, our beloved man pages don't include pronunciation guidelines like dictionaries do. For another, Unix commands evolved with a number of different pronunciation rules. The names of some commands (like "cat") were derived from words (like "concatenate") and were pronounced as if they were words, too (some actually are). Others derived from phrases like "cpio," which pull together the idea of copying (cp) and I/O. Others are simply abbreviations, such as "cd" for "change directory." And then we have tools like "awk" that go in an entirely different direction by being named for the surnames of its creators (Alfred Aho, Peter Weinberger, and Brian Kernighan). No wonder there are no consistent rules for how to pronounce commands!

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What Qualcomm’s rumored exit from data centers means Tue, 15 May 2018 11:16:00 -0700 Andy Patrizio Andy Patrizio

The tech industry got a jolt last week worse than the 3.5 magnitude quake that hit Oakland, California, on Monday. A report by Bloomberg, citing the usual anonymous sources, said that after a whole lot of R&D and hype, Qualcomm was looking to shut down or sell its Centriq line of ARM-based data center processors.

Qualcomm launched the 48-core Centriq 2400 last November. At the time, potential customers, such as Microsoft, Alibaba and HPE, took to the stage to voice their support and interest.

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HPE snaps-up hyperconverged-network (HCN) vendor Plexxi Tue, 15 May 2018 09:36:00 -0700 Michael Cooney Michael Cooney

HPE today took a step toward bolstering its data-center technology with plans to acquire Plexxi and its hyperconverged networking fabric.

HPE said it expects the deal to close in its third quarter, which ends July 31, 2018 but did not release other financial details. Plexxi was founded in 2010 and targeted the nascent software-defined networking (SDN) market.

“Plexxi’s technology will extend HPE’s market-leading software-defined compute and storage capabilities into the high-growth, software-defined networking market, expanding our addressable market and strengthening our offerings for customers and partners,”

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BrandPost: Using “The 3 V’s of Automation” to Maximize Automation ROI Tue, 15 May 2018 08:05:00 -0700 Brand Post Brand Post

For traditional Communications Service Providers (CSPs), the barriers to applying automation are coming down faster than ever before due to the use of new technologies such as analytics and machine learning. So, what is different, and why is now the time to act?

The three V’s of automation

Within most traditional Operations Support System (OSS) projects there is an established methodology for identifying the environments best suited for automation. People use different names for these network automation target areas, but I like to refer to them as The Three V’s. These are:


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