Big Switch is an software-defined networking (SDN) startup with plenty of credentials. The company was co-founded in 2010 by Cisco veteran Kyle Forster and Guido Appenzeller, the Stanford researcher who led the development of the OpenFlow standard. Big Switch raised nearly $40 million in venture capital to date, from investors including Goldman Sachs, Redpoint Ventures, Index Ventures, and Khosla Ventures, and it finally made its debut today.
Big Switch exited stealth today with the official launch of their Big Switch Product Suite whose goal is to virtualize the network with an Open SDN with the slogan apps, apps, and more apps.
Today BigSwitch announced it’s first product line that is generally available. For those unaware, BigSwitch Networks is a VC whose heritage was deeply seeded by researchers and PHD’s from Stanford, UC-Berkeley along with, product managers and executives from traditional networking companies.
BigSwitch’s largest contribution to the community and that is the open source OpenFlow controller FloodLight. Just as Nicira who was recently acquired by VMWare open sourced their vSwitch Open vSwitch, BigSwitch did the same with FloodLight. In the spirit of enabling horizontalization these projects allow researchers, consumers and even competitors to leverage R&D from these startups. We have enough concepts to keep us going for the foreseeable future, it is time to start executing them as more products continue to emerge.
Big Switch Product Suite
The Big Network Controller serves as the network application platform powering two other products Big Tap and Big Virtual Switch. These three elements account for the startup’s new Big Switch Product Suite Big Tap is a monitoring tool while the Big Virtual Switch is being pegged as a virtualization layer that does for the networking space what VMware did for servers. Appenzeller, who serves as his company’s CEO, elaborated in a statement:
“Big Switch Networks ecosystem ensures customers the broadest range of choice in physical and virtual infrastructure and applications, coupled with the industry’s only open network application platform,” Appenzeller said. “Our Big Virtual Switch network virtualization application enables up to 50% more VMs per rack, resulting in as much as $500K/rack in CAPEX savings and $30K/rack/year OPEX savings, based on a 40 server rack.”
The entire Big Switch line-up is based on open networks, but the amount of support the startup managed to garner is even more noteworthy. The company’s ecosystem consists of over two dozen big name vendors including Arista Networks, Broadcom, Brocade, Juniper and Palo Alto Networks as well as Microsoft and Dell. Surprisingly there is no mention of Cisco, which has been slow to adopt SDN in spite of an apparent effort to jump on the bandwagon.
My ANGLE – A Networking Renaissance
We are seeing the beginning of a networking renaissance or a innovation boom in the networking space. This launch represents Big Switch’s “big splash” in the market after Nicira exited the market at $1b to VMware. Big Switch is setup to be “gold plated” venture and this is the first step for them to get a market position. Big Switch hopes to lead the emerging and lucrative software defined networking (SDN) category. Big Switch has sorted out their financing partners and are fully funded with a great management team. Simply put: they are “geared up” and ready to go full tilt.
Big Switch doesn’t have many customers yet, but based upon their recent traction with some big not yet announced enterprise customers they should do great. I’m expecting them to move fast and buildup their product and solutions and get them into the market as fast as possible. In the industry they call this a “greenfield” opportunity. We will be tracking them closely.
The goal of Big Switch is to be open on the platform and differentiate on their unique product suite. The question is “is the networking renaissance” real? Either way the overall the industry valuations are rising as a result.
Here is the CrowdANGLE on Twitter from some of our fav tweets.
John Furrier is founder, co-CEO, and Editor-in-Chief of SiliconANGLE, a new media company covering the intersection of computer science and social science. Furrier is also the co-founder and CEO of CrowdChat a social media platform for large-scale group conversations over hashtags. In addition to SiliconANGLE John runs Broadband Developments a private incubator and investment firm for creating new startups. Furrier lives in Palo Alto, California with his wife and four children.
Flash, Hyperconvergence, OpenStack, Containers and Platforms are some of the hottest infrastructure technologies today. This article looks at the realities of each area to determine what is real and where users should be cautious.
Hortonworks' Dataflow is meant to support both the Internet of Things as well as the application-to-application analytics that traditional stream processors underpin. More broadly, stream processors are becoming core functionality the complements the more familiar batch processing engines such as Hive, HBase, or Impala. Applications that need near real-time functionality have to evaluate stream processors as core parts of their application design patterns. CIO's and CTO's now have to choose a Hadoop platform vendor as part of a more strategic, long-term partnership than ever before. New functionality is splintering the Hadoop ecosystem and customers don't really have second source options with different Hadoop distributions. We are now reentering the territory of the proprietary flavors of Unix in the '90s.
While Cloud Native Applications and DevOps are generating massive amounts of hype, the ability of IT organizations to execute on this vision outside of Silicon Valley is often being questioned. VMware’s Cloud-Native Apps group is putting together an infrastructure framework that might just be the right model to bring DevOps interactions to the masses.
The markets and ecosystems around Structured and Unstructured application platforms are rapidly evolving. IT organizations have many choices and one architecture will not fit every company. Wikibon looks at leading platforms and the alignment of customer needs with platform capabilities.
As Systems of Intelligence mature they will have machine learning at their core. That core is what will enable the application to anticipate and influence the end-user at the point of interaction in e-commerce. That same core keeps a real-time fraud prevention application up-to-date without requiring human intervention.
Hadoop is one of the most innovative ecosystems the industry has ever seen. But fragmentation and complexity are the trade-offs of all this rapid evolution while the platform is still maturing. Choice has a cost. This research report has only examined the compute engines that process data. But the fragmentation in management, governance, and security tools is just as great. There is a continually expanding array of tools such as Oozie, Falcon, Atlas, Knox, Ranger, HDFS DARE, Ambari, Hue, Sentry, Sahara, Cloudera Manager and Navigator, and Zookeeper. At some point it makes sense for customers to consider investing in a tool that can hide much of that complexity. To be clear, there is no magic product that can hide all these technologies. But when customers take the perspective of simplifying an end-to-end process, solutions are available to address the problem.
CIO and senior IT executives should minimize investments in HDDs for latency storage investments going forward. Storage practitioners should focus on moving latency storage to flash, implementing a sound catalog strategy for the management of snapshots, and a strategy for linking to on-premise or cloud-based capacity resources. Any storage that involves assisting end-users and customers should be regarded as latency storage.
A companion piece to Wikibon's Public Cloud Market Forecast 2015-2026, this research examines the revenue from SaaS, IaaS and PaaS vendors. The competitive environment surrounding the Public Cloud is in flux. SaaS remains turbulent with new entrants successfully gaining share and incumbent licensed software providers trying to develop SaaS offerings and reclaim leadership positions they have maintained for a decade or more. The IaaS segment leadership is beginning to crystalize as a function of scale, but PaaS is just formulating and finding its way. As such, enterprises need to be wary of which providers are winning and losing (and where), but more importantly what they themselves intend to accomplish with Public Cloud.
Cataloging and automated policy management are the key enablers of a virtual flash world, where storage snapshots are both King and Knave. Combining cataloging and automated policy management is the only solution to enabling storage copy reduction in harmony is risk management and compliance. This enables and justifies an all-flash data center, enables data to be available quicker to the business and other IT functions, and drives greater business and IT productivity and responsiveness. CIOs and senior management should create a small team of the best and brightest, create an optimized all-flash virtual environment with a programmatically integrated catalog in a subset of the datacenter, and demonstrate the practicality and benefits of this environment to the business and IT.
VMworld has grown to be one of the largest and most important technology industry events. Wikibon has attended this event for many years and will have its largest presence this year as part of a double-set of theCUBE. Coverage will examine the broad and diverse ecosystem including storage, cloud, networking and much more.