Thursday Sep 12, 2013

Oracle Virtual Networking and Compute Appliance at OpenWorld 2013

This time last year, we were just getting a chance to talk about some new technology that had been recently added to the Oracle portfolio: Oracle Virtual Networking.  Pretty powerful stuff on its own, as long as you're a fan of high performance networking, simplifying your data center, and saving a lot of money in the process.

This year, we've got another new product line to talk about as well, and the Oracle Virtual Networking technology is at the heart of it: the Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance.  It's an engineered system designed from the start for virtualization, and intended for general purpose workloads running on Oracle Solaris, Oracle Linux, other Linux distros, or Windows.

Here's a short video walk-through, showing OVCA power-up to production in less than an hour:

And if you want to learn more about either OVCA or Oracle Virtual Networking, there are several sessions of interest coming up next week at OpenWorld:

Monday, September 23rd

1:45 PM - Oracle SDN: Software-Defined Networking in a Hybrid, Open Data Center
(CON4465, Westin San Francisco - Concordia)

Software-defined networking is gaining momentum within the broader enterprise and data center networking industry. Oracle SDN, a component of Oracle Virtual Networking, provides the fastest and most agile software-defined networking currently available in the marketplace. Learn its benefits, and how it differs from other SDNs.  This session also provides use cases for infrastructure as a service (IaaS), a private cloud model, and virtual network services.

4:45 PM - Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance: From Power On to Production in About an Hour
(CON11650, Westin San Francisco - Metropolitan III)

See how the Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance goes from power on to running production applications faster than any comparable system; configure any resources without ever needing to make a physical change on the system. OVCA is an ideal data center building block for customers looking to simplify their operations and spend more time on innovation and less time on fighting fires.

Tuesday, September 24th

12:00 N - Rapid Application Deployment with Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance
(CON11651, Westin San Francisco - Metropolitan II)

This session will demonstrate how you can use Oracle templates and assemblies to deploy a range of Oracle software in a simple, repeatable, and scalable manner. Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder to create and modify templates and then deploy them on Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance, which can go from power on to running production applications in less than an hour. Come to this exciting session to see how you can take advantage of its unique features to accelerate the way you deploy and manage applications in your environment.

Wednesday, September 25th

11:45 AM - Deploying Fabric-Based Data Centers with Oracle Virtual Networking
(CON4432, Westin San Francisco - Olympic)

Learn how leading companies have managed explosive growth by moving to a dynamic fabric-based data center infrastructure, integrating Oracle Virtual Networking into the core of their infrastructure. This session will cover best practices in automation, monitoring, and maintenance of Oracle Virtual Networking, to drive efficiency and effectiveness in a high-transaction environment, with case studies from customers.

Thursday, September 26th

2:00 PM - Dynamic Provisioning of Virtual Network Resources with Oracle Virtual Networking
(HOL10105, Marriott Marquis - Salon 5/6)

This is a 90-minute Hands-On Lab, where you will learn how to use Oracle Fabric Manager to dynamically deploy virtual resources to servers. It will step through how to control connectivity on thousands of servers from a single interface, and create rapidly repeatable configurations with I/O templates. This lab will also explore using Oracle Fabric Manager features to visualize a network's physical and logical network topology, group servers and their management as a single entity, create network and storage clouds, and set up cloud quality of service parameters.

Monday Apr 08, 2013

Oracle Solaris and SPARC (and x86) Performance, Part 4

East or West?

I admit it. Being a bit removed from my days as a system administrator, and not necessarily steeped in the day-to-day existence of network design, I was slightly perplexed when I first saw the original of the illustration on the right.

This was shortly after we'd acquired Xsigo, a company whose name also did not immediately reveal anything about the cool stuff they made, and what problems it solved.

So here's this slide I need to present, with this illustration, and no speaker notes. Well, most of it makes sense, but "W" and "E"? Ah, possibly "Web" and "Enterprise"! It sure couldn't be anything like, I don't know... "West" and "East!" What would that have to do with networking?

And many of you are already throwing things at your screen, yelling, of course it's "West" and "East," dumkopf! (Especially if you're German.) It turns out that if you're smarter than, oh, say, me, you know that the "East/West problem" is a thing, and Oracle Virtual Networking, the products the Xsigo acquisition adds to our portfolio, are the things that solves that thing.

Home is Best

(If by "home" we mean "simplified data center deployments with a wire-once solution and simple software defined network configurations."  And it's my blog post, so that is indeed what it means.)

Simply speaking, east/west traffic is the traffic that rather than going in and out of the data center (which in the world of this metaphor is called north/south traffic), goes between servers in the same data center -- or even within the same physical server.

Clearly, the more devices you have interposed in this traffic, or the more congested your connections are, the slower, more complicated, and expensive things are. Equally clearly, east/west traffic is becoming a really big deal in the age of virtualization and networked storage.

Oracle Virtual Networking addresses this in a big way, with an open architecture data center fabric delivering 80 Gb/sec bandwidth. Not only does this make for faster services (customers have seen fourfold application performance improvement), it can also cut capital expenditures by significant amounts and simplify administration, allowing new services to be set up in minutes instead of days. We have one customer who was able to take the 98 network cables they would run into a single blade chassis down to 6, and drop 6 switches in such a configuration down to 2.

And, as the title of this post indicates, this is now available for Oracle Solaris deployments. It's supported with Oracle Solaris on both x86 and SPARC systems, including the new SPARC T5 and M5 servers.  It also supports Oracle Linux, Oracle VM, VMware, Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Hyper-V, so we've pretty much got you covered.

Where things can get very interesting with Oracle Solaris, of course, is how this can be used in conjunction with a feature like Oracle Solaris Zones, and how that in turn leverages the power of ZFS. Basically, you're putting everything in your data center on frictionless bearings, so that instead of recabling your systems, or having to physically provision new storage, you can instead stand up new application environments at a moment's notice by reallocating existing resources.

Now, instead of throwing things at the screen, I imagine you're now cleaning up the coffee spray and saying, "My gosh, you guys should do a Webcast about this!" Excellent idea.

Webcast: How to Manage Your Data Center with Oracle Virtual Networking
Tuesday April 30, 2013
11:00am PT


Tuesday Sep 25, 2012

Oracle OpenWorld - Events of Interest

I mentioned the "Focus On Oracle Solaris" document the other day, which lists many of the Solaris-related events at Oracle OpenWorld this year; today I thought I'd highlight a few sessions you might find interesting.

Monday, October 1st:

4:45 PM - Get Proactive: Best Practices for Maintaining and Upgrading Oracle Solaris
(CON3042, Moscone South 252)

This session covers best practices for upgrading and patching and how to take advantage of unique technologies in Oracle Solaris 10 and 11. Learn how to get maximum value from My Oracle Support for both reactive and proactive requirements. Understand the benefits of secure remote access and how Oracle Support experts use collaborative shared sessions combined with Oracle Solaris technologies such as DTrace.

Tuesday, October 2nd:

10:15 AM -  How to Increase Performance and Agility with an Open Data Center Fabric
(CON12215, Moscone South 200)

If you haven't had a chance to hear about Xsigo Systems, this is a golden opportunity while you're at OpenWorld.

Now part of Oracle, Xsigo's network virtualization technology is designed to increase both application performance and management efficiency, through a combination of software-defined network technology and the industry’s fastest fabric, allowing data center to converge Ethernet and Fibre Channel connectivity to a single fabric, to reduce complexity by 70 percent and CapEx by 50 percent while providing more I/O bandwidth to your applications.

Wednesday, October 3rd:

10:15 AM - General Session: Oracle Solaris 11 Strategy, Engineering Insights, and Roadmap
(GEN8791, Moscone South 103)

Markus Flierl, head of Oracle Solaris Core Engineering, will outline the strategy and roadmap for Oracle Solaris,  how Oracle Solaris 11 is being deployed in cloud computing and the unique optimizations in Oracle Solaris 11 for the Oracle stack. The session also offers a sneak peek at the latest technology under development in Oracle Solaris, and what customers can expect to see in the coming updates.

Plus, there are several Hands-On Labs:

Monday, October 1st:

10:45 AM - 11:45 AM - Reduce Risk with Oracle Solaris Access Control to Restrain Users and Isolate Applications
(HOL10201, Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15)

4:45 PM - 5:45 PM - Managing Your Data with Built-In Oracle Solaris ZFS Data Services in Release 11
(HOL10202, Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15)

Tuesday, October 2nd:

1:15 PM - 2:15 PM - Virtualizing Your Oracle Solaris 11 Environment
(HOL10203, Marriott Marquis - Salon 10/11)

Wednesday, October 3rd:

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM - Large-Scale Installation and Deployment of Oracle Solaris 11
(HOL10204, Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15)

If you're an OpenWorld attendee, go to to Schedule Builder to guarantee your space in any session or lab. There's plenty more--see the "Focus On Oracle Solaris" guide.

See you next week in San Francisco!


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