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Open and Software-Driven―it’s in Cisco’s DNA

By Richard Arneson

Cisco’s Digital Network Architecture (DNA), announced to the marketplace approximately two (2) years ago, brings together all the elements of an organization’s digital transformation strategy: virtualization, analytics, automation, cloud and programmability. It’s an open, software-driven architecture that complements its data center-based Application-Centric Infrastructure (ACI) by extending that same policy-driven, software development approach throughout the entire network, including campuses and branches, be they wired or wireless. It’s delivered through the Cisco ONE™ Software family, which enables simplified software-based licensing and helps protect software investments.

What does all of that really mean?

With Cisco DNA, each network device is considered part of a unified fabric, which allows IT departments a simpler and more cost-effective means of really taking control of their network infrastructure. Now IT departments can react at machine speed to the quick changing of business needs, including security threats, across the entire network. Prior to Cisco DNA, reaction times relied on human-powered workflows, which ultimately meant making changes one device at a time. Now they can interact with the entire network through a single fabric, and, in the case of a cyber threat, they can address it in real-time. With Cisco DNA, companies can address the entire network as one, single programmable platform. Ultimately, employees and customers will enjoy a highly enhanced user experience.

The latest buzz―Intent-based Networking

Cisco DNA is one of the company’s answers to the industry’s latest buzz phrase―Intent-based networking. In short, intent-based networking takes the network management of yore (manual, time-consuming and tedious) and automates those processes. It accomplishes this by taking deep intelligence and integrated security to deliver network-wide assurance.

Cisco DNA’s “five (5) Guiding Principles”:

  1. Virtualizeeverything. With Cisco DNA, companies can enjoy the freedom of choice to run any service, anywhere, and independent of underlying platforms, be they virtual, physical, on-prem or in the cloud.
  2. Automate for easy deployment, maintenance and management―a real game-changer.
  3. Provide Cloud-delivered Service Management that combines the agility of the cloud with security and the control of on-prem solutions.
  4. Make it open, extensible and programmable at every layer, with open APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) and a developer platform to support an extensive ecosystem of network-enabled applications.
  5. Deliver extensive Analytics, which provide thorough insights on the network, the IT infrastructure and the business.

Nimble, simple and network-wide―that’s GDT and Cisco DNA

If you haven’t heard of either intent-based networking or Cisco’s DNA, contact one of the networking professionals at GDT for more information. They’ve helped companies of all sizes, and from all industries, realize their digital transformation goals. You can reach them here:  Engineering@gdt.com. They’d love to hear from you.]]>

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