Using virtualization to consolidate data traffic on a single network applianceFor network routers, servers, and switches the jobs of monitoring, analyzing, and securing computing resources have never been more important. We have already seen a marked increase in data traffic but some are warning of a traffic explosion. According to a report from ABI Research, the volume of global annual data traffic will exceed 60,000 petabytes in 2016, over seven times more than the 8,000 petabytes expected in 2011. ABI has also predicted that the fastest year-on-year growth will occur in 2012, at 58 percent. Others are predicting that traffic could grow even faster as cloud computing centralizes more computing resources and more devices are used to exchange data, such as mobile phones, tablets, TVs, etc.
To handle this increased traffic without blowing the budget organizations will need more server power and storage capacity in their data centers. If they’re to succeed they have to stop looking at bringing in additional resources and instead use what they’ve got in a smarter way.
Open the door to virtualization
Today, network appliances are typically single server implementations, with few providing more than one application. It is common for several network appliances to be accessing a single monitoring location. For example, a typical scenario could be three appliances monitoring the same connection, with one monitoring specific flows, another providing performance analysis, and a third providing intrusion detection functionality.
Since cost, space, and power are major issues for data centers, reducing the footprint of network appliances also becomes a major consideration. Many network appliances require all the processing power they can get and thus cannot share processing resources with other applications. Examples are 10 GbE Intrusion Prevention Systems or Application Performance Monitoring systems. But there are also a large number of monitoring, analysis, and security appliances that run at lower speeds or do not require as many processing resources. Here, there are opportunities to consolidate these appliances into a single server solution.
If all appliances are based on the same operating system, it is possible to consolidate them using intelligent network adapters that can distribute data and share data between multiple applications. Such solutions exist today. If the appliances are based on different operating systems or environments, or expect to have full control over available hardware resources, then an alternative solution is required. In such instances, virtualization can be used to consolidate these different applications. It will depend on your data sharing and distribution needs as to which solution provides the best possible outcome. The following describes various options based on VMware that can be used to consolidate multiple network appliances onto a single physical platform.
Page 1 of 3Next >