InteropNet: The Planning Meeting

rocket-scientistsLast week, I attended the planning meeting of InteropNet. For those that did not read Panos’ blog post, NetBeez was selected as the network and application performance monitoring provider for the Interop 2015 in Las Vegas, the leading independent technology conference for IT. InteropNet is the network that provides connectivity to the exhibiting companies:

“InteropNet is an industry-leading demonstration of how varying vendors can collaborate to design and deploy a converged network. Striving for 100 percent reliability and zero downtime, InteropNet supports the Expo Floor, conference sessions and wireless access.”

What does it take to assure 100 percent reliability and zero downtime? Great technologies and a badass team of engineers, led by the architect Glenn Evans. Glenn Evans is the CEO of Acrux, an IT consulting company that provides network infrastructure and program management services. Glenn is responsible for selecting, along with the rest of the InteropNet team, the technologies and vendors involved, and for managing the network during expo.

The planning meeting is the kick-off activity of the project. During the planning meeting, the vendors meet in the same room to plan and design the infrastructure and services that will go live and support Interop. The next phase of the project is called hot stage, during which the network hardware and software is pre-staged and configured for the event in Las Vegas, which is scheduled for April the 28th through May 1st, 2015.

Last week, I represented NetBeez at the planning meeting, and I realized that the spirit of Interop was living in the room. You have to remember that Interop stands for interoperability and the strength of this event is that you can see how different technologies can interoperate to provide IT solutions and state-of-the-art network infrastructure. The same was happening in the meeting, as representatives from HP, Infoblox (DeepDive Networking), and NEC were collaborating and working together to come up with a functional and effective enterprise solution.

What does the InteropNet network look like? It follows the traditional core, distribution and access layers design, with redundant uplinks to the Internet. The entire core network is 10Gbps, while the exhibitors will be offered 1Gbps connections via 20 separate PEDs, which are 24-post racks that are located in different areas of the Mandalay Bay convention center. Each PED is dual connected, and redundancy is also enabled at each layer of the topology.

What is NetBeez bringing to the table? NetBeez will provide network and application performance monitoring from the user perspective. We will deploy agents at the access layer, one in each PED, to verify services availability and integrity of the network infrastructure. We may install agents in other strategic areas of the network and data center supporting the systems.

NetBeez is also participating to the SDN Lab, which is a purpose-built lab to test Software-Defined Networking (SDN). The SDN Lab first took place at the 2014 Interop in New York City. This is a great opportunity for the attendees to learn more about Software-Defined Networking. Vendors like HP, Cisco, NEC with Alcatel-Lucent, Arista, and Big Switch will deploy their own implementation of SDN in a POD, a self-contained lab environment where engineers can learn more about functions and features of each different implementation. In each POD, there will be a NetBeez deployment so the vendors can demonstrate certain SDN features by using the monitoring traffic generated by the BEEZ.

So what are you waiting for? Register for Interop, attend a tour of InteropNet and the SDN Lab, and come visit us at booth #2344 at the New Innovators Pavilion.