Cisco’s acquisition of Tail-f and its Network Control System (NCS) cloud orchestration product raises questions on what now becomes of Cisco’s own Intelligent Automation for Cloud (CIAC) system. CIAC has been on the market since 2012 and was introduced in 2011 as a component of the company’s CloudVerse cloud management initiative.
Cisco says Tail-f will complement CIAC and CloudVerse. From e-mailed statements:
The Tail-F portfolio and technology complements Cisco’s existing automation and orchestration portfolio, including CIAC for various different use cases. CIAC has primarily been used for IaaS offers, while Tail-F will complement that by doing real-time provisioning and automation of underlying multi-vendor network infrastructure using industry standard data models…
Tail-f’s portfolio provides Cisco an opportunity build on our existing virtualization and orchestration portfolio which allows us to continue accelerating or cloud efforts. The acquisition has not yet closed and it’s too early to state specifically what the engineering road map will look but we fully expect Tail-f’s products to play an important role in our portfolio, not to replace what currently exists.
CIAC attained some multi-cloud management capabilities early this year that allow customers to orchestrate multiple cloud environments, including Amazon EC2 and OpenStack. An earlier release of CIAC featured cloud infrastructure discovery and resource tracking, self-service provisioning and management of multiple virtual data centers, and the ability to order network resources like VLANs from a self-service portal.
Cisco says that latter feature, called Network Services Manager, provides the foundation for network-as-a-service in future releases of CIAC.
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