Arista reaches for the hybrid clouds

Arista Any Cloud brings consistency to the cloud network and reduces complexity, so network professionals can deploy networks in hybrid clouds like they do in data centers.

Arista reaches for the hybrid clouds
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Many years ago, when Arista Networks was in its infancy, its charismatic and sometimes controversial (at least to the folks at Cisco) CEO talked about how the company’s software-first approach would disrupt the networking industry. Just a few years later, the company stands a $1.7 billion revenue company with a dominant position in the webscale industry and a market cap of over $13 billion, so clearly CEO Jayshree Ullal’s prophecy came true.

Arista’s software rigor enabled the company to quickly jump into verticals where low latency and high performance mattered. Also, because of Arista’s software prowess, the company has been able to expand its addressable market to see to the networking needs of dense virtualization and containerized environments, as well as private cloud deployments, and quickly adapt the latest and greatest silicon.

+ Also on Network World: Why hybrid cloud is the future of enterprise IT +

This week, Arista expanded its reach into the world of hybrid clouds with its Any Cloud software platform. The value proposition should be fairly easy to understand. Private data centers have grown in complexity and require a network that can scale quickly, be highly resilient, be secure and be easy to manage. Hence the growth of leaf-spine architectures. 

Now extrapolate the complexity of networking into the cloud where the growth of networks in those environments has been primarily ad hoc. As soon as the cloud network grows to any moderate size, complexity will overwhelm network operations and become an inhibitor to scaling the cloud. Ideally, network architects should be able to deploy a similar network in public and private clouds as they do in data centers.

Arista Any Cloud makes it easier to scale to the cloud 

Arista’s Any Cloud uses its vEOS router to bring the same operating system (EOS) that runs as a hypervisor package to let organizations build a network in the cloud with a consistent set of features and architecture that they have in their data centers. The single software image gives customers uniformity when it comes to features, APIs and management tasks, making it much easier to scale the cloud. 

The solution also includes Arista’s CloudVision technology that enables the following capabilities:

  • Zero touch provisioning to rapidly provision routing services
  • Streamlined network operations across private and public clouds via automation
  • State streaming from real-time telemetry
  • Analytics engine for event correlation and anomaly detection
  • Increased visualization through a common dashboard 

Visibility across all cloud environments

Any Cloud also includes something called a “Cloud Tracer,” which pulls data and telemetry information from all its cloud platforms to track availability and visibility metrics across the entire cloud environment, including public clouds, hybrid clouds, direct connections and cloud exchange points. An easy way to think about Cloud Tracer is that it provides end-to-end visibility across the clouds similar to the role its VM and container tracers play in those environments. 

Initially, Arista Any Cloud will support the following cloud environments:

  • Public cloud: Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure
  • Private cloud: Microsoft Azure Stack, VMware private cloud and KVM
  • Cloud exchange: Equinix, which provides direct connection to over 70 clouds 

Arista’s vEOS router is in beta now, but it will be made generally available in Q4 of 2017. The cost will be a monthly subscription of $295 per month per instance. Cloud Tracer will be made available in Q4, as well, in the latest version of EOS and is part of the Cloud Vision subscription.

Hybrid clouds are rapidly becoming the norm, and network professionals need to be ready. A high degree of rigor is typically used when architecting a network in a private data center, but the haphazard way networks have grown in cloud environments will quickly create a scaling problem. Arista’s Any Cloud brings consistency to the cloud network, so network professionals can think of the hybrid environment as one network instead of a set of islands.

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