I recently was able to sit down with Pete Chadwick, Senior Product Manager for Cloud Infrastructure at SUSE, for a webinar on demystifying private cloud network challenges.
Our goal was to educate people about best practices as well as hidden risks when deploying an OpenStack-powered private cloud environment. The focus was on helping IT teams improve the way they deploy and manage such clouds, especially when it comes to dealing with the complexity of networking.
We had a great group of attendees. Pete polled them about their familiarity with OpenStack and the results showed the majority of attendees were looking for education.
- Learning – 80%
- In production – 7.3%
- In test mode – 10.9%
- Tearing my hair out trying to get it to work – 1.8%
Admittedly, it’s a complex process, but we know that enterprises are looking at private cloud deployments to lower costs, increase agility, and increase control and security.
Pete noted that reducing costs is a given for new IT initiatives. Businesses want to react more rapidly to changing business requirements and set up services faster. Often IT teams look at implementing OpenStack due to the open source flexibility and cost savings.
While it is possible organizations can implement OpenStack as a “do-it-yourself” solution, many organizations have better results leveraging comprehensive and supported versions like the one SUSE offers. It’s pre-configured, so the process can be simpler, scalable, and repeatable. Pete noted that SUSE has had customers deploy in hours or days, rather than weeks.
One of the pieces SUSE provides is the Neutron network adapter, which lets IT access virtualized network services such as switches or routers, or extensions to infrastructure such as those Infoblox offers.
We also talked about cloud adoption challenges, noting that in industry surveys, the question of management and operational processes tends to top the list. The problem is that the promise of cloud is fast, almost instantaneous, results. The reality is less so, because of the collaboration necessary between the server teams who manage cloud deployment, and the network team that owns core services like IP addressing and DNS provisioning.
The hidden Achilles heel of cloud deployments is tied to the lack automation from a network perspective. Manual processes for core network servers increase the amount of handoffs and bobbles along the way. Add in a lack of correlated visibility across traditional and virtual instances. These lurking dangers are what slows the process into days and weeks when the expectation is minutes and hours.
I asked attendees about their DDI-related workload within private cloud deployments, and 78.8 percent characterized it as either extremely or somewhat challenging, as well as time-consuming.
That’s where Infoblox comes in: removing the pain points for cloud deployment by automating the provisioning between OpenStack, network functions, and the core network services of DNS, DHCP, and IPAM. With that automation, enterprises can improve agility and increase cost savings. While DNS and IP address management might not be the sexiest topic to consider when thinking about private cloud, ask yourself what works if DNS is messed up or you have duplicate IP addresses. Nothing.
For the full playback of the webinar, visit https://www.infoblox.com/resources/webinar/demystifying-private-cloud-network-challenges.