Written by Mike Young on Tuesday, 24 of September , 2013 at 6:29 am
In this article from the 5th, http://bit.ly/17GTsst, Marc Cohn says many good things, but seems to feel the bulk of the attention is on the management side of things, and that little attention has been given to Networking:
The NFV Use Cases are intended to drive the Virtualization Requirements, which in turn drive the End-to-End Architecture. NFV encompasses functionality in the compute, storage, and network domains. To date, the majority of the effort has been focused on the software virtualization framework, along with management and orchestration. Consequently, limited attention has been paid to the network.
I’d add that even less attention has been paid to Storage. There are so many things to consider when it comes to that — block vs file, scaleout vs scalein, what protocols, security schemes, etc. The list goes on and on.
Lately, I spend a lot of time thinking about hardware accelerators. The simple reality is the bottleneck is the storage part of the infrastructure, when it comes to virtualization. With that said, we still need the acceleration as well. And much time has been spent in the INF working group to discuss this.
Management and Orchestration (MANO) and SWA (Software Architecture) have their challenges primarily because it’s quite difficult to get multiple vendors to agree on APIs that are normally deemed proprietary. Often, software has to be re-architected to support a vendor-agnostic methodology. And when you consider that NFV is about the WHOLE system, e.g., Compute, Networking, Hypervisor, Application, Storage, Management, Business Logic, etc., that’s quite a lot of cats to try and herd.
Just felt the need to elaborate on his article as the INF working group meets at Brocade for the next couple of days to hash out all of these implications.
One of the reasons I love NFV is it’s where the rubber meets the road.
Wish us luck!
Written by Mike Young on Monday, 23 of September , 2013 at 6:44 am
It has been a couple years since I last posted. I am not quite sure that I lost my way, but I certainly lost my motivation. Frankly, nothing really interested me. It was all garbage, a distraction or some ruse. And I needed to find something that I could be passionate about again. Well, Network Functions Virtualization (aka NFV) is just such a thing.
On the surface of things, the NFV was formed to do something that others have already been doing, which is to take physical appliances and run them inside of virtual machines. But this is where we depart from the pack and I get to become a bit more controversial. NFV really stands to overhaul how we build our data centers.
Now, there are plenty of people who’ll try to contrast NFV with say SDN (Software Defined Networking), but they’re probably quite stupid. The two have very little, if anything, to do with one another. More likely, you will find people equating NFV to being almost entirely about cheaper hardware. And they’d be wrong as well, although a bit more accurate.
NFV was started by Operators. For those of you not sure what I’m referring to, I’m talking about those companies that you probably take for granted as they provide you those data, texting and talky capabilities over your phone. Talk about an unappreciated bunch. Think about each time you Skype over your cell phone, just to avoid consuming minutes or long distance. Now picture the poor blokes that don’t get a pay raise because you just robbed their company of revenue.
Okay, so maybe it’s not quite that bad. But it is bad in their industry as they compete with the likes of the Googles, Alibabas and Tencents of the world. They’re the wire that transports the hot services. And it’s the guys making the hot services that are actually making the money and getting the ridiculous valuations.
Now, I’m not going to try to right the world here. Instead, I’m just gonna tell you that I see an opportunity and I’m capitalizing on it. That opportunity is to take various open source software — best of breed — and to unify the management interfaces at all levels.
It might be natural to think this to be a rather trivial exercise and something that vendors or even open source maintainers could do themselves, but I don’t believe that to be the case. Consider open source maintainers for a moment. They really don’t generally have the time or the motivation to do this. And what standard will they use, considering there really is no standard currently? It’d be more likely for a vendor to do this. But the challenge there is interoperability with other vendors. You see, vendors have a need to maintain some level of competitive edge. And while I would suggest that integration, testing, and building the best “whole” product is a great way of doing that, they will no doubt face the temptation to differentiate themselves at the management API, as well.
So, in my warped madness, I have decided to do what I have done for years now and to fork various projects. But rather than just take them and incorporate them into an appliance of my own, I’ve decided to make them available via a new portal I’m launching at Yúnifai.com over the next few weeks.
You might wonder how I came up with such a strange name. Well, it’s easy. It’s getting increasingly more difficult to get good, easy domains with a “.com” extension. So you have to be somewhat clever about it. Also, “Yún” (or 云) is the Chinese pronunciation for “Cloud”. I work for a Chinese company with over 150,000 personnel and find it amazing that no one else has drawn the connection to this. But at the end of the day, when we discuss unifying our various software and hardware components, aren’t we primarily doing it for the cloud? Well, that was my thought at least.
In addition to unifying (or maybe I should start saying Yunifaing) the management interfaces, we need to optimize the architecture and start getting rid of some of the excess abstraction layers and copies that go on in a virtualized world. NFV, no offense to Microsoft, is very likely going to be built upon Linux as the core operating system. If we’re talking about Linux as the Host OS and Linux as the guest OS, do we really need to replicate so much? I don’t think so. Instead, we need to strive for a collection of open source components that can work together in a highly optimal fashion. And that will require vision, a strong will and much tequila. I do not envision this to be an easy road ahead. And I’m sure many will consider this far too ambitious. And I can live with that. I’ve been told so many worse things over the years.
There are too many reasons why the communications and IT industries really need the “next” model for open source development. Think about what Linus does and leads inside of the Linux kernel. Sure, we’re talking about some brilliant software designers doing some fantastic work. But for all of that to work so well is largely the product of one highly anal individual and his drive towards perfection. Many fault him for this. I applaud him. This has to occur at the application and hypervisor level in order for NFV to really make much sense. Now, if you think I might be somewhat right on that point, then please tell me how it can be done more efficiently. I am always open to suggestions.
I am hoping that this renewed energy won’t die off any time soon.
Be back with more soon!
Written by Mike Young on Saturday, 24 of December , 2011 at 8:12 am
In all fairness, stupidity is apparently season-less. But my particular gripe is currently reserved for those idiots who haven’t the foggiest idea how to conduct business on Craigslist or Ebay. However, before I go into detail, I must say there are two classes of idiots: there are those selling the goods and there are those buying the goods.
First of all, if you’re going to buy products on Ebay or Craigslist, you’ve really got to ask yourself what it is you’re trying to accomplish. If your goal is to spend as much money as you’ve got, then by all means carry on.
If, however, you’re looking for a bargain, then shouldn’t you first do your homework to see what the going rate is for the particular item you’re trying to buy? One could rationally deduce that a bargain is getting an item for less than the going rate of retail. But an item might be priced the same as elsewhere. But the combination of free shipping and zero taxes could also help to make something appear as a bargain. But under no circumstances would I ever consider a bargain to consist of paying more for an item along with jumping through more hoops. That just seems silly to me.
Despite my plea to rational thought, I never cease to be amazed at the copious quantity of people who routinely bid more than retail on an item on Ebay. Perhaps they’re simply caught up in the competitive aspect of outbidding another. I’ll leave some room for that possibility. But if you’re an adrenaline junky, you might be better suited to other vents– possibly Online Poker or something else where you might have a chance of coming out on top.
Then there are those individuals trying to market their leftovers, castaways or simply trying to sell off their possessions during such difficult economic times. Please do me a favor and do a little research before you list your items. If, for example, you purchased a TV for $599 a year ago and that same TV or a newer model is now available for $399, you shouldn’t price your TV for what you previously paid. Nor should you price it at the current price. A used, aged TV should sell under the retail value, not at or above it.
And this is just based on a recent experience. I’ve been trying to pick up a used or refurbished Macbook Pro or Macbook Air for a while now. But I cannot get over how people are expecting to get several hundreds of dollars more than what one can be bought off the Apple site. Do they seriously believe that people don’t look there? They must. And evidently there must be people who refuse to look before buying.
Another area of gripe for me is in the area of responsiveness. If you’re going to list an item for sale and truly wish to sell it, then please use an email address that you’re going to actually monitor. I cannot tell you how many times I will get a response to an inquiry several days after I’ve made it, only to hear that the person “rarely checks” that particular address. Well, then use a different address, Stupid!
Despite these pet peeves, I still find it rather useful to live in such a day and age where good deals can be found. The other night, my youngest got a bit reckless playing a game of Wii bowling and decided to disobey one of the family rules– to use the tether on the remote. Contrary to popular belief, those warnings aren’t a myth. He actually did launch that remote through the family room TV.
Well, after dealing with swapping out a transmission on my 2007 Explorer, swapping out the breaks, swapping out the passenger side front bearing assembly and giving it its first tune-up in 130,000 miles, I was simply in no mood to buy another TV. Fortunately, Craigslist revealed needier folks than me. I was actually able to pickup a nice 42″ Sony Bravia LCD for a mere $150. That’s a tough deal to pass up.
Anyway, stupid is as stupid does, according to Forrest Gump. So stop doing stupid things if you buy and sell online.
Category: Encouraging Bits,Misc. Rants
Written by Mike Young on Saturday, 9 of July , 2011 at 7:01 am
I don’t know if “Life is a Highway”, but it is very much akin to driving the open road. You’ve got those that drive with reckless abandon and with no thought for the rules or for others; those who wanna drive 20 mph under the speed limit in the fast lane, trying to force everyone to succumb to their lowest common denominator way of living; and the vast majority who simply want to engage cruise control and get what they’re legally entitled to in life– no more, no less.
Category: Encouraging Bits,Misc. Rants