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Cisco Enterprise Networks SDA, SDWAN and ISE test for System Engineers
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Killexams : Networking Nuggets of Knowledge
What other Windows 10 updates can we expect this year?

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The Anniversary Update was a major update in 2016 to Windows 10. But what else can we expect this year?

Simulations you can expect in Cisco's ICND1 exam

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You need hands-on practice with these syllabus if you want to pass the Interconnecting Cisco Networking Devices Part 1 (ICND1) exam.

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Cisco VIRL heads to the cloud

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This article details the new cloud-based option for Cisco VIRL.

Cisco finally updates the CCDA certification

It has been years since the Cisco Certified Design Associate certification has received a refresh. It has finally happened.

The Cisco CCNA gets cloudy

This article summarizes the new CCNA Cloud certification.

Using Cisco VIRL for ASA Emulation

This post demonstrates the amazing power of Cisco VIRL for emulating the Adaptive Security Appliance from Cisco Systems.

Making use of Cisco's labs to practice for certifications

Making use of Cisco's labs to practice for certifications

Students have been asking for years for Cisco to provide affordable, hands-on labs for practicing the various certifications. Cisco has been responding lately, with CCIE Labs and VIRL providing resources for practicing for...

Backup and Restore on the Cisco ASA 9.3

This post examines the new Backup and Restore options on the Cisco ASA.

Mobile apps that have changed my life: OmniFocus

Mobile apps that have changed my life: OmniFocus

In this part of my ongoing series, we take a look at an app I cannot imagine myself doing without in the area of time and project management.

Project Spartan makes it to the Windows 10 Technical Preview

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The latest Tech Preview gives most users their first glimpse of the new browser.

Mobile apps that have changed my life: Fitness apps

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In this blog post of my series on mobile apps, I hit some key fitness apps that I love.

Mobile apps that have changed my life: Blinkist

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In this new series of posts, Anthony Sequeira will share some mobile apps that have truly changed his life for the better.

Keeping up with Cisco's ASA 9.3 code

In this post, we examine some of the new features appearing in 9.3 code.

Interested in IT security? Insurance companies hope so!

Interested in IT security? Insurance companies hope so!

Cybercrime breaks into the top ten threats for corporations today.

The Cisco ASA 1000V

Many have heard about Cisco's virtual switch for VMware environments - the 1000V - fewer have heard about the virtual firewall possible with the ASA 1000V. This article provides a nice overview of this exciting technology.

Cisco's Latest CCNP Security Updates

This post describes the new courses and exams that make up the 2014 version of the CCNP Security Certification from Cisco Systems.

Tips for Working with CCIE Lab test Proctors

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Killexams : Answering the top 10 questions about supercloud

As we exited the isolation economy last year, we introduced supercloud as a term to describe something new that was happening in the world of cloud computing.

In this Breaking Analysis, we address the ten most frequently asked questions we get on supercloud. Today we’ll address the following frequently asked questions:

1. In an industry full of hype and buzzwords, why does anyone need a new term?

2. Aren’t hyperscalers building out superclouds? We’ll try to answer why the term supercloud connotes something different from a hyperscale cloud.

3. We’ll talk about the problems superclouds solve.

4. We’ll further define the critical aspects of a supercloud architecture.

5. We often get asked: Isn’t this just multicloud? Well, we don’t think so and we’ll explain why.

6. In an earlier episode we introduced the notion of superPaaS  – well, isn’t a plain vanilla PaaS already a superPaaS? Again – we don’t think so and we’ll explain why.

7. Who will actually build (and who are the players currently building) superclouds?

8. What workloads and services will run on superclouds?

9. What are some examples of supercloud?

10. Finally, we’ll answer what you can expect next on supercloud from SiliconANGLE and theCUBE.

Why do we need another buzzword?

Late last year, ahead of Amazon Web Services Inc.’s re:Invent conference, we were inspired by a post from Jerry Chen called Castles in the Cloud. In that blog he introduced the idea that there were submarkets emerging in cloud that presented opportunities for investors and entrepreneurs, that the big cloud vendors weren’t going to suck all the value out of the industry. And so we introduced this notion of supercloud to describe what we saw as a value layer emerging above the hyperscalers’ “capex gift.”

It turns out that we weren’t the only ones using the term, as both Cornell and MIT have used the phrase in somewhat similar but different contexts.

The point is something new was happening in the AWS and other ecosystems. It was more than infrastructure as a service and platform as a service and wasn’t just software as a service running in the cloud.

It was a new architecture that integrates infrastructure, unique platform attributes and software to solve new problems that the cloud vendors in our view weren’t addressing by themselves. It seemed to us that the ecosystem was pursuing opportunities across clouds that went beyond conventional implementations of multi-cloud.

In addition, we felt this trend pointed to structural change going on at the industry level that supercloud metaphorically was highlighting.

So that’s the background on why we felt a new catchphrase was warranted. Love it or hate it… it’s memorable.

Industry structures have always mattered in tech

To that last point about structural industry transformation: Andy Rappaport is sometimes credited with identifying the shift from the vertically integrated mainframe era to the horizontally fragmented personal computer- and microprocessor-based era in his Harvard Business Review article from 1991.

In fact, it was actually David Moschella, an International Data Corp. senior vice president at the time, who introduced the concept in 1987, a full four years before Rappaport’s article was published. Moschella, along with IDC’s head of research Will Zachmann, saw that it was clear Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp., Seagate Technology and other would replace the system vendors’ dominance.

In fact, Zachmann accurately predicted in the late 1980s the demise of IBM, well ahead of its epic downfall when the company lost approximately 75% of its value. At an IDC Briefing Session (now called Directions), Moschella put forth a graphic that looked similar to the first two concepts on the chart below.

We don’t have to review the shift from IBM as the epicenter of the industry to Wintel – that’s well-understood.

What isn’t as widely discussed is a structural concept Moschella put out in 2018 in his book “Seeing Digital,” which introduced the idea of the Matrix shown on the righthand side of this chart. Moschella posited that a new digital platform of services was emerging built on top of the internet, hyperscale clouds and other intelligent technologies that would define the next era of computing.

He used the term matrix because the conceptual depiction included horizontal technology rows, like the cloud… but for the first time included connected industry columns. Moschella pointed out that historically, industry verticals had a closed value chain or stack of research and development, production, distribution, etc., and that expertise in that specific vertical was critical to success. But now, because of digital and data, for the first time, companies were able to jump industries and compete using data. Amazon in content, payments and groceries… Apple in payments and content… and so forth. Data was now the unifying enabler and this marked a changing structure of the technology landscape.

Listen to David Moschella explain the Matrix and its implications on a new generation of leadership in tech.

So the term supercloud is meant to imply more than running in hyperscale clouds. Rather, it’s a new type of digital platform comprising a combination of multiple technologies – enabled by cloud scale – with new industry participants from financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, energy, media and virtually all industries. Think of it as kind of an extension of “every company is a software company.”

Basically, thanks to the cloud, every company in every industry now has the opportunity to build their own supercloud. We’ll come back to that.

Aren’t hyperscale clouds superclouds?

Let’s address what’s different about superclouds relative to hyperscale clouds.

This one’s pretty straightforward and obvious. Hyperscale clouds are walled gardens where they want your data in their cloud and they want to keep you there. Sure, every cloud player realizes that not all data will go to their cloud, so they’re meeting customers where their data lives with initiatives such Amazon Outposts and Azure Arc and Google Anthos. But at the end of the day, the more homogeneous they can make their environments, the better control, security, costs and performance they can deliver. The more complex the environment, the more difficult to deliver on their promises and the less margin left for them to capture.

Will the hyperscalers get more serious about cross cloud services? Maybe, but they have plenty of work to do within their own clouds. And today at least they appear to be providing the tools that will enable others to build superclouds on top of their platforms. That said, we never say never when it comes to companies such as AWS. And for sure we see AWS delivering more integrated digital services such as Amazon Connect to solve problems in a specific domain, call centers in this case.

What problems do superclouds solve?

We’ve all seen the stats from IDC or Gartner or whomever that customers on average use more than one cloud. And we know these clouds operate in disconnected silos for the most part. That’s a problem because each cloud requires different skills. The development environment is different, as is the operating environment, with different APIs and primitives and management tools that are optimized for each respective hyperscale cloud. Their functions and value props don’t extend to their competitors’ clouds. Why would they?

As a result, there’s friction when moving between different clouds. It’s hard to share data, move work, secure and govern data, and enforce organizational policies and edicts across clouds.

Supercloud is an architecture designed to create a single environment that enables management of workloads and data across clouds in an effort to take out complexity, accelerate application development, streamline operations and share data safely irrespective of location.

Pretty straightforward, but nontrivial, which is why we often ask company chief executives and execs if stock buybacks and dividends will yield as much return as building out superclouds that solve really specific problems and create differentiable value for their firms.

What are the critical attributes of a supercloud?

Let’s dig in a bit more to the architectural aspects of supercloud. In other words… what are the salient attributes that define supercloud?

First, a supercloud runs a set of specific services, designed to solve a unique problem. Superclouds offer seamless, consumption-based services across multiple distributed clouds.

Supercloud leverages the underlying cloud-native tooling of a hyperscale cloud but it’s optimized for a specific objective that aligns with the problem it’s solving. For example, it may be optimized for cost or low latency or sharing data or governance or security or higher performance networking. But the point is, the collection of services delivered is focused on unique value that isn’t being delivered by the hyperscalers across clouds.

A supercloud abstracts the underlying and siloed primitives of the native PaaS layer from the hyperscale cloud and using its own specific platform-as-a-service tooling, creates a common experience across clouds for developers and users. In other words, the superPaaS ensures that the developer and user experience is identical, irrespective of which cloud or location is running the workload.

And it does so in an efficient manner, meaning it has the metadata knowledge and management that can optimize for latency, bandwidth, recovery, data sovereignty or whatever unique value the supercloud is delivering for the specific use cases in the domain.

A supercloud comprises a superPaaS capability that allows ecosystem partners to add incremental value on top of the supercloud platform to fill gaps, accelerate features and innovate. A superPaaS can use open tooling but applies those development tools to create a unique and specific experience supporting the design objectives of the supercloud.

Supercloud services can be infrastructure-related, application services, data services, security services, users services, etc., designed and packaged to bring unique value to customers… again that the hyperscalers are not delivering across clouds or on-premises.

Finally, these attributes are highly automated where possible. Superclouds take a page from hyperscalers in terms of minimizing human intervention wherever possible, applying automation to the specific problem they’re solving.

Isn’t supercloud just another term for multicloud?

What we’d say to that is: Perhaps, but not really. Call it multicloud 2.0 if you want to invoke a commonly used format. But as Dell’s Chuck Whitten proclaimed, multicloud by design is different than multicloud by default.

What he means is that, to date, multicloud has largely been a symptom of multivendor… or of M&A. And when you look at most so-called multicloud implementations, you see things like an on-prem stack wrapped in a container and hosted on a specific cloud.

Or increasingly a technology vendor has done the work of building a cloud-native version of its stack and running it on a specific cloud… but historically it has been a unique experience within each cloud with no connection between the cloud silos. And certainly not a common developer experience with metadata management across clouds.

Supercloud sets out to build incremental value across clouds and above hyperscale capex that goes beyond cloud compatibility within each cloud. So if you want to call it multicloud 2.0, that’s fine.

We choose to call it supercloud.

Isn’t plain old PaaS already supercloud?

Well, we’d say no. That supercloud and its corresponding superPaaS layer gives the freedom to store, process, manage, secure and connect islands of data across a continuum with a common developer experience across clouds.

Importantly, the sets of services are designed to support the supercloud’s objectives – e.g., data sharing or data protection or storage and retrieval or cost optimization or ultra-low latency, etc. In other words, the services offered are specific to that supercloud and will vary by each offering. OpenShift, for example, can be used to construct a superPaaS but in and of itself isn’t a superPaaS. It’s generic.

The point is that a supercloud and its inherent superPaaS will be optimized to solve specific problems such as low latency for distributed databases or fast backup and recovery and ransomware protection — highly specific use cases that the supercloud is designed to solve for.

SaaS as well is a subset of supercloud. Most SaaS platforms either run in their own cloud or have bits and pieces running in public clouds (e.g. analytics). But the cross-cloud services are few and far between or often nonexistent. We believe SaaS vendors must evolve and adopt supercloud to offer distributed solutions across cloud platforms and stretching out to the near and far edge.

Who is building superclouds?

Another question we often get is: Who has a supercloud and who is building a supercloud? Who are the contenders?

Well, most companies that consider themselves cloud players will, we believe, be building superclouds. Above is a common Enterprise Technology Research graphic we like to show with Net Score or spending momentum on the Y axis and Overlap or pervasiveness in the ETR surveys on the X axis. This is from the April survey of well over 1,000 chief executive officers and information technology buyers. And we’ve randomly chosen a number of players we think are in the supercloud mix and we’ve included the hyperscalers because they are the enablers.

We’ve added some of those nontraditional industry players we see building superclouds such as Capital One, Goldman Sachs and Walmart, in deference to Moschella’s observation about verticals. This goes back to every company being a software company. And rather than pattern-matching an outdated SaaS model we see a new industry structure emerging where software and data and tools specific to an industry will lead the next wave of innovation via the buildout of intelligent digital platforms.

We’ve talked a lot about Snowflake Inc.’s Data Cloud as an example of supercloud, as well as the momentum of Databricks Inc. (not shown above). VMware Inc. is clearly going after cross-cloud services. Basically every large company we see is either pursuing supercloud initiatives or thinking about it. Dell Technologies Inc., for example, showed Project Alpine at Dell Technologies World – that’s a supercloud in development. Snowflake introducing a new app dev capability based on its SuperPaaS (our term, of course, it doesn’t use the phrase), MongoDB Inc., Couchbase Inc., Nutanix Inc., Veeam Software, CrowdStrike Holdings Inc., Okta Inc. and Zscaler Inc. Even the likes of Cisco Systems Inc. and Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co., in our view, will be building superclouds.

Although ironically, as an aside, Fidelma Russo, HPE’s chief technology officer, said on theCUBE she wasn’t a fan of cloaking mechanisms. But when we spoke to HPE’s head of storage services, Omer Asad, we felt his team is clearly headed in a direction that we would consider supercloud. It could be semantics or it could be that parts of HPE are in a better position to execute on supercloud. Storage is an obvious starting point. The same can be said of Dell.

Listen to Fidelma Russo explain her aversion to building a manager of managers.

And we’re seeing emerging companies like Aviatrix Systems Inc. (network performance), Starburst Data Inc. (self-service analytics for distributed data), Clumio Inc. (data protection – not supercloud today but working on it) and others building versions of superclouds that solve a specific problem for their customers. And we’ve spoken to independent software vendors such as Adobe Systems Inc., Automatic Data Processing LLC and UiPath Inc., which are all looking at new ways to go beyond the SaaS model and add value within cloud ecosystems, in particular building data services that are unique to their value proposition and will run across clouds.

So yeah – pretty much every tech vendor with any size or momentum and new industry players are coming out of hiding and competing… building superclouds. Many that look a lot like Moschella’s matrix with machine intelligence and artificial intelligence and blockchains and virtual reality and gaming… all enabled by the internet and hyperscale clouds.

It’s moving fast and it’s the future, in our opinion, so don’t get too caught up in the past or you’ll be left behind.

What are some examples of superclouds?

We’ve given many in the past, but let’s try to be a bit more specific. Below we cite a few and we’ll answer two questions in one section here: What workloads and services will run in superclouds and what are some examples?

Analytics. Snowflake is the furthest along with its data cloud in our view. It’s a supercloud optimized for data sharing, governance, query performance, security, ecosystem enablement and ultimately monetization. Snowflake is now bringing in new data types and open-source tooling and it ticks the attribute boxes on supercloud we laid out earlier.

Converged databases. Running transaction and analytics workloads. Take a look at what Couchbase is doing with Capella and how it’s enabling stretching the cloud to the edge with Arm-based platforms and optimizing for low latency across clouds and out to the edge.

Document database workloads. Look at MongoDB – a developer-friendly platform that with Atlas is moving to a supercloud model running document databases very efficiently. Accommodating analytic workloads and creating a common developer experience across clouds.

Data science workloads. For example, Databricks is bringing a common experience for data scientists and data engineers driving machine intelligence into applications and fixing the broken data lake with the emergence of the lakehouse.

General-purpose workloads. For example, VMware’s domain. Very clearly there’s a need to create a common operating environment across clouds and on-prem and out to the edge and VMware is hard at work on that — managing and moving workloads, balancing workloads and being able to recover very quickly across clouds.

Network routing. This is the primary focus of Aviatrix, building what we consider a supercloud and optimizing network performance and automating security across clouds.

Industry-specific workloads. For example, Capital One announcing its cost optimization platform for Snowflake – piggybacking on Snowflake’s supercloud. We believe it’s going to test that concept outside its own organization and expand across other clouds as Snowflake grows its business beyond AWS. Walmart Inc. is working with Microsoft to create an on-prem to Azure experience – yes, that counts. We’ve written about what Goldman is doing and you can bet dollars to donuts that Oracle Corp. will be building a supercloud in healthcare with its Cerner acquisition.

Supercloud is everywhere you look. Sorry, naysayers. It’s happening.

What’s next from theCUBE?

With all the industry buzz and debate about the future, John Furrier and the team at SiliconANGLE have decided to host an event on supercloud. We’re motivated and inspired to further the conversation. TheCUBE on Supercloud is coming.

On Aug. 9 out of our Palo Alto studios we’ll be running a live program on the topic. We’ve reached out to a number of industry participants — VMware, Snowflake, Confluent, Sky High Security, Hashicorp, Cloudflare and Red Hat — to get the perspective of technologists building superclouds.

And we’ve invited a number of vertical industry participants in financial services, healthcare and retail that we’re excited to have on along with analysts, thought leaders and investors.

We’ll have more details in the coming weeks, but for now if you’re interested please reach out to us with how you think you can advance the discussion and we’ll see if we can fit you in.

So mark your calendars and stay tuned for more information.

Keep in touch

Thanks to Alex Myerson, who does the production, podcasts and media workflows for Breaking Analysis. Special thanks to Kristen Martin and Cheryl Knight, who help us keep our community informed and get the word out, and to Rob Hof, our editor in chief at SiliconANGLE.

Remember we publish each week on Wikibon and SiliconANGLE. These episodes are all available as podcasts wherever you listen.

Email david.vellante@siliconangle.com, DM @dvellante on Twitter and comment on our LinkedIn posts.

Also, check out this ETR Tutorial we created, which explains the spending methodology in more detail. Note: ETR is a separate company from Wikibon and SiliconANGLE. If you would like to cite or republish any of the company’s data, or inquire about its services, please contact ETR at legal@etr.ai.

Here’s the full video analysis:

All statements made regarding companies or securities are strictly beliefs, points of view and opinions held by SiliconANGLE media, Enterprise Technology Research, other guests on theCUBE and guest writers. Such statements are not recommendations by these individuals to buy, sell or hold any security. The content presented does not constitute investment advice and should not be used as the basis for any investment decision. You and only you are responsible for your investment decisions.

Disclosure: Many of the companies cited in Breaking Analysis are sponsors of theCUBE and/or clients of Wikibon. None of these firms or other companies have any editorial control over or advanced viewing of what’s published in Breaking Analysis.

Image: Rawpixel.com/Adobe Stock

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Killexams : Innovation, The Cloud And Cisco's Fight To Maintain Market Leadership

Dilbert, that searingly honest and gut-wrenchingly funny portal into corporate life, once made sport of the universal obsession companies have with data. In one strip, there’s a typically befuddled exchange between Dilbert and the Pointy-Haired Boss. Dilbert reveals that a new product has failed its own quality tests. “Do I have permission to fake the test data,” enquires Dilbert. “I didn’t even know that data can be real,” replies the Pointy-Haired Boss.

One area of absolute certainty that that doesn’t require measurement by the data-obsessed (real or imagined) is the growth of the importance of technology in global business.  ‘Every industry and every country will be tech driven. GE is a tech company. Walmart is a tech company. Verizon is a tech company,” John Chambers, the executive chairman of Cisco, told an audience at the World Economic Forum in Davos earlier this year.

We hold this truth to be self-evident and indeed Chambers’ comments are equally unsurprising given that he heads one the world’s largest companies, a world leading technology company which has been at the prow of the Internet revolution. With a market capitalization just north of $163 billion Cisco clearly knows not only how to sustain growth, but how and when to invest in the right technologies, too.

Cisco’s record of sustained growth for close on 35 years is a feat which is not easily managed in every company, and certainly not in every industry. Indeed, Cisco’s own playing field, which brings together IT and telecommunications, once quaintly termed ‘convergence’, is one sector where the complacent and idle are liable to get killed by the oncoming traffic of innovation.

Cisco sitting pretty in the center of Silicon Valley has been one company serving a market where the sun will never set, or so most investors and industry analysts have believed.  But in the same way that Tier 1 carriers could never have imagined that they would be competing against a social networking giant like Facebook, leading network vendors now find themselves battling such companies as Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform.

Thus today, fewer firms need to buy their own networking equipment. In place of paying for ‘end-to-end network’ solutions from vendors such as Cisco, big operators like Amazon and Microsoft can provide a wide array of cloud-related products and services, including infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and software-as-a-service solutions. All this gives rise to an important question: Can Cisco innovate?

How To Compete?

Cisco is tackling this threat to its market in several ways. It’s offering tailor-made products to the big cloud providers and has improved its software and services business to ensure more stable revenues. More interestingly, in recognition of the sophisticated AI tools that the public cloud vendors now offer as part of their tool set Cisco has unveiled ‘intent-based’ AI networking solutions, built on automation and machine learning.

Cisco says: “By building a more intuitive network, we are creating an intelligent platform with unmatched security for today and for the future that propels businesses forward and creates new opportunities for people and organizations everywhere.”

At a recent Intrapreneurship Conference in Stockholm, Mathilde Durvy, Innovation Program Lead at Cisco, dispels doubt on its ability to rise up to the challenges posed by its competitors. She writes: “Cisco knew that before they could disrupt markets and competitors with breakout innovations, they first had to disrupt themselves. So, they shook things up – in a big way. Cisco launched the Innovate Everywhere Challenge to capture and develop venture ideas from their employees, and develop entrepreneurial skills and culture within the organization. It was an enormous success, with almost half of their 72,000 global workforce participating. And now, in their second year, they are applying what they learned to make the challenge even better.”

It’s clear that faced with potential annihilation by the new cloud-based kids on the block, Cisco needed to kick itself into gear, and it’s pretty certain that it knows its best resource to do just that – its own staff. But, let’s ask our question once more: Can Cisco innovate?

Bill Joy, a co-founder of Sun Microsystems and a long-time technology executive and venture capital investor, put it simply in Fortune magazine some years ago. “Big companies almost never innovate. It’s not that innovation is rare,” Joy says. “It’s occurring everywhere. Which means, mostly, elsewhere.”

In practice, it’s actually very difficult for large companies to innovate, in part because innovative people often prefer to work in smaller, nimbler environments where “No” is not part of the everyday lexicon.  Cisco has long understood this difficulty. Its time-tested response has been to keep a watchful eye open for new and relevant technologies, and simply buy the companies that have developed them, paying handsomely for the privilege. Cisco then uses its market access to provide such technologies faster and more extensive distribution than would otherwise have been likely, generating the volume to justify its generous purchase price. One might argue that Cisco has simply thrown up its hands and said, when it comes to innovation, there’s nothing wrong with ‘not invented here’!

What To Do?

So what is a big company to do when faced with an existential threat like that posed to Cisco by The Cloud? Some companies 3M and Google, to name but two have built a culture of innovation by encouraging large numbers of key staff to spend significant portions of their time playing with new, different, and likely-to-fail ideas that aren’t part of their day jobs. Others create budgets to fund experiments perhaps radical ones, most of which are also likely to fail — proposed by staffers having innovative ideas.

Central to these approaches is embracing, rather than punishing, experimentation and failure, something that’s anathema to most large companies, where, under short-term pressure for quarter-to-quarter earnings growth, risk and uncertainty are dirty words.  This helps attract innovative types who might otherwise choose to work elsewhere. And it sends the rest of the organisation a message that innovation and risk travel hand-in-hand. As the saying goes in Silicon Valley, regarding any entrepreneur who has led a venture that’s failed, “He or she has received an education on someone else’s dollar.”

So, well done to Cisco for recognising the threats, the opportunities and the significant benefits potentially delivered by its own people in terms of successfully reshaping its place in the technology ecosystem. But the challenges and the opportunities obviously won’t end there. Some observers believe that a brighter future for Cisco may well lie in developing the tools, the pricing and the services which will perhaps reshape the company altogether, from a tech interconnectivity focused box maker, to a services focused enterprise player.

Will Cisco’s new approach measure up to the challenge? Time will tell!

Mon, 26 Jun 2017 21:18:00 -0500 London Business School en text/html https://www.forbes.com/sites/lbsbusinessstrategyreview/2017/06/27/innovation-the-cloud-and-ciscos-fight-to-maintain-market-leadership/
Killexams : How DevOps works in the enterprise How DevOps works in the enterprise — it's all about rapidity of release, but without sacrificing and compromising on quality in the digital world How DevOps works in the enterprise image

DevOps is an enabler of digital transformation.

How DevOps works in the enterprise is one of key questions business leaders have been asking.

This relatively new discipline, which Atlassian describes as agile applied beyond the software team, is helping businesses release products fast, but without cutting corners — which is “the name of the game at the moment in the digital world”, according to Gordon Cullum, speaking as CTO at Mastek — now technology director at Axiologik.

Increasingly, DevOps is the style in which businesses want to interact with each other in the digital age; it’s about rapidity of release without sacrificing and compromising on quality.

Patrick Callaghan, vice-president, partner CTO at DataStax, goes one step further.

He suggests that businesses “can’t truly function as an enterprise without applying DevOps software development principles…. DevOps in practice is ideal for organisations looking to streamline production, automate processes and build a culture of collaboration within their software teams. DevOps innovators are confident in their code because they both test it and make it fail in order to produce reliable apps.”

DiversityHow important is diversity in implementing a successful DevOps and IT strategy?

The importance of new ideas and embracing new ways of thinking can’t be underestimated when thinking about DevOps and IT. Read here

What is DevOps?

How DevOps works? Before getting into this, it’s important to understand what is DevOps.

Quoting AWS, ‘DevOps is the combination of cultural philosophies, practices, and tools that increases an organisation’s ability to deliver applications and services at high velocity: evolving and improving products at a faster pace than organisations using traditional software development and infrastructure management processes. This speed enables organisations to better serve their customers and compete more effectively in the market.’

This is a very practical explanation, but there are multiple definitions of the term.

It’s often described as a set of evolutionary practices inherited from the ways of agile working, which are more tuned to bringing the delivery and operational support communities closer together. This surrounds using processes and tooling that has been developed over the years for things like test automation, continuous integration, continuous deployment, to enable the faster flow of code. These new releases of code could be new functionality, architectural change or bug fixes.

“It’s a combination of keeping the lights on and changing delivery,” says Cullum.

DevOps resources

DevOps or disappear: 5 reasons business leaders need to embrace development and operational IT integration

What is the right storage software needed for DevOps to be a success?

3 DevOps pitfalls and how to avoid them

DevOps and CloudOps: The connection behind digital transformation acceleration

Why DevOps must become BizDevOps for business and IT collaboration

Best DevOps practices for 2019

The future of DevOps

Reinvigorating an old way of working

Bringing delivery and support together is a throwback to the 1980s and 1990s, “where IT just did IT and you didn’t care whether you asked them to fix a bug or deliver functionality,” continues Cullum.

This ethos is being reinvigorated in DevOps. But the reason it works and is more powerful today is because of the emergence of enabling technologies and new ways of working.

“While, 20 to 30 years ago we may have had JFDI approaches for getting stuff into live environments, what we now have are very controlled, measured processes, brought around by tools such as Puppet and Jenkins — these all create the robust, quality, managed pipeline that allows fast delivery,” explains Cullum.

Culturally, the discipline brings lots of old and new ideas together

Why DevOps now?

The reason DevOps has emerged now is because companies are involved in a highly competitive arms race.

Everything is accelerating so fast from a delivery point of view; if businesses can’t release code quickly, then they are probably already being disrupted. This brings challenges, but also provides advantages if you are already on that curve. Agile work patterns, for example, only really work if the organisation already has a relatively modern architecture.

The other area in the acceleration of DevOps is the emergence of cloud services. Over the last five to 10 years, the cloud has enabled very quick, easy and at times cost effective processes and techniques. These can be spun out in environments, infrastructures, platforms or whole services, and can be wired together very easily.

What this means is that architects are more able to build componentised architectures that are independently able to be released, modified and scaled from each other.

“So modern techniques, such as microservices and even serverless architectures, really accelerate the uptake of DevOps capabilities from a delivery and support point of view within an organisation,” says Cullum.

Bringing all these things together; the rise of cloud, the need to get things out faster but at a high quality, the rise of all the tooling that enables fast pipeline deliveries, changing culture and IT, what you’ve got is DevOps.

According to Statista, 21 per cent of DevOps engineers have added source code management to their DevOps practices, in the aim to accelerate the release of code.

DevOps vs Agile: pulling in the same direction in the enterprise

DevOps vs Agile. How do these two disciplines work in the enterprise, and why are they crucial in moving forward in a collaborative, customer-focused way? Read here

How DevOps works in the enterprise

What is the best approach organisations can take to DevOps? “It’s horses for courses-type conversation,” answers Cullum. By this, he means there are a lot of “complications under the hood”.

The first thing for organisations would be to identify why they want to adopt DevOps, so “they can keep their eyes on the prize”.

“It’s not about a marketing term, it’s not about somebody at c-level saying we want to implement DevOps, go away and do it,” suggests Cullum. “You have to know why you’re trying to do it. What is it you want? Do you want repeatable quality? Do you want cheaper or faster deliveries? Do you recognise a need to modify the architecture,” he asks?

Gordon Cullum looks after Mastek's technology strategy.

Gordon Cullum oversaw digital transformation company Mastek’s technology strategy as its CTO.

The leaders at legacy organisations, such as an older bank with monolithic environments, can’t just send their IT department on a DevOps training programme and expect them to be able to change the way they release software on mainframes. “It isn’t going to work like that,” suggests Cullum. In this scenario, there needs to be an architecture enablement programme that takes place, “which is how these legacy organisations can make sure that the services they deliver through the IT estate can be componentised in a way that delivery teams can run at their own pace.”

So, how DevOps works depends on the journey. There is no simple answer. But, the key takeaways for business leaders would be; don’t underestimate the cultural change required (people have to buy into the idea, similar to digital transformation), don’t rely too much on heavy documentation (you’re not going to know everything up front) and approach risk proactively (don’t be afraid of change).

If business then decide to implement DevOps within teams, from a process and method point of view, then these questions must be addressed; is your architecture able to support it? Is a leadership roadmap in place that creates the environment necessary to start delivering fast, high quality, automated deliveries?

“It’s a good question and requires a very consultative answer,” says Cullum.

Addressing these six steps in the DevOps cycle will lead to organisation success in this discipline. Image source: 6 C’s of DevOps Life Cycle

Addressing these six steps in the DevOps cycle will lead to organisation success in this discipline. Image source: 6 C’s of DevOps Life Cycle.

The DevOps workforce

As with any new disciple, even traditional ones in technology, the skills gap proves irksome. So, when implementing DevOps, should organisations retrain or bring in new talent?

It’s probably a bit of both, but the biggest thing people need is the right attitude. Mastek soon found this, according to Cullum. The programmers, designers and product managers who have been in the industry for 15 to 20 years are sometimes resistant to the change DevOps brings. They need to embrace a rapid change mindset, and accept that delivery and operations need to get closer together.

Generally, however, if “you aren’t already stuck in the mud at a senior level”, individuals in the industry are already well versed in the pace of change and in learning new techniques — they have to be “cross-skilled,” as Cullum describes.

Top DevOps interview mock test revealed

Five experts provide Information Age with their top DevOps interview questions and answers, while revealing the skills and attitudes that impress them the most. Read here

Justifying this, he explains that what Mastek is finding is that it’s easier to train trainee engineers in new techniques, because they haven’t yet been conditioned to think in the older, waterfall-style ways of thinking.

“It’s harder to change attitude than it is to change a technology skill set,” he says. “So, we are cross-training and it’s working quite successfully, but we are seeing an accelerating effect by focusing on DevOps and agile techniques for our trainees.”

To satisfy this, there are seven key skills for businesses to consider:

1. Flexibility
2. Security skills
3. Collaboration
4. Scripting skills
5. Decision-making
6. Infrastructure knowledge
7. Soft skills

DevOps: an essential part of digital transformation?

Digital transformation is a wholesale reinvention of business — embracing digital, culturally and technologically.

“If you’re not reinventing your business processes, then you are not doing a transformation,” points out Cullum.

But, if businesses are reinventing business processes, then by definition they’re probably going to be overhauling large chunks of their IT estate, including the aforementioned legacy.

Why do we need DevOps? For the business and consumer

Businesses — especially large enterprises — must embrace DevOps to challenge the competition and meet their consumers’ digital experience demands. Read here

By embarking on this journey, sooner or later, these transformative businesses will be moving into a modern-style architecture with different components and different paces of different deliveries.

“In our case, we often talk about pace-layered deliveries,” says Cullum. “You’re going to put a lot more focus in your systems of differentiation and innovation, and they have to have rapid relatively robust change going in,” he says.

DevOps is the enabler of that.

If businesses aren’t doing DevOps — they might call it something else — or repeatable, automated deployment testing processes then they are not embracing change and able to make releases at the speed of change.

Why DevOps is important

DevOps, like digital, is an assumed norm now. It’s probably a little late to start thinking about it.

“If you aren’t already thinking about it or aren’t already doing it, you’re probably way behind the curve,” warns Cullum.

In digitally-resistant organisations it is likely that there are “guerrilla factions” that are trying DevOps. “In this case, you should probably go and look at what’s going on there and work out how you can industrialise that and scale it out,” he advises. “If you aren’t doing any of that, then you’re probably holding yourself back as a business.”

Some argue, however, it’s never too late to join the DevOps integration race.

The DevOps challenge: outdated IT estate architectures

The biggest DevOps challenge is that not all IT estate architectures are suitable for a DevOps approach… they are not modern. Read here

Business case study

Callaghan suggests that Netflix is a great example of making DevOps work for the business.

He says: “Netflix has used Apache Cassandra™ for its high availability, and to test for this they wrote a series of testing libraries called “Chaos Monkey.” For example, both “Chaos Kong” and “Chaos Gorilla” tests are used to decimate Netflix infrastructure to evaluate the impact on availability and function. As a result of the practice, Netflix is confident in their system and its reliability. DevOps software development practice enables Netflix to effectively speed up development and produce an always-on experience for their users.”

The DevOps engineer: fulfilling the software development life cycle

The DevOps engineer is becoming a more common presence in the enterprise. But, what exactly does the role entail and how can you become one? Read here


How to drive impact and change via DevOps — Stephen Magennis, managing director for Expleo Technology (UK technology), discusses how impact and change can be driven via DevOps.

How intelligent software delivery can accelerate digital experience success — Greg Adams, regional vice-president UK&I at Dynatrace, discusses how intelligent software delivery can accelerate digital experience success.

Mon, 01 Aug 2022 12:00:00 -0500 Nick Ismail en text/html https://www.information-age.com/how-devops-works-in-the-enterprise-123481877/
Killexams : Webex vs. Zoom: Which Is Best For Your Team?

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

As more organizations embrace remote working and learning, the need for reliable video conferencing solutions has skyrocketed. If you’re exploring virtual meeting platforms, you’ll find that Webex by Cisco and Zoom are among the most popular video conferencing services on the market today. But which is best? The answer depends on your specific needs.

We conducted an in-depth review of Webex vs. Zoom and compared video conferencing features, pricing, security, reliability and user experience. This review provides everything you need to make an informed decision for your team.

Webex vs. Zoom at a Glance



Paid plans range

From $15 to $25

per month per license

Paid plans range

From $15 to $25

per month per license

Pros & Cons

  • Excellent video and audio quality
  • Easy screen and document sharing
  • Strong reputation for security
  • Difficult to set up and navigate compared to other apps
  • Sluggish app launch speed
  • Limited integrations available



Paid plans range

From $14.99 to $19.99

per month per license

Paid plans range

From $14.99 to $19.99

per month per license

Pros & Cons

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Reliable and fast connectivity
  • Excellent video and audio quality
  • Security issues (such as meeting disruptions)
  • Breakout rooms somewhat difficult to navigate

How Webex and Zoom Stack Up

Both Webex and Zoom offer high-quality video and audio, easy meeting scheduling, user and participant authentication, waiting rooms and meeting recordings. Each platform also comes with desktop/file sharing, application sharing, interactive whiteboards, background manipulation, live group and private chat and the ability to assign user roles and permissions.

All Webex paid plans include 10 GB of cloud storage, while lower-tier Zoom plans offer only 1 GB. Webex offers participant polling on its free plan; Zoom does not. All Zoom plans come with touch-up filters for lighting and appearance; these features are not available through Webex.

Webex offers fewer integrations than Zoom. You’ll find a complete list of integrations on the Zoom website, but you’ll need to search by app name in the Webex Help Center to determine whether a specific app is supported.

Webex vs. Zoom Prices by Plan

Webex offers five plans. The Basic Plan and Meet Plan offer premium HD online video-based meetings, while the Call Plan offers a unique cloud-based phone number for each license and premium calling features. The Webex Meet + Call Plan offers both online video meetings and telephony services.

Prices for Webex plans range from $0 to $25 per month per license, with exception to the customizable cost of the Enterprise Plan. Other differences among the plans include participant capacity and meeting duration limits, which are explained in the chart below.

Zoom offers four plans that range from $0 to $19.99 per license per month. Key differences among the plans include price, meeting duration and participant capacity.

A key difference between Webex and Zoom is participant capacity limits on the platforms’ various plans. Zoom’s $14.99 Pro plan caps out at 100 participants, while Webex’s $15 Meet Plan permits up to 200 participants. If you want your online meetings to scale beyond 200 people, Zoom’s Business plan at $19.99 is a better value as it comes with built-in support for up to 300 participants.

With Zoom paid plans, you can expand participant capacity to up to 1,000 per meeting via Zoom’s Large Meetings add-on, which starts at $50 per month.

Ease of Setup and Use

The steps to setting up and using each video conferencing platform are similar, though user feedback overwhelmingly suggests that Zoom is consistently more user-friendly than Webex.

You don’t need a Zoom account to attend a meeting, but you will need to download the Zoom meeting application to your computer or mobile device. Zoom software updates are issued regularly, so it’s always best to check whether you have the latest version installed before attending a meeting. Using up-to-date software assures a more secure and stable video meeting experience.

You need to sign up for a Zoom account to set up a meeting. Register for a free Zoom account via email, Google, Facebook or single sign-on (SSO). Once your account is live, you can schedule meetings and invite others to your meetings. The process is straightforward, and Zoom’s meeting management dashboard is exceptionally user-friendly.

Webex application download and meeting set up is much like Zoom’s. To attend a meeting, you must download the Webex software onto your device. To host a meeting, you must register for a Webex account, which you can do for free. Webex takes a hit on user-friendliness due to somewhat clunky set-up instructions, lengthy registration and check-in times and a meeting interface that can confuse less tech-savvy users.

Related: Grasshopper vs Ringcentral vs Zoom


Video conferencing use has surged since the pandemic began. Virtual events are up 1000% since COVID-19, and virtual meetings have experienced similar growth.

Increasing user rates and systems that weren’t prepared to handle the surge led to Zoom’s widely publicized security issues. A string of meeting disruptions affected the platform in 2020, but Zoom has addressed its security shortcomings, and instances of security breaches are rarer now.

Zoom offers TLX encryption to establish communications, AES-256 encryption for real-time content and password-protected meetings. Meeting hosts can opt to have users stop in waiting rooms and then admit participants one by one after user identity and permission to enter has been verified. Hosts have complete control over screen sharing permissions. Zoom also provides HIPAA-compliant security with its Zoom for Healthcare solution.

Webex maintains a stellar reputation for video conferencing security. The platform offers locked personal room meetings, password-enforced meeting connections and encrypted cloud recordings. The Webex lobby feature allows the meeting host to control who can enter a meeting and when. Meeting hosts and admins can grant or revoke participant access to meetings at any time.


Webex offers customer support to its free users through its online Help Center. Paid plan subscribers can contact Webex customer service via chat or phone. Enterprise customers are assigned a dedicated Webex representative.

The Zoom Help Center is the only support offered for those on the free Zoom plan. Zoom Pro plan customers can submit support tickets or chat live online with a Zoom representative. Zoom Business and Enterprise plan customers can opt to receive support via phone.

Telephony Extensions

Both Webex and Zoom offer telephony extension plans. To access telephony services with Webex, you’ll need a Webex calling plan, which you can get with both the Call Plan and the Meet + Call Plan. Call waiting, call forwarding and up to six-way conference calls are included in these Webex plans. Unlimited local and domestic long distance is also offered, and international long distance is billed per minute.

Zoom Phone is the provider’s global cloud enterprise phone solution. Zoom’s service includes unlimited internal calling, three-way ad hoc conference calls, call recording, voice mail transcription and more. There is also an appliance program that can provide you with telephony hardware straight from the company. This telephony service is a separate offering from Zoom Meetings, and prices for plans range from $10 to $20 per month per license.

Bottom Line

Both Webex and Zoom offer feature-rich, stable video conferencing solutions. Overall, though, Zoom is the better platform in terms of total features and user-friendliness.

Zoom’s simplicity makes it a favorite across all types of video conference users. Since Webex holds a stronger reputation for system security, Webex is often a favorite for tech-savvy users and organizations where system security is paramount.

Find The Right Phone System For Your Business

Save by Comparing Phone System Prices

Frequently Asked Questions

What is video conferencing?

Video conferencing is a type of virtual, online meeting where two or more people talk through a video and audio call in real-time.

How can you make your video conferencing platform more secure?

There are several ways to enhance the security of whichever video conferencing platform you choose. These include creating unique meeting passwords and IDs for each meeting, allowing attendees into the meeting rather than everyone getting into the meeting at the same time, restricting who can provide out meeting invitations and limiting on-screen access to documents when screen sharing.

Mon, 01 Aug 2022 04:31:00 -0500 Janette Novak en-US text/html https://www.forbes.com/advisor/business/software/zoom-vs-webex/
Killexams : Cisco Schedules Conference Call for Q4 and Fiscal Year 2022 Financial Results

SAN JOSE, Calif., August 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Cisco has scheduled a conference call for Wednesday, August 17, 2022, at 1:30 PM (PT); 4:30 PM (ET) to announce its fourth quarter and fiscal year 2022 financial results for the period ending Saturday, July 30, 2022.

Cisco Logo (PRNewsfoto/Cisco)

Financial results will be released over PR Newswire via US National and European Financial distribution, after the close of the market on Wednesday, August 17, 2022.

Cisco's quarterly earnings press release will be posted at newsroom.cisco.com.

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

1:30 PM (PT); 4:30 PM (ET)

To Listen via Telephone:
212-519-0847 (for International Callers)

No RSVP is necessary

To Listen via the Internet:
We are pleased to offer a live and replay audio broadcast of the conference call with corresponding slides at https://investor.cisco.com.

A telephone playback of the Q4 and FY2022 conference call is scheduled to be available beginning at 4:00 PM (PT) on August 17, 2022, through 4:00 PM (PT) August 24, 2022.  The replay will be accessible by calling 866-517-3736 (International callers: 203-369-2047).  The call runs 24 hours/day, including weekends. 

An archived version of the webcast will be available on Cisco's Investor Relations website at https://investor.cisco.com.

About Cisco

Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in technology that powers the Internet. Cisco inspires new possibilities by reimagining your applications, securing your data, transforming your infrastructure, and empowering your teams for a global and inclusive future. Discover more on The Newsroom and follow us on Twitter.

Cisco and the Cisco logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Cisco and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. A listing of Cisco's trademarks can be found at www.cisco.com/go/trademarks. Third-party trademarks mentioned are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company.


View original content to download multimedia:https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/cisco-schedules-conference-call-for-q4-and-fiscal-year-2022-financial-results-301598200.html

SOURCE Cisco Systems, Inc.

Wed, 03 Aug 2022 08:31:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://finance.yahoo.com/news/cisco-schedules-conference-call-q4-203000601.html
Killexams : Best Enterprise Gear for the 802.11ac Wi-Fi Standard
  • Beamforming (typically transmit)
  • Multi-User Multiple Input Multiple Out (MU-MIMO), introduced with Wave 2
  • Multi-gigabit backhaul
  • Wireless intrusion protection
  • Antenna options

Another very important thing to look for that differentiates each vendor’s individual product lines is their support for spectrum analysis, noise reduction and channel management. What To Look For In 802.11ac Access Points

Let’s take a closer look at some of the features you’ll find in 802.11ac enterprise gear.


All of the WiFi vendors mentioned in the product comparison on page two support some form of beamforming. So what is beamforming? Well at a high level, Beamforming allows the transmitter and MIMO receiver to work together to achieve the best signal possible by using multiple antennas to transmit and receive signals. This is done in order to effectively increase the signal strength by attempting to prevent signals from cancelling each other out at the receiver. This is accomplished through a number of different technical methods, the most simple (relatively) being the alteration of the signal gain and phase. Bi-directional beamforming takes this idea and optimizes it by having both the access points (AP) and the client support beamforming, this way the signal is not only being optimized from the AP to the client, but also from the client to the AP. However, some major wireless vendors have yet to implement it.

As with everything in business, the real results that are provided by a given vendor’s solution can differ significantly from what they promise. Make sure to take the time to test multiple vendors’ products in the target environment to ensure the expected performance is achieved.

MU-MIMO (New In Wave 2)

One of the biggest positive changes that came with Wave 2 supported devices is in their support for Multi-User Multiple Input Multiple Out (MU-MIMO). While Wave 1 devices supported Single User MIMO (SU-MIMO), so have many 802.11n devices for some time. The big change is the support for multiple conversations between different wireless clients at the same time. With SU-MIMO, the AP has to communicate with one device at a time (for very short amounts of time). With MU-MIMO, the AP can now simultaneously communicate with multiple devices, which greatly increases the usability of the wireless network. 

Multi-Gigabit Backhaul

One of the common issues for existing wireless deployments is that APs have been typically deployed using Power over Ethernet (PoE) using a single copper cable for backhaul. With earlier wireless implementations this wasn’t a problem because the aggregate wireless throughput was always lower than the physical capabilities of that single cable. However, with the implementation of 802.11ac Wave 2 devices this is no longer true. There are a few different solutions for this including NBASE-T and MGBASE-T. Both offer solutions that allow existing cabling (copper cables that don’t support 10 Gigabit Ethernet) to stay where they are and now support rates of 2.5 or 5 Gbps, allowing companies to upgrade their wireless infrastructure without needing to upgrade their cabling infrastructure. 

Another option may exist for certain deployments where multiple cables exist for each AP. In this case, it may be possible for a link aggregation solution to work to combine the throughput of multiple links. In these situations look for products that support IEEE 802.3ad (LACP).

However, keep in mind that this is an issue that will only exist for specific environments (high density). Inspect your environment to make sure that this is truly a problem before using it as a selection criteria.

Wireless Intrusion Protection

As with every other piece of networking equipment, security is very important. Most vendors support some type of wireless intrusion protection, typically including detection of rogue access points and clients. While this may be an add-on to some vendor’s product lines, it should be a consideration in your 802.11ac product selection. Antenna Options

In the world of wireless, one thing that can never be overlooked is the selection of available antennas for a specific product. Since the environment that a wireless network must work within is almost always different, the ability to adapt a solution to use multiple types of antennas to achieve good performance is vital.

Spectrum Analysis, Noise Reduction And Channel Management

Anyone who has ever implemented a wireless network is familiar with what noise can do to the availability and capability of a wireless network (is the microwave running?). Most of the vendors have their own features that are intended to reduce both the noise created by their solutions and external noise that affects their solutions. This is done through a combination of both active and passive noise environment detection. Based on the results from this added information, the signal can be modified to best meet the requirements of a specific environment. Most of the 802.11ac solutions we list on page two support the ability to dynamically change the channel being used by each radio depending on this learned information. Some even offer the ability for a dual band radio to change from 2.4 to 5 or vice versa depending on the wireless demand and the current environmental conditions.

The next two steps coming to the wireless evolution are: the full implementation of the 802.11ac standard (also referenced in some places as Wave 3) and the eventual next standard 802.11ax.

802.11ac Full Implementation (Wave 3)

802.11ac Wave 3 is not the official name, but it is a familiar moniker that is used to talk about the full implementation of the 802.11ac standard. The implementation of Wave 2 comes up short against the specifications of the full implementation. The full implementation offers support for a maximum physical rate of around 6.9 Gbps (with a single radio) using 160 Mhz channels (or 80-80 Mhz non-contiguous channels), 256 QAM and 8 spacial streams.

Note: a physical line rate of 6.9 Gbps works out to about 4.5 Gbps of MAC throughput


The next version of the 802.11 standard is going to be 802.11ax. The standard is now in the process of being developed as this article is being written. Some of the things to look for are 10 Gbps wireless speeds, standard support for 1024 QAM (which is already supported in some consumer devices) and possibly (multi-user) multiple input, multiple output-orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (MIMO-OFDM). What else is in store for 802.11ax? We’ll keep an eye out for it and will update this article as more information is made available. Now let’s take a closer look at some of the top 802.11ac access points and how they compare.

Best 802.11ac Access Points Available Today

Since HPE acquired Aruba Networks, there are currently three manufacturers that lead the enterprise wireless LAN space: Cisco, Aruba/HPE, Extreme Networks and Ruckus. However, Cisco is well ahead of the others, maintaining around 45 percent of the total wireless LAN market share. The next sections will go over the currently available 802.11ac access points made by Cisco, Aruba/HPE, Extreme Networks and Ruckus and what they have to offer.

Aruba Networks/HPE 802.11ac Access Points

Aruba currently offers eight 802.11ac series access points. Aruba’s latest 802.11ac Wave 2 access points include the 310, 320 and 330 series devices. Aruba also offers a number of Wave 1 APs including the 200, 210, 220, 228 and 270 series devices.

Avaya 802.11ac Access Points

Avaya currently offers seven 802.11ac series access points. The company only offers one Wave 2 APs (9144), but seven Wave 1.

Cisco 802.11ac Access Points

Cisco currently offers nine Aironet product series that support IEEE 802.11ac, which offer built-in support via internal or external antennas, depending on the specific model. The Aironet 1810w, 1810OEAP, 1830, 1850, 2800 and 3800 are Wave 2 products. The Aironet 1700, 2700 and 3700 are Wave 1 products.

Extreme Networks 802.11ac Access Points

At this time Extreme Networks offers five 802.11ac access points for indoor and outdoor implementations. The AP3965 and AP3935 series APs are Wave 2 products while the AP3865, AP3825 and AP 3805 series are Wave 1 products.  Ruckus Wireless 802.11ac Access Points

Ruckus Wireless has four 802.11ac Wave 1 offerings including the R310, R500, R600 and R700 series of devices and a single Wave 2 offering, the R710.

How To Choose The Best 802.11ac Access Point

As you can see, there are a number of different options available and the selection of the best solution will really depend on the specific environment and the requirements of the situation. If you’re considering purchasing 802.11ac gear, take a look at the available options we listed in this article and compile that with the requirements of the intended environment. Then choose a few products that fill those requirements the best and test the access points in the real environment to ensure their performance before purchasing. In-house testing will not only help you ensure that you’ll get the best performance from your WiFi gear, it might even provide you some leverage on the deal when you’re ready to make your final decision.

Tue, 28 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.business.com/articles/80211-ac-access-points/
Killexams : Review: Cisco Meraki Z3 Grants Teleworking Wishes

The Cisco Meraki Z3 teleworker gateway is an ideal solution for organizations looking to manage remote worker security with confidence and ease. Higher education institutions are increasingly challenged to deliver secure IT services to faculty, staff and students who may need to be off campus due to weather conditions, health problems or work assignments that require travel.

That’s where the Z3, an enterprise-class firewall and VPN gateway, can become a real ace in the hole for accommodating and empowering teleworkers without compromising organizational security.

Network administrators can control the SSIDs that are broadcast by the device and can configure those SSIDs to integrate with institutional authentication servers such as LDAP, Active Directory or RADIUS. For IT shops that use single sign-on, web SSO is supported via SAML, and SSIDs can be configured to require two-factor authentication. A customizable splash page can be created to ask users to acknowledge an acceptable use policy prior to connecting.

Cisco Meraki Z3 Offers Simple Deployment Paired with Effective Security Policy Management

When the Z3 is coupled with the Meraki Cloud, organizations gain impressive capabilities for automated deployment at large scale. The Meraki Cloud allows network administrators to register devices by serial number prior to deployment. Larger deployments allow network administrators to specify an order number, which will add all of the devices automatically on that order. Once the device is registered to the Meraki Cloud, it downloads the configuration and policies specified by the network administrator. This ensures consistent configuration and security policy while greatly reducing the support burden for teleworkers to connect.

The Z3 and Meraki Cloud also ensure the comprehensive application of security policy on network traffic. The AutoVPN feature greatly simplifies configuration of site-to-site VPN tunnels. Layer 7 packet inspection and traffic shaping allow network administrators to apply quality of service policies to prioritize Voice over IP or remote desktop traffic over other traffic. Network administrators can require client VPN connections to the Z3 — in effect, creating a small branch office.

Network administrators can specify wireless LAN settings such as channel selection, radio power and channel width, but can also leave these settings to auto-tune based on the teleworker’s environment. Engineers can also remotely view channel utilization and contention.

Support and Setup for Cisco Meraki Z3

Setting up the Z3 is simple even for nontechnical teleworkers, though organizations may want to supplement the instructions provided in the product packaging. The device can be configured with a static IP via connection to a LAN port, or with DHCP via the WAN uplink port. In the latter configuration, the teleworker simply connects the WAN port to the router or gateway with the included cable, and then powers on the device.

When the device begins to broadcast a Meraki Setup SSID, the teleworker connects a client device to this SSID and completes the setup via the Meraki Dashboard. This allows individual device configuration when the device is deployed in an unmanaged environment.

Supporting remote teleworkers presents a unique set of challenges, and the Z3 and Meraki Cloud provide some specific tools to make it easier. For example, remote packet capture allows a network administrator to capture traffic from the device, and network administrators can send NetFlow data from the device to a NetFlow collector or network management suite. The Z3 can send alerts via email or be integrated with a log aggregator or security information and event management solution via webhooks. Most important, a suite of troubleshooting tools — including remote ping, traceroute (MTR), throughput test, and Domain Name System and Address Resolution Protocol table inspection — is available to help network engineers troubleshoot remotely.

Form Factor for the Cisco Meraki Z3

The Z3 is a small form factor device (6.83x4.41x1.04 inches) that supports up to 5 client devices. It includes a 100-megabit-per-second stateful firewall and is rated for 50Mpbs VPN throughput. Wireless capabilities include a full dual-band 802.11ac Wave 2 array with MU-MIMO and a maximum wireless data rate of 1.3Gbps. The device includes four internal dipole antennas and can support up to four SSIDs.

Wired connectivity is provided by four 1-gigabit-per-second LAN ports, one of which provides 802.3af Power over Ethernet. Wired uplink is provided via a 1Gbps WAN port, and a USB 2.0 port provides the interface for a backup cellular modem.

A Welcome Solution for Home Work

The Meraki Z3 offers organizations an effective platform for providing secure and scalable access to an increasingly remote workforce in higher education. The feature set and deployment processes are well thought out and address the challenges of deploying, maintaining and supporting the institutional network to meet most teleworkers’ needs. When coupled with the Meraki Cloud, the Z3 is a great choice to ‘send home’ with your remote workers.

Sun, 26 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 Tom Jordan en text/html https://edtechmagazine.com/higher/higher/k12/k12/article/2020/03/review-cisco-meraki-z3-grants-teleworking-wishes
Killexams : Think Like a Startup, Scale Like an Enterprise: Balancing the Best of Both Worlds

When you think of a typical startup, what words come to mind? “Progressive and trendy?” “Lean and innovative?” “Agile and engaged?”

Now, think of a classic Fortune 500 enterprise. Odds are, a large corporation that’s been around for decades invokes a different set of notions – perhaps “bureaucratic,” “too political,” “hierarchical,” “legacy” and perhaps a bit “outmoded” ring true.

Despite the intrinsic differences between startups and enterprises, one thing is certain: The pace of change in today’s market is so fast and volatile that companies of all sizes risk their very survival unless they become more disruptive and more innovative. In fact, both startups and enterprises are at risk, as 90 percent of startups fail, and 40 percent of Fortune 500 companies may cease to exist in 10 years. 

While there’s no silver bullet solution to success, large organizations can more readily adapt to the new business climate by developing a culture of open collaboration, and most importantly, innovation – that is, hyper co-innovation. 

For startups, innovation is treated as a team sport, where a diverse set of players from all departments and roles inside and outside the company are as important as the ideas they generate. This is a stark contrast to a traditional enterprise’s approach, where innovation is often treated as a more rigid, defined process. But by changing their mindset and approach, even large enterprises can unleash the innovative nature that is within their employees and become more disruptive. Here’s how to think like a startup, but scale like an enterprise – and balance the best of both worlds. 

Thinking like a startup

Innovation can come from anywhere, anytime. Employees in all job functions and at all levels should be encouraged to come up with innovative ideas and given the support needed to implement them.

At Cisco, we’ve personally experienced the success that comes from this mindset through our Innovate Everywhere Challenge, a companywide, cross-functional innovation competition that mirrors real-life startup practices. Employees from all job roles and levels are encouraged to form teams and pitch their innovative ideas for everything from business process improvements to new digital solutions. Teams with the best ideas are given funding, mentorship and time off from their regular job functions to make their ideas a reality. 

One of the most successful projects to arise from the challenge was LifeChanger, which helps people with disabilities work remotely by leveraging voice, video and collaboration technologies. To date, more than 100 people with disabilities have gained access to meaningful employment through LifeChanger, and several other organizations are looking to implement the solution as well. 

To begin thinking more like a startup, leaders should first emphasize cross-functional teams, think outside of functions and break down business-unit silos. This will ensure that you are tapping into the best and brightest ideas. We know from experience and research that the most valuable digital solutions come from teams with different backgrounds and perspectives.

Second, enable transparent digital communication amongst teams and stakeholders. This could involve setting up an online forum, establishing a mentor network, or disseminating employee surveys and sharing the feedback.

Leaders must also be flexible. Encourage rapid prototyping for solutions – validate concepts with potential customers early on, pivot fast and take risks. And when something does not work, empower teams to learn from failures and move on to the next idea.

Lastly, understand that innovation is in everything: innovation should be integral to the way a company conducts day-to-day business, not just an approach to developing new products. Therefore, focus on people – not just technology – when incubating new ideas. 

Scaling like an enterprise

On the other side of the coin, large enterprises also embody a core set of strengths, resources and partnerships that can accelerate innovation, such as their ability to quickly scale and get products to market.

Most successful enterprises actively build their ecosystems, leveraging vertical, horizontal and local partners to ensure the scalability, mass customization and reach of their solutions. They also know how to set their sights on clearly defined, broader goals, understanding that innovation is about more than delivering a cool new app or futuristic device.

Enterprises focus on the business outcomes and value at stake, rather than taking a scattered approach driven by passions that can be fleeting or change over time. Plus, they have established customers, partners and marketing channels to broaden exposure and credibility of innovative ideas.

Use these attributes and resources to your advantage as you begin to weave the startup mindset into your culture. 

Bringing both worlds together

As you take the best characteristics from both successful startups and enterprises, the next step is to ignite a startup culture by engaging and challenging employees to innovate. Here’s how:

1. Open innovation to everyone

Innovation programs must be extended to all employees, across departments, levels and roles. From there, encourage inclusion and diversity of perspectives, and empower employees to make decisions and tap into their inner entrepreneur.

2. Recreate a startup-like environment

As employees innovate, support their ideas with mentor networks, angel investors and other resources that an real startup would use. This will help lead your internal innovators through the four phases of a lean startup: ideation, validation, funding and development.

3. Gamify

Use not only gamification to make innovation fun, but also introduce rewards (monetary, time off, etc.) as incentives. Additionally, look for opportunities to secure publicity for the innovative ideas or solutions your employees create. Highlighting their accomplishments is extremely rewarding for them, spurs further engagement and innovation from other employees, and can bolster your company’s brand reputation.

4. Appoint a champion

Designate an internal champion to lead your innovation initiatives and attain buy-in from the higher-ups, all the way to the C-Suite. Most importantly, your champion can help you discover existing, untapped talent by engaging as many employees as possible and sharing what your programs have to offer.

5. Customize for each culture

One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to innovation, especially for global companies. Every stakeholder in the mix (including employees) has a different set of personalities, priorities and passions. And there will always be polarities of tension between established and startup practices in a big company. Therefore, customize and balance your program’s approach to stimulating employee innovation, blending both the startup and large enterprise mindsets. As innovation expert and author, Michael Docherty, advises: “Embrace the power of AND,” referring to the required blend of more than one approach to innovation. 

By combining the best attributes of a startup culture with the scalability of an enterprise, competing in an age of disruption is a far less daunting. The goal is to transform your organization and its culture by empowering and inspiring employees – regardless of role, rank, or region – to innovate. Then, providing a wealth of resources, training and incentives, nurture their innovation to bring big ideas to market. With employees innovating anytime, anywhere, you’ll better your entire organization – and change the world while you’re at it. 

Tue, 28 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.business.com/articles/startup-mindset-enterprise-scaling-business-growth/
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