April 19, 2015

My Etherealmind

Basics: What Is a Network Service ?

This article provide a practical and workable definition of "What Is a Network Service ?"

The post Basics: What Is a Network Service ? appeared first on EtherealMind.

by Greg Ferro at April 19, 2015 12:58 PM

April 17, 2015


SD-WAN’s Value Prop Conundrum

My interpretation of the SD-WAN value prop can be boiled down to cost savings, simplified operations, and improved application performance over inconsistently performing WAN links. Here's the conundrum. An engineer might instinctively recoil at this sort of value proposition.

by Ethan Banks at April 17, 2015 03:34 PM

My Etherealmind

Is the Cisco Nexus 9000 is a Whitebrand strategy ?

I was reviewing the non-ACI Nexus 9000 products this week and started thinking that the Nexus 9000 will become Cisco's response to whitebox disruption.

The post Is the Cisco Nexus 9000 is a Whitebrand strategy ? appeared first on EtherealMind.

by Greg Ferro at April 17, 2015 07:45 AM

XKCD Comics

April 15, 2015

My Etherealmind

AWS Summit London – Come For The IaaS, Stay For the PaaS

I attended the AWS Summit in London yesterday. Here are some observations in no particular order. Come for the IaaS, Stay for the PaaS. AWS made a strong case about their portfolio of software services such as AWS Lambda, Cloudformation, KMS and Cloudtrail. Its no longer just compute, storage and networking its all about the […]

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by Greg Ferro at April 15, 2015 02:53 PM

The Networking Nerd

Going Out With Style


Watching the HP public cloud discussion has been an interesting lesson in technology and how it is supported and marketed. HP isn’t the first company to publish a bold statement ending support for a specific technology or product line only to go back and rescind it a few days later. Some think that a problem like that shows that a company has some inner turmoil with regards to product strategy. More often than not, the real issue doesn’t lie with the company. It’s the customers fault.

No Lemonade From Lemons

It’s no secret that products have a lifespan. No matter how popular something might be with customers there is always a date when it must come to an end. This could be for a number of reasons. Technology marches on each and every day. Software may not run on newer hardware. Drivers may not be able to be written for new devices. CPUs grow more powerful and require new functions to unlock their potential.

Customers hate the idea of obsolescence. If you tell them the thing they just bought will be out-of-date in six years they will sneer at you. No matter how fresh the technology might be, the idea of it going away in the future unnerves customers. Sometimes it’s because the customers have been burned on technology purchases in the past. For every VHS and Blu-Ray player sold, someone was just as happy to buy a Betamax or HD-DVD unit that is now collecting dust.

That hatred of obsolescence sometimes keeps things running well past their expiration date. The most obivous example in recent history is Microsoft being forced to support Windows XP. Prior to Windows XP, Microsoft supported consumer releases of Windows for about five years. WIndows 95 was released in 1995 and support ended in 2001. Windows 98 reached EOL around the same time. Windows 2000 enjoyed ten years of support thanks to a shared codebase with popular server operating systems. Windows XP should have reached end-of-life shortly after the release of Windows Vista. Instead, the low adoption rate of Vista pushed system OEMs to keep installing Windows XP on their offerings. Even Windows 7 failed to move the needle significantly for some consumers to get off of XP. It finally took Microsoft dropping the hammer and setting a final end of extended support date in 2014 to get customers to migrate away from Windows XP. Even then, some customers were asking for an extension to the thirteen-year support date.

Microsoft kept supporting an OS three generations old because customers didn’t want to feel like XP had finally given up the ghost. Even though drivers couldn’t be written and security holes couldn’t be patched, consumers still wanted to believe that they could run XP forever. Even if you bought one of the last available copies of Windows XP when you purchased your system, you still got as much support for your OS as Microsoft gave Windows 95/98. Never mind that the programmers had moved on to other projects or had squeezed every last ounce of capability from the software. Consumers just didn’t want to feel like they’d been stuck with a lemon more than a decade after it had been created.

The Lesson of the Lifecycle

How does this apply to situations today? Companies have to make customers understand why things are being replaced. A simple annoucement (or worse, a hint of an unofficial annoucement from a third party source) isn’t enough any more. Customers may not like hearing their their favorite firewall or cloud platform is going away, but if you tell them the reasons behind the decision they will be more accepting.

Telling your customers that you are moving away from a public cloud platform to embrace hybrid clouds or to partner with another company doing a better job or offering more options is the way to go. Burying the annoucement in a conversation with a journalist and then backtracking later isn’t the right method. Customers want to know why. Vendors should have faith that customers are smart enough to understand strategy. Sure, there’s always the chance that customers will push back like they did with Windows XP. But there’s just as much chance they’ll embrace the new direction.

Tom’s Take

I’m one of those consumers that hates obsolescence. Considering that I’ve got a Cius and a Flip it should be apparent that I don’t bet on the right horse every time. But I also understand the reasons why those devices are no longer supported. I choose to use Windows 7 on my desktop for my own reasons. I know why it has been put out to pasture. I’m not going to demand Microsoft devote time and energy to a tired platform when Windows 10 needs to be finished.

In the enterprise technology arena, I want companies to be honest and direct when the time comes to retire products. Don’t hem and haw about shifting landscapes and concise technology roadmaps. Tell the world that things didn’t work out like you wanted and give us the way you’re going to fix it next time.

by networkingnerd at April 15, 2015 01:20 PM

Networking Now (Juniper Blog)

April 2015 Microsoft Patch Tuesday Summary

Welcome to the April edition of Microsoft Patch Tuesday Summary. In this edition there are 11 updates; 4 are marked "Critical" and 7 are rated "Important".  A total of 26 CVE's (Common Vulnerability and Exposure) were fixed over 11 bulletins this month. One of the Critical update MS15-033 addresses publicly disclosed Microsoft Office vulnerability (CVE-2014-6352) which is currently being exploited in the wild.

by prashantk at April 15, 2015 06:26 AM

XKCD Comics

April 14, 2015

Peter's CCIE Musings and Rants

CCIE Wireless updated

Blink and you will have missed it, but the CCIE Wireless has been updated to version 3.0!

Once some materials are ready, I will probably start studying for it, not sure if I'll use it to actually pass a lab but just so I know the technology. :)


by peter_revill (noreply@blogger.com) at April 14, 2015 04:14 PM

April 13, 2015

Internetwork Expert Blog

New CCIE SPv4, CCIE RSv5 & Multicast Classes This Week

This week I will be running the following free online classes:

*Free for AAP Members

INE will also be offering the following free upcoming online classes:

  • CCNA R&S Overview and Preparation – Tues April 21st @ 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC)
  • CCNP R&S Overview and Preparation – Thurs April 23rd @ 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC)
  • CCNP R&S TSHOOT Overview and Preparation – Thurs April 30th @ 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC)

More information on these classes can be found here.

CCIE Service Provider v4 Kickoff

This class marks the kickoff of INE’s CCIE SPv4 product line for the New CCIE Service Provider Version 4 Blueprint, which goes live May 22nd 2015!  In this class we’ll cover the v3 to v4 changes, including exam format changes and topic adds and removes, recommended readings and resources, INE’s new CCIE SPv4 hardware specification and CCIE SPv4 Workbook, and the schedule for INE’s upcoming CCIE Service Provider Version 4 Advanced Technologies Class.  Class runs tomorrow, Tuesday April 14th at 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC), and is free to attend.  Simply sign up for an INE Members account or visit this direct link for the class.

CCIE Routing & Switching v5 Overview and Preparation

This class is an update for our previous How to pass the CCIE R&S with INE’s 4.0 Training Program write-up. This session covers in detail the recommended process of preparing for, and ultimately passing, the CCIE R&Sv5 Lab Exam. Class topics include how to develop a study plan, recommended readings and resources, how to get the most out of INE’s CCIE RSv5 Workbook & Advanced Technologies Class (ATC), an overview of our new upcoming CCIE Routing & Switching Lab Cram Session, and final strategy for the actual day of the Lab Exam. Class runs Thurs April 16th at 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC), and is free to attend.  Simply sign up for an INE Members account or visit this direct link for the class.

Intro to IPv4 & IPv6 Multicast

This class is for engineers looking to get their feet wet in learning why and how to implement IP Multicast Routing for both IPv4 and IPv6 based networks. This one-day class will focus on IPv4 & IPv6 Multicast practical use cases, how Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM), IPv4 Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP), & IPv6 Multicast Listener Discovery (MLD) work from a theory point of view, and implementation examples of configuring and verifying multicast routing operations on Cisco IOS based platforms. This class will also benefit candidates preparing for the CCIE RSv5 or CCIE SPv4 certifications. Class runs Friday April 17th at 09:00 PDT (16:00 UTC), and is free to attend for All Access Pass members. More information on All Access Pass subscriptions and benefits can be found here. AAP members will find the link to this class on Friday via their INE Members account, or via this direct link for the class.

I hope to see you all in class this week!

by Brian McGahan, CCIE #8593, CCDE #2013::13 at April 13, 2015 08:26 PM

XKCD Comics

April 12, 2015

Peter's CCIE Musings and Rants

Video Voicemail greetings in Unity Connection

Hi Guys!

In my last blog post we took a look at Cisco MediaSense, a quick method of getting some very rudimentary call recording (This isn't what it's intended for, since it has very little indexing capabilities, it's really meant as central storage for recording, but in a pinch it will work)

For me, the motivation of setting up Cisco MediaSense was to get Video Voicemail greetings going in Unity Connection, according to a recent Cisco Champions podcast on unity connection this is just step one towards full video messages in unity!

OK, Let's get to configuring

First, like any recipe, best to list out the ingredients first:

  • You will need a 10.5.X chain of Unity Connection (I am running Version
  • You will need Cisco mediasense installed and configured as per my blog post
  • Communications Manager 10.5 is kind of important too :p
  • You will need some sort of client that can do Video, I used Cisco Jabber but I am sure a 8945 or another appropriately configured Video Device will do the job.
  • This blog post assumes you already have your integration between Unity Connection and  Communications Manager working correctly, According to the design guide this must use SIP (To be honest, you should be using SIP integration to Unity Connection anyway)

There are some more specific requirements around latency between MediaSense and Unity Connection, your region configuration and  some vCPU settings (it claims you need 7 vCPU's, I personally didn't need to give my MediaSense server anywhere near this many, but it's something to check if your having issues)

 First, since we are probably already logged into CUCM, we need to create a user that Unity can use to talk to Mediasense, this is done by creating an end user under the end user page. You don't have to worry too much about the permissions, Standard CCM End User should be more than enough permission.

Once you have created this user, login to MediaSense and assign this user as a mediasense API user:

OK, that should be the sum of all our mediasense configuration, what a relief! There is something in the design guide that talks about creating a blanking file to stop the video "freezing" on certain clients, to be honest I didn't have this issue so I skipped this step but if you are having problems with the video freezing at the start of the call or the end of the call check out the design guide for instructions on how to resolve this issue.

Let's login to Unity Connection and get this setup.

The first step in unity connection is to make sure your Class of Service for your intended video users is set to allow video, scroll down until you see "Enable Video" and ensure you check the appropriate boxes, click save and make sure this applied to the users you want to have Video Voicemail.

Next, let's create the video service, scroll down on the left hand pane to Video -> Video Services

Simply give the service a display name, the IP address, and the user we configured as a mediasense API user previously, that's it!  I personally also checked the "Allow Self Signed Certificate for Video Server" because I don't have a proper PKI infrastructure configured, in production you should get into the habit of doing your certificates properly, see my blog post on PKI with CUCM.

Once you have saved this configuration, you will be reminded to restart the Unity Connection Conversation Manager as well as upload the certificate from the MediaSense server to the tomcat trust store on Unity Connection, I am not entirely sure if the "Allow Self-Signed Certificate for Video Server" checkbox makes this unnecessary, but I chose to upload the cert to the store anyway, so let's go through how to do that.

First, go to your Media Sense server and display the certificate, in Firefox this is done by clicking the Padlock icon next to the URL:

This wil display the security page, Click on View Certificate, then click on the details tab and click export. Save this somewhere on your PC.

Next, in unity connection, in the right hand drop down panel, select "Cisco Unified OS administration" login and then select Security -> Certificate Management

Next, click "Upload Certificate/Certificate Chain" and navigate to the file you exported previously, the purpose for the certificate should be tomcat-trust:

Once this is done, go ahead and restart the Unity Conversation Manager (I personally reset my entire unity connection cluster at this point, since it's non production/lab so I thought, why not?)

OK. Now we should be able to press the test button on the video service and make sure everything is OK. Go back to unity connection administration, select your video service you created previously and click "Test"

Hopefully your output looks something like the above!

OK, Next we have to make one more change to our user to enable him for video services, you could do this using bulk edit for a bunch of users, OR you could put it into the voicemail template so as you create users this setting will be automatically selected.

Go to your user in Unity Connection and Select Edit -> Video Services Account, then click add to assign this video service to this user.

OK! Thank goodness you should now be done and dusted. Let's test it!

Ring your voicemail number using jabber, When you first ring the number your video will show as disabled, or that the other end is not sending video:

 Don't worry! This is normal, the video will only enable as your recording your greeting, (SIP will send an updated SDP message).

Once you get to the part in Unity Connection of setting up your greeting you will find that the session changes to support video. Obviously don't forget you will need a webcam if your using jabber so make sure that is working to help avoid troubleshooting an issue that doesn't exist ;).

I hope this helps someone out there!

by peter_revill (noreply@blogger.com) at April 12, 2015 02:22 PM

April 10, 2015

XKCD Comics

April 09, 2015

Networking Now (Juniper Blog)

The SRX makes tunnel control better and easier

Juniper SRX Makes Tunnel Control BetterAre you doing everything you can to control unauthorized traffic entering and leaving your network?

by bshelton at April 09, 2015 10:13 PM

My Etherealmind

Response: Your Software Needs Hardware to Deliver

The hardware makes the software possible but disappears quickly from view.

The post Response: Your Software Needs Hardware to Deliver appeared first on EtherealMind.

by Greg Ferro at April 09, 2015 09:12 AM