Guest Speakers

From Next-Generation Data Center

One of the highlights of the Building Next-Generation Data Center course are the guest speakers: industry experts talking about emerging technologies, use cases, or their deployment and operational experiences.

The Autumn 2016 and Spring 2017 courses include presentations from these guest speakers:

Collecting the Requirements

Scott Lowe will open the Spring 2017 course talking about the impact of open-source on data center design and data center infrastructure. He's presentation will touch on subjects ranging from Linux & Linux networking to OpenStack and Docker to help course attendees can help understand where they fit (if at all) and how they would impact other aspects of data center design.

More about Scott Lowe

Previous guest speakers

Marjan Bradeško (NIL Data Communications) explained how to create a great presentation in Autumn 2016 course. In his own words:

You want to present. A great idea, a technical solution you are enthusiastic about, maybe just a regular technical update. Especially in technology world we rely on presentations with "slides" to convey our messages.
As a presenter you definitely want to stay in focus of your public. So the presentation has to complement you - add the value to your explanations, increase your overall presence and provide the necessary help to you. You will learn how to keep your presentation attractive and informative yet clean enough that the audience will be able to recognize the message - even without you. How to make sure people see the content no matter the size of the screen or the distance from the projection. How many "slides" to create for the allotted time slot? How to let your audience know what to expect? How to summarize the key points? How to deal with complex drawings? Or change boring bullets into something to remember! Is structured presentation mandatory or does it hinder your creativity?

Marjan plans to cover all these questions and I'm positive you'll feel encouraged to go out and impress your customers or coworkers with a great presentation.

More about Marjan Bradeško

Automation and Orchestration

Thomas Wacker (UBS AG) will describe how UBS embraces automation for the currently ongoing data center network rebuild. He will start with prerequisites and key objectives, lay out the architecture, showcase the toolchain in use today, and explain the phases of build, test, documentation and ongoing operations.

In the conclusion, he’ll go through the benefits of UBS approach, the next immediate goals, and how automation will keep changing the networking industry.

More about Thomas Wacker

Previous guest speakers

Elisa Jasinska (Bigwave IT) did a great overview approaching your automation and orchestration strategy in a datacenter environment in Autumn 2016 session. She described the separation of provisioning tasks from orchestration or ongoing management, and provided examples and tool to cope with each of them.

More about Elisa Jasinska

Design Compute and Storage Infrastructure

Stephen Foskett will give you essential background on the emerging trend of containerization of enterprise applications, answering questions like "what are containers?" and "how will they affect enterprise IT?" Stephen will address both the technical and architectural questions, discussing which applications will be containerized, the benefits and costs, and what it means for IT operations.

More about Stephen

Previous guest speakers

In autumn 2016 session Howard Marks ( described what Software-Defined Storage is, where it makes sense to use it, and how it impacts the networking requirements and data center infrastructure design.

More about Howard Marks

Design the Network Services and Infrastructure

As Internet IPv6 adoption is becoming more real there are practical considerations for many businesses to consider I invited Ed Horley to give you some guidelines and describe lessons learned while deploying IPv6 within data centers, and what you need to consider before you start your IPv6 journey. He will also address these questions:

  • Should IPv6 (dual-stack) in the data center be something to implement?
  • Can IPv6 data center be an advantage for certain services, applications and workloads?
  • Are there specific things to look out for in adopting IPv6 in the data center?
  • What training, skills and resources do I need to make it actually happen?

More about Ed Horley

Previous guest speakers

In autumn 2016 course, Russ White (LinkedIn) described the principles of disaggregation and white box switching data center solutions, the problem space and various open-source solutions, including their positive and negative attributes.

  • Disaggregation versus white box versus SDN -- what is the difference
  • The components of a fabric; switches, optics, network operating system, control plane
  • Building the fabric: Clos designs, oversubscription, managing complexity
  • Overlay options: VXLAN and EVPN
  • Other topics: Service chaining and security

More about Russ White

High-Availability Concerns

Let's assume you want to increase the availability of your services by moving parts of them into the cloud or doing some sort of active/standby deployment between your DC and the cloud. Now you have to deal with your (C)ISO and his/her usual concerns as well as the variety of articles on tech sites stating that "security is the biggest challenge of cloud adoption". Matthias Luft (ERNW Research) will break those security concerns into categories (such as isolation failures, cloud outages, or compliance issues), look at incidents and vulnerabilities from the past, and what we can do about those in our cloud strategy.

More about Matthias

Previous guest speakers

In September 2016 session Ethan Banks ( talked about real-life aspects of active/active data center designs and lessons he’s learned while operating them. The speaker in the April 2017 session will be announced shortly.

More about Ethan

Putting It All Together

The Spring 2017 course will conclude with an interactive panel discussion with Andrew Lerner and Simon Richard from Gartner. We plan to discuss these topics:

  • Current State of the Enterprise Networking
  • What happened to SDN (and brite-boxes)
  • Premium people versus premium products
  • Network Incrementalism and other worst practices
  • Rethinking Network Downtime
  • The WAN is Cool again (SD-WAN, vCPE)
  • Emerging Topics: Container Networking and Intent-based Networking

More about Andrew Lerner

More about Simon Richard

Previous guest speakers

Mitja Robas (NIL Data Communications) implemented a production VMware NSX environment using overlay virtual networks and virtual appliances on top of Cisco UCS and Nexus 9000 infrastructure. In the Autumn 2016 course he described lessons learned, the obstacles he met, and the tools and components he used on that journey.

More about Mitja Robas