Arkin Net Comes Out of Stealth Mode, Tells SDN Network Visibility Story

By Paula Bernier November 14, 2014

We’re hearing a lot about networking visibility and software-defined networking lately. Arkin Net is a startup, which recently came out of stealth mode that checks both boxes.

The company is backed by and Nutanix, having recently closed $140 million in funding. And it expects to launch its first product in the next few months, says Shiv Agarwal.

Arkin Net describes itself as an innovator in data center operations. The company has been busy building a multivendor SDN operations platform that offers 360-degree visibility across virtual and physical layer. It offers Google-like user interfaces and Google-like ease of simplicity. This solution is in betas with several large enterprise companies, Agarwal says.

Among the other companies talking about network visibility as it relates to SDN are Big Switch, Brocade, EXFO, Gigamon, VMware, and VSS Monitoring.

Big Switch’s Unified Physical + Virtual (P+V) Cloud Switching Fabric leverages a cloud fabric with both physical and virtual components that Big Switch manages end to end. The company says this enables service providers to implement and manage networks and policy across both physical and virtual elements using a single controller that acts as a single pane of glass.

Brocade and VMware earlier this month announced a collaboration to enable interoperability between Brocade’s Ethernet and Fibre Channel fabrics and VMware’s vRealize Operations 6.0 in an effort to help enterprises to automate and enjoy better performance in their data centers. Two key components of the solution include Brocade IP Management Pack for VMware vRealize Operations and vRealize Log Insight, which are available for download starting next month from the VMware Solutions Exchange. These tools provide end-to-end visibility across physical and virtual networks. Brocade’s VDX Ethernet fabric switches also can bring diagnostics data to the table for faster network problem identification and resolution.

To ensure service providers have visibility into network and service quality even as they embrace SDN and virtualization, EXPO Inc. in July introduced the Infrastructure Performance Suite to its BrixNGN portfolio. That allows facilities-based service providers to correlate service-level key performance indicators with infrastructure metrics such as CPU, flow performance, memory and interface utilization, and port speed. The solution also supports control and provisioning of select network elements from Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, RAD, and other suppliers.

Gigamon also continues to move forward with its work related to visibility. In August, it announced its work related to VMware NSX and software-defined data centers. Hatem Naguib, vice president of networking and security at VMware, at that time commented: “We are working with partners such as Gigamon to help enable customers to leverage the tools in which they have invested time and money by extending the capabilities through the VMware NSX platform. VMware and Gigamon provide customers with holistic active visibility across physical and virtual networks.”

Late last month VSS Monitoring unveiled the Optimizer 2400, which makes end-to-end traffic visibility and packet broker functionality available at an affordable price point for enterprises. Listing at $19,995, the Optimizer 2400 delivers Layer 2-7 packet filtering and dynamic load-balancing for networking monitoring, management, and security tools.

“… network operators want a cost-effective migration path to SDN, not a costly new operating model that rejects hardware acceleration where it’s still required to optimize price/performance,” says Harding. “The Optimizer 2400 is one such step, and we believe a fairly significant one because it establishes a new standard for making an enterprise-wide visibility plane even more cost-effective.” 

That’s important given that 23 percent of organizations experience serious, service impacting problems every day; 50 percent experience problems monthly; and 44 percent of companies don’t know they are being hacked at any given moment due to data overload, according to a CIO Insight survey.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

Executive Editor, TMC

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