Nuage Networks today introduced a module for its SDN overlay software to allow network operators to correlate faults in the network overlay and fabric underlay.
SDN overlays allow carriers to easily instantiate applications on private clouds, but there's still an underlying network of switches and routers that require visibility and fault management. When there's a problem in the underlay, operators need to know which applications break, what services are disconnected and which developers need to be notified, Nuage Networks CEO Sunil Khandekar told Light Reading.
Nuage is a Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU)-owned company specializing in SDN overlays.
By correlating faults in the underlay and overlay, Nuage's Virtualized Services Assurance Platform helps network operators get the programmability benefits of SDN while preserving the investment in existing underlying network fabrics.
VSAP "provides CIOs and CTOs ability to instantly do the correlation between underlay and overlay, and get relevant, accurate and actionable information so they can quickly resolve any faults," Khandekar says. "That's what's missing in taking SDN networks from the lab to large-scale deployments and making them truly scalable."
Additionally, network operators can proactively monitor -- in advance -- whether changes to the network will cause problems, as well as performing impact analysis of network upgrades. "If they want to upgrade a certain part of the network, what does that mean -- which overlays will be affected, which virtual machines, which apps?" Khandekar says.
The capability positions Nuage as an alternative to both Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and VMware Inc. (NYSE: VMW). Cisco offers visibility between the overlay and underlay, but only if you use Cisco's own software and hardware from top to bottom. VMware lets you use any underlying hardware with its software, but does not let you correlate faults in the hardware with software problems, Khandekar says.
But that could change, as Big Switch this week introduced Big Cloud Fabric 2.6, providing physical network automation and visibility in combination with VMware NSX. (See Big Switch Adds VMware Support.)
Nuage faces an uncertain future, as parent Alcatel-Lucent has agreed to be acquired by Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) Nuage will complement AlcaLu-Nokia products and services, say Heavy Reading analysts. (See Will Nokia Appreciate AlcaLu's Nuage?)