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User Rank: Light Beer
6/27/2017 | 3:45:38 PM
Re: Closed Loop vs. Open Loop
SSL (more accurately TLS these days) is not a secure protocol. Sure the encryption is fine, but the code around the implementation is weak and has been broken numerous ways. In addition, TLS/SL suffers from man in the middle attacks that any decent hacker can affect on a session. Further, technology exists to spoof certificates such that the sender and receiver think they are communicating securely and don't seen the man in the middle which can view all data to and from. Further, certificate authorities become a single point of failure and it is widely speculated the big CAs have already been hacked to the point this layer of security by itself is circumspect for really sensitive data transmissions.

The 128T solution appears to try and counteract man in the middle using source/destination tracking, but if the router tables get compromised, the session security layer won't matter. In short, this appears to be a lazy/cheap way of applying network security that will NOT replace the veractiy of tunnels and other point to point secrity options. Companies with highly sensitive data are likely to adopt only those standards that are proven secure, so I do not expect TLS or 128T session security to replace existing secure tunnels anytime soon.
User Rank: Light Beer
8/29/2016 | 1:56:08 PM
Closed Loop vs. Open Loop
It seems to me all of these systems have to exist in a closed loop model (i.e. both ends of the flow need to be aware of each other).  The world is moving to an open-loop model where all services will be accessed over the Internet and the WAN will cease to exist.  SD-WAN tries to fix the problem by tunneling between two systems to close the loop; it looks like 123 is trying to do it the same way just in another context--I don't see how anything that tries to close an open loop is the answer.  Obviously, I must be missing something here because a whole lot of smart people are saying otherwise.  Frankly, just give me two big pipes out to the Internet and leave me alone--webify everything so it's secured via SSL and you can keep all of the other NFV stuff.  
User Rank: Blogger
8/17/2016 | 10:55:33 AM
Re: Countering Big Trends
It's hard to get an accurate read on their architecture from what has been made public.  But it appears that they're not so much countering big trends as challenging the dominant networking paradigm. 

It goes back to the networking wars of late '70s (see John Day's Patterns in Network Architecture for an extended and biased account).  The central architectural tenet of the Internet is a stateless datapath, without a notion of a "connection" which is established, used for data transfer and released.  At the time, there was a valid case for simplicity of forwarding, short transactions completed in less than two round-trip times, and effortless re-routing.  However, over time, states, connections, and explicit set-up turned out to be so massively useful for so many reasons that we had to create work-arounds for their absence.  Thus, we ended up with hacks work-arounds like middleboxes, tunnels, DPI, NAT and MPLS. 

We have seen several attempts to revisit the connectionless paradigm.  All of them failed in the marketplace, despite their technical merits. It looks like 128T is yet another one, with a specific focus on branch-y enterprise networks and proprietary architecture and protocols.  If history repeats, it will be extremely difficult for them to achieve traction.  Good luck.
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/17/2016 | 3:04:36 AM
Long live marketing!
Oh dear... Since when is such an approach something new? It is known for years, and used for years. And tomorrow someone will brag with inventing a wheel?

User Rank: Light Beer
8/16/2016 | 2:37:32 PM
Re: Countering Big Trends
It's my understanding this is software-based and can run on standard hardware or VMs. But they are definitely bucking the SD-WAN trend. 

I'd agree it's interesting to see a company try to essentially start from scratch and figure out what networking should look like, even if the picture it products looks very different from where the industry seems to be headed now. 

At different times in the 30-some years I've been covering telecom, companies have tried this. A few have been succcessful - most have been acquired at some point and subsumed into another larger company. 

But this is different on a larger scale than most of the examples that come to mind right now. 
Sterling Perrin
Sterling Perrin,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/16/2016 | 2:23:34 PM
Countering Big Trends
Carol, it is always interesting to see a company running counter to prevailing trends but this company is tackling some big ones. SDN, NFV, white box hardware, and (now) SD-WANs are all moving in one direction. And, here, this company appears to want to run in the opposite direction.

I have not been briefed by the company and don't have full details, so I'm making comments based on the article and the marketing messaging they are coming out with. But I'm not clear on whether their innovations are coming mainly from hardware or from software. And IF they have software based innovation, why would they choose to market as a counter trend, rather than fit into one or more of the existing trends I listed?


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