Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Future of Network Virtualization with NSX

Bruce Davie, who lead the team that created MPLS, spoke about some of the new features in NSX 6.2.  He started talking about hardware VTEPs (VXLAN Tunnel Endpoints) and how they are currently just L2 bridges. It looks like they will be adding all of the Firewall, Load-Balancing, and Routing capabilities soon.

Bruce also showed a great demo of the Root-Cause analysis for physical paths that is being included with the vRealize Operations product.   With the growing use of overlay networks to carry traffic around the datacenter, the borders have really blurred and troubleshooting is understandably more complicated.   In his demo he showed a leaf spine archetecture using ECMP that had a switch port go down.  vRealize can now show the entire physical path as well as the logical path and was able to easily show which specific switch and port were causing the issue!

Also, he spoke about the new distributed load balancing features being introduced with NSX 6.2.  I love this idea of scale out network services.. and something I did not realize, was that the load balancers are context aware in their decisions.   For example, the balancing can happen based on actual network or CPU load of a node rather than just equally splitting the connections per node.

It was a great talk and really opened my eyes to how far NSX has come in just 18 months.

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