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Category Archives for "Virtualization"

DPU Hype Considered Harmful

The hype generated by the “VMware supports DPU offload” announcement already resulted in fascinating misunderstandings. Here’s what I got from a System Architect:

We are dealing with an interesting scenario where a customer had limited data center space, but applications demand more resources. We are evaluating whether we could offload ESXi processing to DPUs (Pensando) to use existing servers as bare-metal servers. Would it be a use case for DPU?

First of all, congratulations to whichever vendor marketer managed to put that guy in that state of mind. Well done, sir, well done. Now for a dose of reality.

Are DPUs Any Good?

After VMware launched DPU-based acceleration for VMware NSX, marketing-focused websites frantically started discussing the benefits of DPUs. Although I’ve been writing about SmartNICs and DPUs for years, it’s time for another closer look at the emperor’s clothes.

What Is a DPU

DPU (Data Processing Unit) is a fancier name for a network adapter formerly known as SmartNIC – a server repackaged into an interface card form factor. We had them for decades (anyone remembers iSCSI offload adapters?)

Ubuntu 20.04 Docker image – Python For Network Engineers

This is an updated Docker image of Python For Network Engineers (PFNE) based on Ubuntu 20.04 (minimal server distro). It contains all necessary tools for network / devops engineers to test automation and learn Python: OpensslNet-toolsIPutilsIProuteIPerfTCPDumpNMAPPython 2Python 3ParamikoNetmikoAnsiblePyntcNAPALMNetcatSocat If you notice a missing package which could be a value added for the scope of the … Continue reading Ubuntu 20.04 Docker image – Python For Network Engineers

Linux Bonding, LLDP, and MAC Flapping

Sometimes a painfully troublesome networking problem can have a complicated and brain-twisting root cause, one which you dread having to explain to peers and managers. However, sometimes the root cause is dead simple and makes you feel silly for how long it took you to find it. Today, I had one of the latter and […]

The post Linux Bonding, LLDP, and MAC Flapping appeared first on Packet Pushers.

VMware Aria: If You Can’t Beat Public Cloud, Maybe You Can Manage It

VMware  announced an ambitious project, VMware Aria, at VMware Explore 2022. Aria offers multi-cloud management for enterprises that use services in more than one public cloud. The speed and sprawl of cloud adoption has become a problem for enterprises. Companies are having a hard time containing costs, monitoring performance, and enforcing security and compliance policies. […]

The post VMware Aria: If You Can’t Beat Public Cloud, Maybe You Can Manage It appeared first on Packet Pushers.

Human Challenges Of Network Virtualization – Lessons Learned From NFV Projects

For the last four years I’ve worked on Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) projects at a couple of European Cloud Service Providers (CSPs). The implementation of these projects has proven to be messy (messiness is part of human nature, after all), and I wanted to share some of the lessons I’ve learned.

The post Human Challenges Of Network Virtualization – Lessons Learned From NFV Projects appeared first on Packet Pushers.

Infrastructure 4. How to Run Cisco Nexus 9000v in Proxmox to Lab Cisco Data Centre

Hello my friend,

We use Proxmox in our Karneliuk Lab Cloud (KLC), which is a driving power behind our Network Automation and Nornir trainings. It allows to run out of the box the vast majority of VMs with network opening systems: Cisco IOS or Cisco IOS XR, Arista EOS, Nokia SR OS, Nvidia Cumulus, and many others. However, when we faced recently a need to emulate a customer’s data centre, which is build using Cisco Nexus 9000 switches, it transpired that this is not that straightforward and we had to spend quite a time in order to find a working solution. Moreover, we figured out that there are no public guides explaining how to do it. As such, we decide to create this blog.

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No part of this blogpost could be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any
means, electronic, mechanical or photocopying, recording,
or otherwise, for commercial purposes without the
prior permission of the author.

How Does KLC Help with Automation?

A lot of network automation trainings worldwide imply that a student has to build a lab his/her-own. Such an approach, obviously, is the easiest for Continue reading

Proxmox/Ceph – Full Mesh HCI Cluster w/ Dynamic Routing

If you have ever used Proxmox, you know it’s a capable and robust open-source hypervisor. When coupled with Ceph, the two can provide a powerful HyperConverged (HCI) platform; rivaling mainstream closed-source solutions like those from Dell, Nutanix, VMWare, etc., and all based on free (paid support available) and open-source software. The distributed nature of HCI […]

The post Proxmox/Ceph – Full Mesh HCI Cluster w/ Dynamic Routing appeared first on Packet Pushers.

AWS Automatic EC2 Instance Recovery

On March 30th 2022, AWS announced automatic recovery of EC2 instances. Does that mean that AWS got feature-parity with VMware High Availability, or that VMware got it right from the very start? No and No.

Automatic Instance Recover Is Not High Availability

Reading the AWS documentation (as opposed to the feature announcement) quickly reveals a caveat or two. The automatic recovery is performed if an instance becomes impaired because of an underlying hardware failure or a problem that requires AWS involvement to repair.

Will Open Compute Backing Drive SIOV Adoption?

Virtualization has been an engine of efficiency in the IT industry over the past two decades, decoupling workloads from the underlying hardware and thus allowing multiple workloads to be consolidated into a single physical system as well as moved around relatively easily with live migration of virtual machines.

Will Open Compute Backing Drive SIOV Adoption? was written by Daniel Robinson at The Next Platform.

Running BGP between Virtual Machines and Data Center Fabric

Got this question from one of my readers:

When adopting the BGP on the VM model (say, a Kubernetes worker node on top of vSphere or KVM or Openstack), how do you deal with VM migration to another host (same data center, of course) for maintenance purposes? Do you keep peering with the old ToR even after the migration, or do you use some BGP trickery to allow the VM to peer with whatever ToR it’s closest to?

Short answer: you don’t.

Kubernetes was designed in a way that made worker nodes expendable. The Kubernetes cluster (and all properly designed applications) should recover automatically after a worker node restart. From the purely academic perspective, there’s no reason to migrate VMs running Kubernetes.

A Complete Rethinking Of Server Virtualization Hypervisors

Server virtualization has been around a long time, has come to different classes of machines and architectures over the decades to drive efficiency increases, and has seemingly reached a level of maturity that means we don’t have to give it a lot of thought.

A Complete Rethinking Of Server Virtualization Hypervisors was written by Timothy Prickett Morgan at The Next Platform.

Marvell’s OCTEON 10 Challenges All Comers For DPU Supremacy

This article was originally posted on the Packet Pushers Ignition site on July 9, 2021. The ascendance of Software Defined Networking (SDN) has catalyzed a renaissance in specialized hardware designed to accelerate and offload workloads from general-purpose CPUs. Decoupling network transport and services via software-defined abstraction layers lets a new generation of programmable networking hardware […]

The post Marvell’s OCTEON 10 Challenges All Comers For DPU Supremacy appeared first on Packet Pushers.

MikroTik CHR – Breaking the 100G barrier

Introduction

The world is strange today. Despite the Covid-19 crisis all over the world, most ISPs are fighting a battle to deliver more bandwidth on a daily basis.

  • Work from home
  • Online schools
  • increasing content consumption

All pushed ISPs to their bandwidth limits, leaving ISP’s no option but to look for upgrades, for everlasting bandwidth demands. There, they are having another set of problems, facing them in this completely new and strange world. Chip shortage, logistic and labor health issues caused higher prices and no stock availability. Here in IP ArchiTechs, we are spending lot of our time finding a good solution for our customers and to help them overcome these hard times. Whether that is our regular Team meeting or just a chat with our colleagues in almost any occasion someone mentions something about new solution to improve capacity and performance for our customers.

Starting with a thought, what is available as a platform today, and of course it’s ready to be shipped immediately after you checkout and pay one thing obviously was just in front of me. X86 server, dozens of them. They are left from the time when we were buying new hardware just because new generation Continue reading

Infrastructure 3. Deploying High Performance Pure Virtual Linux Router – 6WIND

Hello my friend,

Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) is not a new topic. There are numerous blogpost and articles, even in our blog, which review this topic. Yet, there is much more we can cover. Today we’ll share some insights on one of the very interesting products existing on the market today: 6WIND vRouter Turbo Router. We have a limited amount of days to write a few articles under our evaluation license. Hence, we’ll focus only on the most critical elements.

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No part of this blogpost could be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any
means, electronic, mechanical or photocopying, recording,
or otherwise, for commercial purposes without the
prior permission of the author.

Is Linux Suitable for Automation?

It absolutely is. In fact, Linux is the real home for automation systems, as in many cases it hosts the tools you create in Ansible, Python, Bash, Go or any other language. At the same time, in order to effectively work with Linux, you need to know how to automate management and operation of Linux operating system itself. And you will be absolutely capable to do that, once you attend our Continue reading

Circular Dependencies Considered Harmful

A while ago my friend Nicola Modena sent me another intriguing curveball:

Imagine a CTO who has invested millions in a super-secure data center and wants to consolidate all compute workloads. If you were asked to run a BGP Route Reflector as a VM in that environment, and would like to bring OSPF or ISIS to that box to enable BGP ORR, would you use a GRE tunnel to avoid a dedicated VLAN or boring other hosts with routing protocol hello messages?

While there might be good reasons for doing that, my first knee-jerk reaction was:

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