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ICYMI: Cisco introduces free version of ConfD software

ICYMI: Cisco offers a free version of its ConfD software, Ixia becomes testing partner for ONUG and CTCC in China chooses Nuage Networks' SDN technology.

Cisco released a free version of its ConfD management software, Basic ConfD, in a bid to aid the development of programmable physical and virtual networking devices. Cisco acquired ConfD, along with Network Control System, a network orchestration product, last year as part of its purchase of Swedish software developer Tail-f.

According to Cisco, outlining the future of ConfD demonstrates the company's "commitment to advancing open standards in the best interest of the networking industry."

The free Basic ConfD software will be available for production use without additional fees for NETCONF, the YANG-based protocol that governs how network devices can be managed and configured.

The premium version of ConfD with a complete set of north-bound interfaces -- including command-line interface, representative state transfer and Simple Network Management Protocol -- will continue to be commercially available, Cisco said.

"ConfD dramatically reduces the time and resources needed to develop network management interfaces," said Fredrik Lundberg, Cisco's cloud and virtualization group director of strategy, in a statement. "Networking vendors leverage Basic ConfD to rapidly develop products that are fully NETCONF- and YANG-compliant."

By implementing this programmable network architecture, Cisco expects that service providers will reduce their configuration and management costs by up to 50% over a five-year period, while also being able to add new services. Some 75 network equipment vendors already use ConfD, Cisco said.

Ixia joins with ONUG as official testing partner

The Open Networking User Group (ONUG) said Ixia would become the group's official testing partner for ONUG 2015 and subsequent shows. Ixia's platform lets users test OpenFlow and network functions virtualization (NVF) deployments on their physical and virtual networks.

It will also be available for those wishing to stage a Proof of Concept (PoC) demonstration of an ONUG Working Group use case.

"As an early champion of software designed networks, Ixia was one of the first companies to develop testing solutions for OpenFlow and NFV," said Bethany Mayer, president and CEO of Ixia, in a statement. "Our award-winning solutions validate, secure, and optimize virtual and physical networks and data centers at all stages of the network lifecycle so that operators can verify application performance and security resilience."

Ixia will provide support for vendors to stage PoCs at Ixia's iSimCity lab before the upcoming ONUG spring event to be held May 13-14 at Columbia University.

"ONUG started with a vision to give IT business leaders a collective voice to transform networking and, with the inclusion of the Working Groups, has evolved into a user-led community driving the development of new multi-vendor, interoperability PoC demonstrations," said Nick Lippis, chairman and co-founder of ONUG, in a press release.

At Columbia, with the assistance of Ixia, ONUG will focus on demonstrating vendor proof points of ONUG working group use cases to assist the ONUG community in its deployment plans.

Nuage Networks' SDN technology chosen by CTCC in China

Nuage Networks said CTCC, the cloud computing branch of China Telecom, selected its SDN technology to help improve public cloud services in China. CTCC is investing in virtualization technologies to increase the agility of its complex network infrastructure.

"We are excited to work with CTCC in support of their public cloud implementation," said Sunil Khandekar, CEO of Nuage Networks, in a statement. "CTCC's customers deserve instant access to public cloud services that are supported by a network that is capable of responding to their changing needs, and the full range of applications that they require and depend on to power their businesses."

Working with Nuage Networks, CTCC said that its cloud infrastructure will now be able to create a virtual machine for customers within minutes of a self-service request.

"We are pleased that Nuage Networks has helped us to achieve scalability in our cloud infrastructure and improve the availability of the services," said Guang Xiaoming, chief technology officer of CTTC, in a statement. "We can now offer our customers self-serve public cloud services in a more secure and dynamic way, giving them services that are tailored to meet their unique business requirements."

Pluribus raises $50 million in new round of fundraising

Pluribus, an SDN company that offers network virtualization for private and public cloud data centers, has raised a total of $95 million, including a recent Series D round of $50 million led by Singapore-based Temasek Holdings. Pluribus says it will use the money for marketing and new product development.

"Pluribus is one of the few companies in the IT infrastructure space that has taken a platform approach to deliver on the promise of SDN network programmability, operational simplicity and unification of the economic model of computing and networking," said Kittu Kolluri, general partner at venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates, in a statement.

The company's flagship product is Netvisor, a programmable, distributed operating system that enables network virtualization. It provides a platform for network fabric-based computing and supports both physical and virtual network infrastructure.

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