Avaya Launches Virtualisation Strategy

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Avaya has launched a new data networking architecture that helps enterprises reap the benefits of virtualisation in a more simplified and cost-effective manner. This technology utilises a new, end-to-end enterprise-wide architecture designed to help CIOs and IT departments meet the surging demand for new content and business collaboration applications.

Avaya Virtual Enterprise Network Architecture (Avaya VENA) allows organisations to more easily optimise business applications and service deployments in and between data centres and campuses. Avaya VENA reduces costs and significantly improves time to service by more efficiently optimising the network connections between application servers and end users – essentially providing an end-to-end connection from the desktop all the way to the data centre. It also reduces risks for CIOs by simplifying provisioning and policy configurations, reducing network re-designs, and providing new, streamlined tools for network management.

Avaya is also announcing a series of relationships in support of Avaya VENA with companies including VMware, an industry leader in virtualisation and cloud infrastructure; QLogic, an industry leader in converged networking; Coraid, an industry innovator in converged Ethernet SAN storage; and Silver Peak Systems, the leader in data centre WAN optimisation – in addition to many other companies that have joined as members of Avaya’s DevConnect program, an initiative to develop, market and sell innovative third-party products that interoperate with Avaya technology. Avaya VENA is based on open industry standards, and Avaya is aggressively pursuing and building out a broader ecosystem of technology collaborators to support the architecture.

“No one else can offer this level of simplicity around virtualisation and collaboration,” said Kevin Kennedy, president and CEO, Avaya. “Together with our technology partners, we are delivering a truly revolutionary and unique solution that maximises the business model for virtualisation and data centre networking. The new Avaya VENA architecture, coupled with our cutting-edge innovation in business collaboration, is re-defining the way enterprises communicate.”

“Enterprises today are asking for more than just choice when looking at networking solutions. They clearly need solutions that will empower IT to quickly respond to changing business requirements, improve time to service, while simplifying their network and reducing costs,” said Mark Fabbi, vice president and distinguished analyst, Gartner. “Enabling the agile enterprise requires a new way of approaching network architecture. It requires a new level of synergy between collaborative real-time applications, the virtualized data centre environment and the underlying, enabling network.”

The new architecture features a ‘Virtual Services Fabric’ that spans the entire network and enables one-touch provisioning for the full range of capabilities provided by Virtual Services Networks. This architecture increases flexibility and scalability by delivering an infrastructure that creates a ‘private cloud’, to deliver always-on content and access to applications in a dramatically simplified model. This approach also protects enterprises’ core networks from the costly failures and human-error issues that are often experienced by the traditional, complicated process for provisioning or adding, deleting or changing applications in a virtualized environment.

“Yankee Group research shows that human error accounts for 37 percent of all network downtime – the single biggest factor in network disruption. Avaya’s Virtual Enterprise Network Architecture reduces costs and improves time to service by providing a more efficient way to manage the connectivity between users and their content,” said Zeus Kerravala, senior vice president and distinguished research fellow, Yankee Group. “Avaya VENA provides an end-to-end connection from the desktop all the way through to the data centre – a critical requirement to the success of virtual computing. The new architecture also reduces risks for CIOs by providing new, streamlined tools for network management, IT agility and simplifies the process of provisioning and policy configurations.”

Avaya VENA’s Virtual Services Fabric is built on enhanced IEEE Shortest Path Bridging to provide resiliency, simplicity and a consistent interconnect that transparently supports co-existing services. Avaya VENA is implemented on new data centre modular and fixed platforms in addition to being a simple upgrade option for existing products.

The new architecture is supported by the Avaya Virtual Services Platform 9000 (Avaya VSP 9000), a future-ready platform that has been architected to scale in support of emerging 40/100G technologies. Avaya VENA is also supported by Avaya Ethernet Routing Switch 8600 and 8800 products. Avaya is currently developing a range of next-generation, Top-of-Rack solutions as part of its VSP portfolio for data centres to support high-density 10G with an evolution to 40/100G and FCoE. Additionally, a series of campus products will be introduced in 2011 allowing easy extension of the fabric all the way to the campus and branch edge. Avaya data products are designed to deliver energy efficiencies that can reduce enterprise operating costs, while evolving current infrastructure investment to help eliminate the need for costly forklift upgrades.