Infographic: Moments in the First 40 Years of Mobile

You’ve probably heard by now that mobile phones have a 40th birthday this week.  As they’ve gone from bricks to sleek and smart; from simple texts to immersive experiences; from occasional use to human sensors. It’s been an interesting trip.  In addition to the typical things you might see on a timeline about mobile (1983 – the first commercially available mobile phone released. 1990 to 2011 – mobile phone subscriptions grow from 12 million to 6 billion … actually, Wikipedia has a pretty comprehensive page that you don’t need me to repeat here.) our mighty BYOD solutions team created a timeline graphic with some other interesting events:

First time a mobile phone was used on Saved By The Bell?  First time you could run a WebEx meeting on an iPhone?  First time the Pope tweeted?  All that and more, below.

For a more in-depth review of the importance of this anniversary, you should check out Bob Friday’s Looking Beyond the Mobile Phone.  You’ll get his perspectives on how mobility is evolving and what this means for the Internet of Everything and the network of tomorrow.

BTW:  Want to use this infographic on your blog?  Just link back here and you can use this code:

Click to see a larger version:
Mobile 40th infog-FA EN

By the way, does seeing that Saved By The Bell started airing in almost 25 years ago make anyone else feel old?  Like this?…

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Cisco UCS – Quintessential Fabric-based computing – Part 2

In Part 1 of this blog series, I introduced Gartner’s definition of Fabric based infrastructure (FBI).  I explained the benefit of data center fabrics with the promise of continuing in a follow on blog.  Some readers rightly pointed out to me that I had not yet touched on the automation benefits. This video featuring Gartner analyst, Donna Scott and Cisco CTO Paul Perez provides a great overview of the benefits namely:

  • Capital cost savings with infrastructure consolidation
  • Lower operating costs with automation
  • Speed of implementation and infrastructure deployment
  • Better SLAs with faster recovery or migrations

Let’s dig a bit deeper and start by looking at the difference between a FBI server and a run of the mill server.  FBI essentially lets us define the profile of a server in software. The profile here refers to as many as 120 attributes of a physical server stored as meta data in a profile. These attributes include BIOS version, LAN connection parameters, SAN connection parameters, UUID, MAC Address etc.


In the case of run of the mill servers some of these attributes remain the same throughout the life of the physical server. You may be able to alter other attributes with manual operations through proprietary user interfaces.  As shown in the figure above, the server identity (service profile) of a FBI server is abstracted from the physical server.

FBISrvThe benefit  (shown above) is that modifying the identity and purpose of a server is now a breeze. It is as easy as dropping a software profile on to a physical server.  You can now pool resources for multiple workloads and adopt just in time provisioning and de-provisioning.  Unlike other solutions, which continue to build layers of management software to stitch together legacy infrastructure, FBI enables on-demand provisioning from shared pools of infrastructure resources. With the introduction of the Cisco VIC 1225 in the second half of last year you can even make Cisco UCS rack optimized C-Series servers part of the FBI and manage them with service profiles.

Bottom line: Cisco UCS is to physical servers as a hypervisor is to virtual servers.

The Cisco UCS Manager running in the Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnect manages, stores and restores service profiles.  It goes further to expose an API, lends itself to modifying updating and moving service profiles, programmatically.   As server life cycles ( become more dynamic with cloud deployments these capabilities are indispensible.  The power of APIs simply cannot be underestimated these days.

The APIs are the underpinnings of automation and orchestration of server infrastructure and essential for management of data centers with error free operation and high availability. With API’s and service profiles, data center managers can enforce policies and standardization which in turn reduce errors, tedious trouble shooting and in the end save time. From a maintenance stand point server failures can now be fixed much faster. Since there is no manual configuration you can significantly lower mean time to recovery (MTTR).  An older blog lists customers who have quantified these benefits. The Cisco UCS API is open and you can even dabble with it using the UCS Platform Emulator even before investing in the physical infrastructure.

In the third and final installment of this blog series, I will discuss fabric extension into virtual machines. I will also discuss the benefits it brings to application workloads running on Cisco UCS servers.

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#EngineersUnplugged S2|Ep8: Secure Hybrid Cloud + Whiteboarding Game

This week features another exciting double edition for Engineers Unplugged, complete with a whiteboarding game to help you hone your craft. But first, business. Listen in as Brian Gracely (VirtuStream, @bgracely) and Jase McCarty (EMC, @jasemccarty) discuss the benefits of secure hybrid cloud:

The Magic Balloon with Dave Henry

The Magic Balloon with Dave Henry

But wait, there’s more! For anyone looking to hone their whiteboard craft, here’s a great game, Magic Balloon, taught to me by Dave Henry (Accunet Solution, @davemhenry):

Welcome to Engineers Unplugged, where technologists talk to each other the way they know best, with a whiteboard. The rules are simple:

  1. Episodes will publish weekly (or as close to it as we can manage)
  2. Subscribe to the podcast here:
  3. Follow the #engineersunplugged conversation on Twitter
  4. Submit ideas for episodes or volunteer to appear by Tweeting to @CommsNinja
  5. Practice drawing unicorns

You too can guest star on Engineers Unplugged. We’re setting the schedule for taping at EMC World now, contact @CommsNinja with your show ideas.

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Humorous New Video – Catalyst Compact switch deployments in Enterprise, Retail, Hospitality and Education.

The Catalyst Compact Switch gives you the the flexibility of connecting and powering networking devices without running long Ethernet cables from the wiring closet. It is a small form factor switch that can be powered over Ethernet, and is silent, secure and resilient. Amongst other verticals, the compact switch has been very successful in diverse environments in retail, hospitality and enterprise. A new Lippis Report details how the compact switch extends the borderless network services to the furthest endpoints.

This new video highlights the value of the compact switch, such as cable reduction, mounting flexibility, security and PoE.


Share this video!  Everyone needs a little Switch Therapy from time to time:

For more information please see the compact switch At-A-Glance or visit

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Cisco UCS Delivers the best 2-socket Virtualized SAP Sales and Distribution (SD) Benchmark result in a Linux environment

On March 19th, 2013 Cisco announced the best 2-socket virtualized SAP Sales and Distribution (SD) Benchmark result in a Linux environment with the Cisco Unified Computing System™ (Cisco UCS®) delivering high scalability and low latency in virtualized SAP Business Suite deployments.

Cisco’s benchmark result for the Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server show support for up to 5530 concurrent users and a SAP Application Performance Standard (SAPS) score of 30,270 derived from the processing of 605,330 order line items per hour and 1,816,000 dialog steps per hour. This result demonstrates that a Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server configured with a LSI 400-GB SLC WarpDrive can deliver high scalability and low latency in virtualized SAP Business Suite deployments.

The tested configuration consisted of a Cisco UCS chassis equipped with one Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server running Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6.4 on KVM. The server was configured with two 2.90-GHz, 8-core Intel Xeon processor E5-2690 CPUs and 256 GB of 1600-MHz memory. The blade server ran both the SAP Business Suite application software and the 64-bit Sybase ASE 15.7 in a single virtual machine. SAP Enhancement Package 5 for SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) 6.0 was used in this scenario. The Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server recorded the best two-way virtualized SAP SD Benchmark result on SAP Enhancement Package 5 for SAP ERP 6.0 and Sybase ASE 15.7. In the test, 5530 SAP SD Benchmark users were supported while a consistent application response of less than one second was maintained.

 The “Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server: High Performance and Flexibility for Virtualized SAP Business Suite Deployment” Performance Brief provides additional benchmark configuration details.Official Benchmark Certification is available at the SAP® Standard Application Benchmarks certification web site.

Many business organizations currently struggle with the cost of maintaining RISC processor–based servers running proprietary operating systems and third-party database management systems. Cisco UCS enables organizations to use lower-cost industry-standard x86-architecture servers, open source operating systems, database management systems, and allows organizations to run SAP Business Suite applications in virtualized environments. With Cisco UCS, organizations can easily balance workloads across a pool of servers to manage service levels according to business priorities, scale environments up and down as needed, and contain costs by consolidating workloads onto a smaller number of servers.

Using the Cisco UCS, IT departments can run virtualized SAP Business Suite applications with the flexibility, scalability, and lower cost of virtualized environments. These innovations delivering high scalability and low latency in virtualized SAP Business Suite deployments and the dramatic reduction in the number of physical components required illustrates the value created by Cisco UCS solution for customers planning migration away from proprietary RISC/Unix based systems to open source operating system software and standards-based computing infrastructure.

For additional information on Cisco UCS and Cisco UCS solutions please visit


Girish Kulkarni

Sr. Product Marketing Manager

Unified Computing System

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Learn How You Can Benefit from Cloud Computing Part 2 ̶ “Adopting the Cloud”

In my March 18th post, I wrote about a series of Cisco educational webinars on the challenges and opportunities of cloud computing. Two of the webinars take place soon – April 9 and April 17 – so you might want to “check them out.”

In addition to those webinars, Cisco is joining leading analyst firm Frost & Sullivan, EMC, and Verizon Terremark for a live seminar series in three U.S. cities (Houston- Dallas- New York City ) , entitled


CxOs are adopting the Cloud at increasing rates, allowing IT expenditures to be targeted at business growth. This seminar will address not only why but how the Cloud is being implemented successfully with high availability, security, and regulatory compliance.

Each seminar will delve into the business benefits and adoption trends of Cloud Computing during an informative morning session. Attendees will hear:

  • Insights on satisfying ever-increasing enterprise and business unit computing needs through secure, on-demand Cloud-based (IaaS) solutions
  • The latest on business adoption and technological trends in Cloud Computing
  • Appropriate recommendations for bringing your business into the Cloud
  • How the Cloud can help you boost productivity, reduce expenses, and quickly respond to computing resource demands from new projects or business units

I encourage you to register to attend at the location nearest you.  Learn how utilizing the Cloud can make your business more flexible, more productive, more cost efficient, and more responsive to ever-changing stakeholder demands.  We hope to see you there

Dallas, Texas
April 9, 2013

Houston, Texas
April 11, 2013

New York City, New York
April 16, 2013

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Borderless Networks Bits and Pieces This Week & How to Win an iPad

In the next few weeks we have a couple great webinars coming up, we’ve recently been investing in our community, the Unified Access Challenge was extended until April 26, and the Supervisor 720 Engine for the Catalyst 6500 turned 10 on Sunday!

Webinars: This week we have two webinars — both on Wednesday.

 Borderless Networks Community
Community: While it’s been stagnant for a few years, we’ve started sprucing up the Borderless Networks Community. Over the last few weeks it’s had a light facelift (goal: make it less ugly), we’ve started getting product experts in to answer questions (hint: go ask questions you may have), and have started implementing a system for cataloging webinars. Our eventual goal is to create a one-stop-shop for webinars – both viewing on-demand webinars and registering for upcoming ditto. You may notice that the link for the 10am webinar above leads you to the community. It’s magic!

Ike with boxThe Unified Access Challenge was scheduled to end March 31.  However, due to popular demand (seriously) we’ve extended it until April 26.  If you’ve been lollygagging about, you should go take it.  Actually, if you’re at work now looking for something fun and distracting (that may win you a trip anywhere in the world or an iPad) you should go take the challenge.  It comes in three flavors:  Partner (Only if you’re a Cisco partner) and for everyone else: English, and Spanish.

When my first car — an SUV — turned 10 (then 11, 12, 13…) I used to joke that I was going to bake it a big cake and then run it (the cake) over with the car. I liked the image of my boxy blue SUV obliterating a round pink cake. While I never did this (mustn’t waste cake), I was thinking of it as I posted the Catalyst 6500′s blog this last Sunday. Yes, the Catalyst 6500 blogged again! This time, to commemorate the 10th birthday of the Supervisor 720 Engine – Launched exactly 10 years ago to the day (if you guessed March 31, 2003, you’d be correct). Since I’ve heard networking equipment and frosting don’t work well together, we didn’t bake the Sup720 a cake. Do you have any suggestions on what we should do for its birthday?

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