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SDN Journal: Article

Newfangled ADN Trumps Software Defined Networking

CloudWeaver is a practical advance on SDN and unlike traditional silo’d monitoring solutions for the cloud

Software Defined Networking (SNA) is still only a baby buzzword barely plumbed – although it may have already caused bad blood between a couple of giants in the trade – when along comes a French start-up called Lyatiss repotted to Silicon Valley and not yet out of beta that says that – however chi-chi – Software Defined Networking is a limp, insufficient technology compared to the more evolved Application Defined Networking (ADN) widgetry it’s inventing.

Lyatiss spun out of INRIA, the French National Institute for Research in Computer Science. And this week it emerged from its stealth cocoon in Santa Clara, California backed by a $4 million A round from Idinvest Partners and IT-Translation, the VC operation founded by INRIA and CDC Entreprises, an offshoot of the French bank Caisse des Dépôts et Consignation.

It’s expecting a B round in a few months probably from a Silicon Valley VC that’s said to be really interested.

Lyattiss Co-Founder & CEO Pascale Vicat-Blanc at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley in 2011

Anyway, the start-up’s first Software-as-a-Service ADN product, called CloudWeaver for Amazon Web Services, just went into public beta with the production version scheduled to appear at the end of the quarter at prices based on scale that are supposed to be more affordable than anything Amazon can provide.

Other clouds will follow starting with private clouds. VMware and Eucalyptus are possibilities.

CloudWeaver is a practical advance on SDN and unlike traditional silo’d monitoring solutions for the cloud – which are centered on servers or on network performance management – CloudWeaver’s framework helps users continuously adapt the elastic infrastructure of the cloud to the needs of their applications to get optimal performance. All they basically have to do is tweak their AWS settings.

It promises complete end-to-end visibility of all the data flow in the deployment showing what resources are being used and what’s talking to what through flow maps that indicate the communication between resources and what may be slowing the data down or stopping it altogether.

It uses information flow to track application performance across multiple virtual machines, web services and someday multiple clouds.

It lets users control the cloud infrastructure through an intuitive interface so they can anticipate congestion, fix bottlenecks in real-time and in a click, maximize resource utilization according to the flow patterns and minimize infrastructure costs.

Cost is a big issue because of the constant temptation to over-provision.

The widgetry is supposed to understand exactly what an application – any application – needs from the cloud, say, in the way of CPU performance, bandwidth and latency, and – since the user’s not a networking expert – adapts the network automatically and dynamically to those needs.

It doesn’t have to be automatic because there are sometimes choices to be made that are best made with human judgment but it can all be automated.

The company says ADN lets users effectively own their own cloud performance and get maximum availability, predictable performance and differentiation out of their workloads.

Lyatiss co-founder and CEO Pascale Vicat-Blanc, who was research director at INRIA, explains that “As cloud applications incorporate rich services – video, gaming, real-time collaboration and Big Data – businesses deploying these mission-critical applications will run into a variety of issues, including unpredictable latencies and potentially disastrous cascading effects from bottlenecks, failures and cloud outages. In addition, they’ll experience wasted capacity and spiraling costs resulting from over-provisioning.”

She’s out to fix all that particularly for such things as the pesky Hadoop and Cassandra.

“Software Defined Networking,” she says, “is not sufficient to address the predictability and performance issues encountered in current cloud applications, nor can it meet the need for infrastructure differentiation and software control. Instead, evolving to a complementary ADN solution, like CloudWeaver, will be required.”

SDN focuses on controlling the forwarding of individual packets in the network infrastructure. ADN, on the other hand, orchestrates application flows – or the actual sequences of information exchanged.

It accelerates and streamlines the movement of data throughout the entire virtual infrastructure of each application. With ADN, applications can adapt their networking environments, using APIs, so application delivery and performance across public and private cloud networks are optimized, without compromising application portability or security.

Lyatiss says CloudWeaver is the only ADN environment that focuses on programming and optimizing cloud applications’ virtual networked pool of resources to increase predictability and performance, while ensuring application uptime and optimizing operational efficiency.

See also [PDF] here.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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