HP recently unveiled an industry-leading data centre network fabric built on HP FlexNetwork architecture, enabling business agility for clients by delivering two times greater scalability and 75% less complexity over current network fabrics, while reducing network provisioning time from months to minutes.

As companies move to a cloud environment, legacy network architectures are buckling under the pressure for instant access to applications and services that offer a high-quality user experience.
Organisations also are struggling with the complexity of current data centre network fabric designs, which require manual device-by-device configurations and limit the performance of bandwidth-intensive applications.

HP is addressing these challenges with a series of software-defined network (SDN) data centre switches that deliver advanced automation capabilities and industry-leading scalability for bandwidth-intensive applications such as Hadoop.

The new offerings include the new HP FlexFabric 12900, which is the industry’s first OpenFlow-enabled core switch capable of scaling to meet the demands of increasing virtualised workloads.

“For the past 20 years, data centre networks have lagged in supporting new enterprise demands for cloud, virtualisation and big data,” says Keith Bothma, HP Networking country manager, HP South Africa.
“Only HP is positioned to deliver the industry’s most complete software-defined data centre network fabric with innovations that enable our customers to create a network foundation that will meet their needs today and well into the future.”

By simplifying network design and operations, new HP Networking solutions enable customers to:
* Improve IT productivity by unifying the virtual and physical fabric with new HP FlexFabric Virtual Switch 5900v software, which, in conjunction with the HP FlexFabric 5900 physical switch, delivers advanced networking functionalities such as policies and quality of service to a VMware environment. Integrated Virtual Ethernet Port Aggregator (VEPA) technology provides clear separation between server and network administrations to deliver operational simplicity.
* Reduce data centre footprint with the HP Virtualised Services Router (VSR), which allows services to be delivered on a virtual machine (VM), eliminating unnecessary hardware, by leveraging the industry’s first carrier-class software-based Network Function Virtualisation (NFV).

“Today’s data centre networks are somewhat static and limiting in their ability to scale – they are also complex and require manual provisioning for cloud and virtualised applications,” says Rohit Mehra, VP, Network Infrastructure, IDC.

“HP’s portfolio of physical and virtual switches, as well as its SDN-enabled network fabric, indicates its readiness to address many of these challenges, providing clients simplicity, scalability and automation to enable new services and applications for the data centre.”

HP FlexFabric solutions improve end-user application experience and enable customers to:
* Enhance support for complex, high data-consuming applications with the HP FlexFabric 12900 switch series, which manages bandwidth spikes with the built-in networking standard Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links (TRILL). The HP FlexFabric 12900 switch series can move up to three times more data across the network per 40-gigabit Ethernet (GbE) port compared to leading competitors.
* Improve virtualised application performance by up to 50% with the HP FlexFabric 11908, the industry’s first OpenFlow-enabled aggregation switch. HP FlexFabric 11908 delivers10/40 GbE connectivity for blade servers, such as HP c-Class servers with Virtual Connect FlexFabric modules, enabling flexible and cost-effective deployment for data centres.
* Boost resiliency by simplifying network service delivery with the HP HSR 6800 router series, which consolidates routing, firewall, switching and more than five times the security services of other solutions into one device that supports thousands of users.

“At the University of New Hampshire InterOperability Lab, we ensure interoperability and conformance to industry standards for networking products in an independent and neutral environment,” says Christina Dube, senior manager, Bridge Functions, InterOperability Lab, University of New Hampshire.
“In our multi-vendor lab, we recently tested interoperability of the industry’s first standard-based TRILL functionality with switch software Comware 7 available on the HP FlexFabric portfolio.”

“Providing solutions for increasing needs to scale out our clients’ application and services in our data centre is one of the key factors for our business success,” says Masaki Hayashi, director, Technology Division, IDC Frontier, a subsidiary of Yahoo! Japan.
“We considered a multitude of technologies and selected HP to help design a data centre network fabric based on the innovative standard TRILL to deliver very-large scale, high-performing and differentiated public cloud services across our data centres throughout Japan.”

HP’s unique single pane-of-glass management automates accelerated application and service delivery for SDN-enabled and traditional network devices from the data centre to the campus and branch.

This enables customers to:
* Improve application performance with templates for network services that simplify and automate network configurations for applications from edge to core with the HP Intelligent Management Center (IMC) Virtual Application Network Resource Automation Manager software.
* Simplify management of SDN and traditional network infrastructure operations with HP IMC SDN Manager, the industry’s first complete configuration, monitoring and policy management application software spanning campus, branch and data centre networks.
HP Technology Services help customers evolve and operate complex data centre networks to reallocate resources to innovation and business growth.

New services include:
* HP Connectivity Transformation Experience Workshop helps customers achieve network scale and agility with a defined strategy for network transformation that aligns business and IT goals.
* HP IPv6 Roadmap Service provides access to experienced consultants to develop a transition roadmap to IPv6 by considering all six of the domains affected by this transition—the network, security, infrastructure, applications, governance and finance.
* HP Datacentre Care for Networking offers a single point of contact for reactive support and proactive services that enable customers to quickly resolve network issues, evolve the network to meet changing business needs and reduce IT administrative tasks, allowing them to focus on technology innovation.

Pricing and availability:
* HP FlexFabric Virtual Switch 5900v is expected to be available worldwide in October 2013;
* HP FlexFabric 5900 switch series is now available worldwide;
* HP Virtualised Services Router series is expected to be available worldwide in the second half of 2013;
* HP FlexFabric 12900 switches are expected to be available worldwide in October 2013;
* HP FlexFabric 11908 switch is now available Worldwide;
* HP HSR 6800 router series is now available worldwide ;
* HP IMC Virtual Application Network Resource Automation Manager is expected to be available worldwide in December 2013; and
* HP IMC SDN Manager is expected to be available worldwide in December 2013.