The need for businesses to enhance the efficiency of IT and increase application agility is overwhelming. Embracing operational models such as cloud computing helps, but in order to fully leverage these new models companies must explore new ways of handling network connectivity. Network virtualization solutions such as VMware NSX provide an answer for the new cloud-centric networking models. As with any technology, though, network virtualization doesn’t solve some existing challenges by itself: consistent, efficient performance for business-critical applications that span virtual and physical worlds; correlated and integrated management; and enhancing data sharing between the network virtualization solution and the underlying physical network are all critical elements to successful cloud deployments. To address these challenges, we are pleased to announce that Juniper and VMware are expanding our partnership to help our joint customers achieve better application agility for their cloud environments.

When it came to helping our joint customers make the move to virtualized environments, expanding Juniper Networks’ longstanding relationship with VMware was a no-brainer.  VMware NSX brings powerful networking capabilities to today’s data centers. For VMware, the move was equally obvious, since Juniper delivers the industry’s only universal software-defined networking (SDN) gateway that addresses heterogeneous intra- and inter-data center environments for helping customers seamlessly adopt SDN and NSX without replacing their existing network infrastructure.

As part of this expanded partnership, both companies will commit engineering resources to jointly develop network virtualization solutions, build collaborative engineering teams in three key areas that will need co-development.

First, expanding the integration of our management tools such as VMware vCenter and Juniper Junos Space so our customers will be able to easily share data across both physical and virtual networks for dynamic threshold detection, trending analysis, root cause detection and automated workload placement. By intelligently sharing the right data via standards based APIs, we offer our customers a “single pane of glass” visibility for the underlay and overlay topologies, thereby simplifying troubleshooting and making managing the datacenter much more efficient.

Second, uniting switching and routing across physical and virtual networks to enable NSX and non-NSX-controlled resources to connect with Juniper Networks’ high-performance, programmable routers and switches acting as gateways between physical and virtual networks.  Juniper will also deliver VXLAN virtual tunnel endpoint (VTEP) technology across its routing and switching platforms, delivering an integrated approach for routing traffic across physical and virtual networks on a per-flow, per-application basis to ensure the best possible performance for every application. This technology allows a customer that is considering network virtualization to confidently integrate this new technology with its existing infrastructure – enabling an easier migration and the ability to seamlessly connect the old and the new.

Third, by sharing analytics and telemetry data, together we will provide correlated historical information as well as the ability to proactively detect and fix anomalies and errors without human intervention. Consider the benefit of automated network optimization for “Elephant and Mice” flows or for the ability to provide end-to-end Quality of Service (QoS) for prioritized traffic that originates at the hypervisor.

But that’s only part of the story.  There is plenty more to the relationship than we don’t have room to share in this short blog.  Here is a link to the video from the recently concluded Interop event where Pat Gelsinger, VMware CEO references the collaboration with Juniper. For additional background on the Juniper-VMware relationship and the benefits it brings to our joint customers, watch this video featuring Juniper Networks EVP Rami Rahim and VMware SVP Stephen Mullaney discussing the opportunities and challenges of network virtualization and how Juniper and VMware are working together to help customers on their journey.

Hatem Naguib, Vice President, Networking and Security, VMware

Denise Shiffman, VP Product Management & Strategy, Juniper