Cisco, VMware want Aussie testers

Cisco Systems this week said it was looking for Australian customers to trial the beta version of the Nexus 1000V distributed virtual software switch which it developed with VMware and announced earlier today.

Cisco Systems this week said it was looking for Australian customers to trial the beta version of the Nexus 1000V distributed virtual software switch which it developed with VMware and announced earlier today.

Cisco's Networkers conference
has taken over Brisbane
this week.

(Credit: Suzanne Tindal/ZDNet.com.au)

"Now that this is announced we'll be welcoming beta customers in Australia," Pete Nicholls, Cisco business development manager datacentre Asia Pacific said at a media briefing during Cisco Networkers 2008 in Brisbane this week.

Ideally any customers testing the beta would already be VMware and Cisco customers, Nicholls told ZDNet.com.au, adding that customers testing the beta was a good way to rapidly grow the local awareness and skills base.

Global customers have already begun trialling the new switch, created via the companies' new-found closeness after Cisco spent US$150 million in July to buy 1.6 per cent of VMware. However, until now, Australian customers had not been invited into the fray.

The switch is a Cisco Nexus switch in the form of software embedded in the VMware hypervisor. According to the company, the new switch allows network features such as security, policy enforcement, automated provision and diagnostics features onto virtual machines as if they were physical machines.

It allows IT managers to manage lots of servers with multiple virtual machines as one big network and not as separate environments, Dylan Morison, Cisco datacentre leader for Australia New Zealand said today.

When customers acquire the VMware software, the switch is an embedded option which can be switched on. The customer only requires a device controller which can be purchased through normal Cisco channels, he said.

The Cisco Nexus 1000V distributed virtual software was scheduled to be available to customers in the first half of 2009.

Cisco will be proposing the VN-Link technology on the Nexus 1000V to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers as a standard. If successful, this will open the field to other hypervisors.

"I'd be quite interested to see how quickly we might see other similar type arrangements," Nicholls said. "We don't expect it to be unique in the long term."

Suzanne Tindal travelled to Brisbane as a guest of Cisco Systems.