Cisco wants to monitor everything in your data center, launches Tetration Analytics

Cisco adds an analytics platform to its data center lineup. The appliance is designed for everything from application insights to forensics to policy management and modeling.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Cisco is launching an analytics system dubbed Tetration Analytics to track data centers, servers and networking gear via sensors and then provide insights to better manage infrastructure.

Tetration for now is an appliance based system that would serve as an analytics cluster. Data center operational data would be delivered via APIs, a web interface and push notifications.

Ultimately, Tetration Analytics will be delivered as a service, said Yogesh Kaushik, senior director of product management at Cisco. Pricing of the system is to be announced, but will be in the $3 million ballpark, said Kaushik.

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"We will monitor everything in the data center," said Kaushik, who noted that it's harder to understand performance blind spots given developments such as hybrid cloud, rapid app deployments, big data, public clouds and microservices.

For Cisco, Tetration could be a differentiator for its data center stack. Cisco started with its Unified Computing Systems and later added ACI, which is its software defined data center entry. Tetration provides an analytics layer that's designed to serve as a "time machine" to see exactly what hurt data center performance.


In addition to replaying events in real time Tetration will be able to model data center changes so enterprises can see consequences.

Tetration Analytics will focus on application insights, policy assessments, automated whitelisting, forensics and compliance. The platform consists of Tetration analytics software, UCS C220 servers and Nexus 9300 switches in a rack.

According to Cisco, Tetration will scale out to billions of records a day. Cisco's latest hardware will have sensors built in, but Tetration will be able to monitor third party gear as well as reach applications via agents.

Cisco said its rack appliance can be up and running in about three hours. Cisco is evaluating a software only option and its beta customers used Tetration Analytics based on the appliance. Customers primarily wanted a hardware option and appliance was the preferred model, added Kaushik.


Once launched, Cisco intends to extend Tetration with an ecosystem of software providers as well as partners. Tetration is aimed at multiple verticals, but regulated industries are primarily interested in the forensics capabilities.

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