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Author Topic: SDN vs SPB - A fair comparison?  (Read 3159 times)

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Offline pat2012

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SDN vs SPB - A fair comparison?
« on: June 06, 2014, 09:08:19 PM »
Hi guys.

As you can see, the industry seems to be all "gaga" over SDN.  There is just so much talk these days about the benefits of SDN and how it will change networking forever - just like how VMs have changed the data centre.

Even some "experts" are confused over what exactly is SDN as the term is constantly being abused.  What does that leave for us mere mortals?

My simple question is this.  Is it fair to compare SDN with SPB?  Are they intended to solve similar problems?  I have a (very) basic understanding of SPB, but my understanding of SDN is limited to the hype I've been reading.

What makes it more confusing for me is the fact that Avaya also has an SDN strategy - although it is not well known if you look at the industry surveys.

And of course Cis(cough!) just launched their ACI that has the industry all excited.  Proprietary of course.

SPB continues to prove itself (Sochi, Interop backbone, etc.), yet it struggles to gain industry acceptance/penetration - even though it is an industry standard with demonstrated interoperability .  How strange?

I'd appreciate your thoughts.


Offline Dominik

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Re: SDN vs SPB - A fair comparison?
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2014, 05:01:33 AM »
As you already said,  everybody or at least every vendor has a different understanding what SDN means.
Here it really depends what you want to achieve.
SPB can bring automation to your network,  if that is what you want I would say SPB can part of your SDN strategy.
What you can do today for example with Avaya SPB implementation is automated server deployment with OPENSTACK or
VMware. In the moment a new server is deployed automated the network is configured. This is a real benefit of SPB in my opinion,  you only need to configure the access switch to that a server is connected,  in classic networks you always had the problem that you have to configure all up links in your network,  so an automation would have to configure multiple devices and uplinks ,  which made it very hard to deploy and complex. With SPB you only need to bind a local vlan to an isid and you are done.  How the traffic goes across your network is handled by SPB.

If you want something like ftptraffic and httptraffic from server A takes a complete different path across your network
From the same host IP,  SPB will not be part of your SDN strategy.

It all depends on your needs...
« Last Edit: June 07, 2014, 05:03:27 AM by Dominik »
Itīs always the networks fault!

Offline Flintstone

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Re: SDN vs SPB - A fair comparison?
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2014, 04:32:31 AM »
Hi pat2012,

As far as I understand it SDN is where the control plane is centralized I.e. Routing, STP and in theory SPB, so that basically all the Network devices are just data planes I.e. just move data from one port to another, after direction from the control plane.

SPB IMHO is just an alternative for STP, but a very clever alternative?