Cisco Open Network Environment

The Cisco Open Network Environment is an evolutionary, customizable framework to help maximize the value of the intelligent network. With a choice of protocols, industry standards, and use-case-based deployment models, it allows you to increase your infrastructure agility, simplify operations, and instill greater application visibility and awareness.

Cisco's approach complements traditional approaches to software defined networking:

  • Take advantage of network intelligence with deep full-duplex programmatic access to Cisco devices and software
  • Explore emerging technologies through joint partnerships with industry, academia, and standards bodies
  • Build scalable, multi-tenant cloud infrastructures with consistent operations between physical and virtual environments

The Cisco Open Network Environment is delivered through a variety of mechanisms, including platform APIs, agents and controllers, and virtual overlay solutions. As a result, you gain the flexibility to choose the combination of technologies that best suits your needs. These flexible deployment options offer consistency across both physical and virtual environments, hardware and software technologies, and network and compute resources.

Cisco is delivering the Open Network Environment through a number of innovations:

  • onePK, a comprehensive developer kit with a rich set of platform APIs across Cisco IOS, IOS-XR, and NX-OS Software
  • Proof-of-concept controllers and SDN/OpenFlow agents for research purposes
  • Overlay network solutions that include the Cisco Nexus 1000v for scalable, multi-tenant cloud deployments

The Open Network Environment framework spans the entire network stack, from physical transport all the way up to automation and orchestration functions, and then exposes these functions in a highly granular manner.

This multi-dimensional view of the network exposes a much richer environment for developers. It gives them a greater range of control and allows them to access network intelligence in a more finely calibrated manner. With the Open Network Environment, developers can create multi-dimensional, continuous full-duplex feedback loops that link network infrastructure with applications like analytics engines and policy engines. The result is much more sophisticated interaction between applications and infrastructure.

Beyond building on Cisco innovation, the Open Network Environment also draws on industry standards work underway. Cisco is active in the development of OpenFlow with the Open Networking Foundation as well as the development of various elements in OpenStack such as the Quatum networking API. Cisco is also involved in the more established standards organizations such as IEEE, IETF, and ITU as they turn their attention to SDN.

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