Cisco Systems® announces its new Application-Oriented Network (AON) technology. Cisco Application Oriented Network technology (AON) is the foundation for a new class of network-embedded products and solutions that help converge intelligent networks with application infrastructure based on either service oriented or traditional architectures. Cisco AON technology allows application message-level intelligence into the network to better meet the underlying needs of applications for real-time visibility, security, event-based messaging, optimized delivery, and other core integration and deployment services.
Cisco AON natively understands the content and context of application messages, such as purchase orders or stock trades, and conducts operations on those messages in transit according to business policies. Cisco AON technology delivers this breakthrough level of application intelligence to extend the Cisco vision for a more intelligent network for application services technologies and offer an unsurpassed level of insight for real-time business decision making.
Cisco AON technology complements existing networking and application technologies by providing a set of enhanced visibility, security, messaging, and optimization services that help both IT and business users obtain a greater degree of awareness regarding information flowing within the network. These services help to:
• Enable disparate applications to communicate by routing application messages to the appropriate destination, in the format expected by that destination
• Enforce consistent security policies for application access and information exchange
• Provide visibility of information flow, including the monitoring and filtering of messages for both business and infrastructure purposes
• Enhance application optimization by providing application-level load balancing, offloading security and Extensible Markup Language (XML) operations, and offering caching and compression services at the application message level
Cisco AON provides this enhanced and adaptive level of application intelligence primarily by working at the message level rather than at the packet level. Typically, Cisco AON inspects the full message, including the content as well as all headers. Cisco AON also understands and enhances the delivery of popular application-level protocols such as HTTP, Java Messaging Service (JMS), and other standards.
Cisco AON is currently available in two products that integrate into Cisco switches and routers:
• Cisco Catalyst® 6500 Series AON module, which is primarily deployed in an enterprise core or in data centers
• Cisco 2600/2800/3700/3800 series AON module, which is primarily deployed at branch offices
In addition, the following tools are available to manage and configure Cisco AON:
• Cisco AON Development Studio (ADS)-Cisco ADS is used to create Policy Execution Plans, which represent a set of operations ("bladelets") applied to application messages
• Cisco AON Management Console (AMC)-Cisco AMC provides centralized control for configuration, certificate management, and lifecycle management of a distributed Cisco AON network
Table 1 indicates which hardware and software are compatible with Cisco AON.
Table 1. Cisco AON Hardware and Software Compatibility