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Cisco Crosswork Optimization Engine Data Sheet

Data Sheet

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Updated:February 23, 2022

Bias-Free Language

The documentation set for this product strives to use bias-free language. For the purposes of this documentation set, bias-free is defined as language that does not imply discrimination based on age, disability, gender, racial identity, ethnic identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and intersectionality. Exceptions may be present in the documentation due to language that is hardcoded in the user interfaces of the product software, language used based on RFP documentation, or language that is used by a referenced third-party product. Learn more about how Cisco is using Inclusive Language.

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Updated:February 23, 2022
 

 

Cisco CrossworkOptimization Engine provides real-time network optimization capabilities that allow operators to effectively maximize network utility as well as increase service velocity using real-time traffic engineering and proactive optimization.

Network operators are facing challenges to support the exponential growth of network traffic while addressing the pressure to efficiently run network operations. Providing quick service and network resolutions is vital for the business to remain viable. Network operators need a toolset to help automate bandwidth optimization and steer traffic efficiently with minimal operator intervention.

Figure of network development lifecycle with related actions for each phase

Figure 1.               

Figure of network development lifecycle with related actions for each phase

In a typical network development lifecycle, there is always a feedback loop that is traditionally done manually through human intervention. With network automation, the objective is to automate the feedback loop to enable quicker reaction to network events and faster determination on actions to perform on the network, while preserving operator intent in the network.

Looking at the network operation lifecycle above, Crosswork Optimization Engine is built to fulfill the need for a closed-loop optimization cycle as described under “Near Real-Time Feedback Loop.” Through Crosswork Optimization Engine, the operator would be able to define the optimization intent, implement the intent, and continuously monitor, track, and react to maintain the original intent.

Crosswork Optimization Engine at a glance

Figure 2.               

Crosswork Optimization Engine at a glance

Features and benefits

Feature

Benefit

Topology auto-discovery

Based on IETF-standard BGP-LS to automatically discover IP topology across multiple vendors.

Closed-loop feedback

Leveraging real-time protocols such as BGP-LS and PCEP, Crosswork Optimization Engine enables closed-loop tracking of network state, reacting quickly to changes in the network conditions. Enabling closed-loop automation to enable a self-healing network

Dynamic SLA management

Industry-proven Segment Routing optimized algorithm to manage SLA objectives dynamically based on defined intent.

Real-time visualization

Enables real-time visibility of the network, constantly in sync with the current state to provide true representation of the underlying infrastructure.

SRv6 and FlexAlgo discovery and visualization

Discovery and visualization SRv6 network, and of FlexAlgo device participation, elected definitions including metric type, include/exclude affinities, advertisement, and priority.

SR policy lifecycle management

Simple-to-use GUI to drive CRUD operation of Segment Routing Traffic Engineering (SR-TE) policy

RSVP-TE tunnel lifecycle management

Simple-to-use GUI to drive CRUD operations of RSVP-TE tunnel

API framework

Open and programmable that enables you to develop your own applications based on predefined API

Feature pack

Enables field-developed applications to support additional bandwidth management–related use cases

Real-time, multivendor visibility

End-to-end visibility is important to any network operator to run their network effectively. Crosswork Optimization Engine provides not only this visibility, but also the ability to visualize the network across different layers (L2 adjacencies and L3 IP topology) and the relationship between each layer.

Crosswork Optimization Engine leverages IETF-standard BGP-LS protocol to discover IP networks automatically, with features such as:

     Up-to-date visibility: Maintains real-time, up-to-date visibility of the network infrastructure, which provides the network operator with true representation of the actual topology

     Hierarchical view: Provides a hierarchical view of the topology, which enables operators to define the different levels of granularity in the topology visualization

     Visualization of both SR-MPLS and SRv6 networks

Policy Details Page in Crosswork Optimization Engine

Figure 3.               

Policy Details Page in Crosswork Optimization Engine

SRv6 visualization:

SRv6 Policy Details Page in Crosswork Optimization Engine

Figure 4.               

SRv6 Policy Details Page in Crosswork Optimization Engine

FlexAlgo visualization:

Example of two FlexAlgos displayed in the Crosswork Optimization Engine GUI

Figure 5.               

Example of two FlexAlgos displayed in the Crosswork Optimization Engine GUI

Simplified workflow for SR -TE policy and RSVP-TE tunnel lifecycle management

Crosswork Optimization Engine also provides an easy-to-use UI to manage the SR-TE policy and RSVP-TE tunnel lifecycle. The UI enables the network operator to:

1.     Create, modify, and remove SR-TE policies or RSVP-TE tunnels using an intuitive workflow

2.     Continuously track SR-TE policies and RSVP-TE tunnels dynamic path computations to maintain SLA objectives

3.     Preview an SRTE policy or RSVP-TE tunnel before deploying it to the network

SR Policy Provisioning screen in Crosswork Optimization Engine

Figure 6.               

SR Policy Provisioning screen in Crosswork Optimization Engine

Details to enter to provision a new RSVP-TE tunnel from the Crosswork Optimization Engine GUI

Figure 7.               

Details to enter to provision a new RSVP-TE tunnel from the Crosswork Optimization Engine GUI

Bandwidth management feature packs:

The Crosswork Optimization Engine feature packs allow users to augment their traffic engineering operations and include bandwidth use cases or preserve bandwidth as an intent in the network. With Crosswork Optimization Engine 3.0, the following bandwidth management capabilities with feature packs are offered:

1.     Bandwidth on Demand:

As the name suggests, Bandwidth on Demand allows an operator/user to provision a Segment Routing Traffic Engineering (SR-TE)–based policy with a requested bandwidth between a specific set of devices. It is a soft bandwidth guarantee and can include a secondary optimization objective such as latency/TE/IGP.

2.     Bandwidth Optimization:

This feature aims at tackling congestion in the network due to high traffic or link failure or any other reason by routing traffic within a network away from congestion and toward additional capacity or resources. It helps increase network utilization and thus lower capacity costs over a period of time.

3.     Local Congestion Mitigation:

Local Congestion Mitigation resolves congestion issues at the local interface level. This is done by rerouting traffic via tactical SR-TE policies only between devices on either side of the congested link. This way, the mitigation is localized to the congested interface and the end-to-end policy is not rerouted. This feature allows for operators to regain some control of the network by introducing a human in the loop. Upon congestion detection, mitigation recommendations are provided to the user and applied to the network only upon user confirmation. It can also be used as a monitoring tool to understand long-term congestion and failure patterns in the network, which will enable operators to augment capacity or perform maintenance in the identified parts of the network.

Talk to your Cisco Account Representative to see if these feature packs are right for your network.

Protocol support

Table 1.           Standard protocol support: Key protocols

Protocol

Title

RFC 5440

Path Computation Element (PCE) Communication Protocol (PCEP)

RFC 8231

Path Computation Element Communication Protocol (PCEP) Extensions for Stateful PCE

RFC 8281

Path Computation Element Communication Protocol (PCEP) Extensions for PCE-Initiated LSP Setup in a Stateful PCE Model

RFC 3209

RSVP-TE: Extensions to RSVP for LSP Tunnels

RFC 3630

Traffic Engineering Extensions to OSPF Version 2

RFC 3784

(IS-IS) Extensions for Traffic Engineering (TE)

RFC 7752

North-Bound Distribution of Link-State and Traffic Engineering (TE)

Please reach out to your Cisco account representative for more information.

Licensing

Cisco Crosswork Optimization Engine has a SMART-enabled software subscription license. For more information, contact your Cisco account representative.

System requirements: Crosswork Optimization Engine in a cluster

There are two options for COE 3.0 installation – via vCenter and on a CSP device. Please see rows 1 and 2 for system requirements for both options

Hypervisor and vCenter

  VMware vSphere 6.7 or later.
  VMware vCenter Server 7.0 and ESXi 7.0.
  VMware vCenter Server 6.7 (Update 3g or later) and ESXi 6.7 (Update 1).

Installation should be done from the Crosswork Installer

CSP DC requirements*

  Cisco CSP, Release 2.8.0.276

Allowed hardware list:

  UCSC-C220-M4S, UCSC-C240-M4SX
  N1K-1110-X, N1K-1110-S
  CSP-2100, CSP-2100-UCSD, CSP-2100-X1, CSP-2100-X2 CSP-5200, CSP-5216, CSP-5228
  CSP-5400, CSP-5436, CSP-5444, CSP-5456

CPU/memory/storage profiles (per VM)

The data center host platform has to accommodate 3 VMs of the following minimum configuration. It is preferrable that the VMs are hosted on separate physical servers for diversity:

vCenter:

  Small: 8 vCPUs | 48 GB RAM Memory| 1 TB disk space
  Large: 12 vCPUs | 96 GB RAM Memory | 1 TB disk space

CSP:

  Small: 8 CPU cores | 48 GB RAM Memory| 1 TB disk space
  Large: 12 CPU cores | 96 GB RAM Memory | 1 TB disk space

Note: The install allows VM Memory and CPU sizes to be adjusted, and re-adjusted post installation.

Storage requirements vary based on factors such as the number of devices being supported and the type of deployment selected. Due to their performance, solid state drives (SSD) are preferred over traditional hard disk drives (HDD). If you are using HDD, the minimum speed should be over 10,000 RPM.

The VM data store(s) need to have disk access latency of <50 ms. SSD or high-performance disks are recommended.

  By default, enforcing a “hard” reservation for the VM’s resources, the requirement will be 12vCPUs, 100% memory (i.e., 96 Gb for Large) and a revised 18 GHz reservation per VM, up from the previous default of 24 Gb and 16 GHz.

Additional storage

10 GB (approximately) of storage is required for the Crosswork OVA (in vCenter), OR the Crosswork QCOW2 image on each CSP node (in CSP).

Network connections

For production deployments, we recommend that you use dual interfaces, one for the Management network and one for the Data network.

When the VMs are deployed on separate physical hosts, the network connectivity between the hosts needs to be a minimum of 10 Gbps.

IP addresses

  2 IP subnets for the Management and Data network with each allowing a minimum of 4 assignable IP addresses (IPv4 or IPv6). Each Crosswork VM requires an IP address from the Management and Data subnets, respectively. In addition, the installation as a whole requires one Virtual IP (VIP) address from the Management and Data subnets, respectively. The total number of IP addresses on each subnet is 4, making for a total of 8 IP addresses across the two subnets.
  Note: When deploying a IPv6 cluster, the installer needs to run on an IPv6-enabled container/VM.
  Note: At this time, your IP allocation is permanent and cannot be changed without redeployment. For more information, contact your Cisco Customer Experience team.
  Dual-stack configuration is not supported in Crosswork Platform Infrastructure. Therefore, all addresses for the environment must be either IPv4 or IPv6. Do not attempt to configure both in a single interface.

Upgrade requirements

Upgrade of a Crosswork cluster of ‘N’ UCS or CSP nodes will require ‘N+1’ UCS or CSP nodes for the OVA upgrade. For example, in a cluster of 3 ‘nodes,’ an additional node will be needed for the upgrade, bringing the total to 4 ‘nodes’ or UCS/CSPs.

The additional node is just temporary for the duration of the upgrade to facilitate the upgrade. Post upgrade, a cluster of N nodes will continue with the same number of nodes/resources.

*Please contact your local account team or Customer Experience team before deploying the CSP option.

System requirements: Crosswork Data Gateway

Hypervisor and vCenter

  VMware vSphere 6.7 or later.
  VMware vCenter Server 7.0 and ESXi 7.0.
  VMware vCenter Server 6.7 (Update 3g or later) and ESXi 6.7 (Update 1).

Note: Installation should be done only from vCenter.

CSP DC requirements*

  Cisco CSP, Release 2.8.0.276

Allowed hardware list:

  UCSC-C220-M4S, UCSC-C240-M4SX
  N1K-1110-X, N1K-1110-S
  CSP-2100, CSP-2100-UCSD, CSP-2100-X1, CSP-2100-X2 CSP-5200, CSP-5216, CSP-5228
  CSP-5400, CSP-5436, CSP-5444, CSP-5456

Memory

  Standard: 32 GB
  Extended: 96 GB

Disk space

  Standard: 55 GB (minimum)
  Extended: 550 GB (minimum)

CPU

  Standard: 8
  Extended: 16

Interfaces

  Minimum: 1
  Maximum: 3

Crosswork Data Gateway can be deployed with either 1, 2, or 3 interfaces as per the combinations below:

Note: The installation process asks only for vNIC0 and vNIC1 IP. vNIC2 IP is assigned during Crosswork Data Gateway pool creation as explained in the section “Create/Edit a Crosswork Data Gateway Pool” in your Crosswork application's Administration Guide.

No. of NICs

vNIC0

vNIC1

vNIC2

1

  Management Traffic
  Control/Data Traffic
  Device Access Traffic

-

-

2

  Management Traffic
  Control/Data Traffic
  Device Access Traffic

-

3

  Management Traffic
  Control/Data Traffic
  Device Access Traffic

Management traffic: For accessing the UIs and command line and passing Control/Data information between servers (for example, a Crosswork application to Crosswork Data Gateway or NSO).

Control/Data traffic: For data and configuration transfer between Crosswork Data Gateway and Crosswork applications and other external data destinations.

Device access traffic: For device management (NSO or a Crosswork application to the devices as a result of KPI configuration or playbook execution) and telemetry data being forwarded to the Crosswork Data Gateway.

When the VMs are deployed on separate physical hosts, the network connectivity between the hosts needs to be a minimum of 10 Gbps.

IP addresses

1, 2, or 3 IPv4/IPv6 addresses based on the number of interfaces you choose to use.

Note: Crosswork does not support dual-stack configurations. Therefore, ALL addresses for the environment must be either IPv4 or IPv6.

*Please contact your local account team or Customer Experience team before deploying the CSP option.

Ordering Information

Please contact your Cisco account representative for details regarding ordering Cisco Crosswork Optimization Engine.

Cisco and Partner Services

Cisco offers a wide range of services to help accelerate your success in connecting to Cisco Crosswork. The innovative Cisco Services offerings are delivered through a unique combination of people, processes, tools, and partners and are focused on helping you increase operational efficiency and improve your network control. Cisco Advanced Services use an architecture-led approach to help you align your network infrastructure with your business goals and achieve long-term value. Cisco Crosswork products can be combined with the Cisco SMARTnet service to help you resolve mission-critical problems with direct access at any time to Cisco network experts and award-winning resources. Spanning the entire network lifecycle, Cisco Services offerings help increase investment protection, optimize network operations, support migration operations, and strengthen your IT expertise. For more information, please visit www.cisco.com/go/services.

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Document history

Table 2.           Document history

New or Revised Topic

Described In

Date

Updated Features and Benefits

Page 4

January 2022

 

 

 

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