[c-nsp] Cisco NCS VxLAN Experience

Gert Doering gert at greenie.muc.de
Thu Jan 9 13:19:09 EST 2020


On Thu, Jan 09, 2020 at 07:01:32PM +0100, Ted Pelas Johansson wrote:
> So you are saying that a vendor shouldn't have certain products for certain domains? I'm unsure what your reasons is to be honest.

Cisco has a zillion products that mainly differenciate in "which of
the advertised features are unusable or broken" and "what operating
system do we use this week?".

Ditching out half the products and using the engineering capacity 
freed by this might results in half the product families shipping
actually useful products.

I have some amount of understanding for "product <x> cannot do <y>,
because the hardware cannot do it".  Trade-offs need to be made, and
restrictions need to be clearly documented (before buying).

I do have *null* understanding for "we have cisco proprietary protocols
that our customers are actively using (HSRP, EIGRP) but we do not 
support this on <arbitrary product> because we can, buy something 
else!" (EIGRP on IOS XR on NCS5k, HSRPv2 with IPv6 on ASR920).

Or "yes, we can see that this <control plane feature> would be trivially 
to implement, but you can only have it if you buy the *same box* coloured 
differently" (static MPLS labels on 6500 vs. 7600 come to mind).

I only have very limited understanding for "for your set of requirements, 
we have four different products that all look the same, and possibly 
even share the same chipset, but because of BU differenciation, none 
of the products will do *all* you need - so if you need feature X, Y 
and Z, you need to buy from *two* of our nice BUs!".

In many real-world networks, there is no hard-cut differenciation between
"this part is 'datacenter', that part is 'enterprise' and the interconnects
are 'service-provide'".  We have it all, and we need to be able to support
it with reasonable effort.

Buying a pair of Nexus, a pair of ASR9k and possibly a pair of ASR1000
*per site* just because different Cisco BUs can't agree on how to interop
is just too annoying.  If I want non-interoperable gear with different
OSes and totally different bugs, I can just buy from a different vendor
instead (who might actually value our money).

"If was one thing all people took for granted, was conviction that if you 
 feed honest figures into a computer, honest figures come out. Never doubted 
 it myself till I met a computer with a sense of humor."
                             Robert A. Heinlein, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress

Gert Doering - Munich, Germany                             gert at greenie.muc.de
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