[c-nsp] Cisco NCS VxLAN Experience

Sigurbjörn Birkir Lárusson sigurbjornl at vodafone.is
Fri Jan 10 06:09:01 EST 2020

    On 9/Jan/20 20:19, Gert Doering wrote:
    >> 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.

On 10/01/2020, 08:51, Mark wrote:  
    >I couldn't agree more.
    >Some use-cases are unique, but by and large, the Internet is the
    >Internet, and creating distinct commercial lines so you can re-sell the
    >same products and services several times over is not going to work anymore.
    >The only area where costs aren't reducing is in vendor equipment and
    >services. The pressure on revenue from Internet services of any kind are
    >very high, and getting even higher. Customers have grown accustomed to
    >expecting all services for free, or close to free, and the companies
    >providing those service have taken the bait, putting a strain on each
    >other in the same industry and creating a race to the bottom.
    >Equipment vendors can't keep charging network operators like it was back
    >in the day. If they continue to do so, we will walk. Simple.
 Completely agree with both of you.  We've been trying to make this case with Cisco for many years. 

Additionally The NCS line, both the DC and SP products, are based on Broadcom chipsets which are heavily limited in their capabilities, particularly egress TCAM capabilities are limited in such a way that it makes it almost unusable in a service-provider environment.  Add to that the pain of having to deal with lack of feature parity between the platforms, and even releasing platforms for the service provider environment which out of the box don't support essential services (the NCS 520 springs to mind, a Service Provider NID that doesn't support Clocking or IGMP snooping).  

The mixture of IOS XE and XR is also highly annoying, XE at this point is an enterprise operating system and the End-of-life of the 15.5S series spells the end for service provider use of IOS XE in my mind, where the 920 lines goes after that is a big question mark, our experience with IOS XE 16 (16.3/16.6 and 16.9) is that it's a largely unusable blob of crap.

We've been trying to raise these points with Cisco for a while, but I have a feeling they mostly don't care about the SP market at this stage and are focused on the more lucrative "cloud" and enterprise markets

Kind regards,

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