Planning Your Network for the Software-Defined Data Center

If you've played a game on PC lately, you know one of the biggest questions to ask is: “will this work on my PC?” Every PC game has a list of system requirements that must be fulfilled before the game will actually work on that system. In a way, a software-defined data center isn't much different; it has a certain roster of requirements, though not quite so cut-and-dried as a PC game's list. There's a lot to consider, so here's a look at what you should keep in mind when planning a network for a software-defined data center.

Software-Defined Data Centers Require a Complex and Powerful Network

A software-defined data center needs the right kind of capability to run.

Performance. The network needs to have sufficient capacity to run the most powerful application it will have on hand, and then some. After all, the network will likely never run just one application at a time, so building in excess capacity will be a smart plan.

Scalability. Since the software-defined data center will run a range of different applications, it needs not only the right power to run them, but the ability to adjust its bandwidth availability to suit the project on hand.

Expansion capability. When new applications come into play, the network needs to be ready for these, though not necessarily immediately. The network needs to be easy to provision, and can readily add new computing and storage resources according to needs on the ground.

Container support. Your network must be able to handle containers to get the most out of a software-defined data center. Since containers allow for micro-services-based architecture, and better allow for migration between the local and cloud-based platform, being able to handle containers will be vital going forward.

Integration support. The software-defined data center network is somewhat limited right now in its ability to support various elements of data center software. Storage virtualization, security, and other elements don't always fit in. Some of the currently-available solutions are proprietary and don't always play well with others. Understanding this going in will be key to future developments.

When You're Ready for a Software-Defined Data Center

Moving toward a software-defined data center requires a clear understanding of where your network is now in relation to where it needs to be. Make it simpler—and easier on yourself—by getting in touch with us at Emcon IT. We offer a range of data center services, including complete data center relocation, so helping you build the kind of network you'll need to improve your business.