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SDN Seminars Jamming @ RSA

Mar 16, 2012
Sue Kim - gu
Sue Kim - gu About the author

During this year’s RSA Conference, SDNCentral in conjunction with Wiretap VenturesInCNTREThe Chasm Group and ACG Research, organized a series of SDN focused seminar sessions, and an evening event featuring SRI International. The two-day seminar was jamming with more than 100 people in attendance, including:

  • End user CTOs, CISOs and network architects from leading Wall Street banks and hedge funds looking for real SDN solutions
  • CTO and architects from the large networking companies
  • Senior product and market executives from major switching vendors
  • Leading east coast and west coast venture capitalist

Speakers during the seminar included Matt Davy, Chris Small, Paul Wiefels, Alan Boehme, Sarah Sorensen, Roy Chua and myself, all representatives of the presenting organizations. As many attendees for the sessions were investors wanting to learn where to invest in SDN, we were able to share snippets of the SDN market, use cases, product category sizing research we are completing, and where there are and are not opportunities for established and start-up companies given the go-to-market and customer buying dynamics. The seminar sessions were very tailored to the audience and focused on what the business executives & investors need to know about SDN & OpenFlow, including the real-world security implications of the technologies, as well as the insecurities of SDN’s and OpenFlow. During the evening event, Phil Porras of SRI International discussed the mitigation techniques from his organization. Here are some of the key take-aways from the sessions:

  • Network Virtualization and SDNs are real and here to stay, but it will take time for broad market adoption
  • The value capture and profits are shifting to control software and commodity silicon
  • Navigating the go-to-market and use order is critical for customer and vendor success
  • It’s time for customers to get started with test beds – look to integrators like Ironwall Systems for help
  • There is plenty of execution talent and opportunity for investors – but keep in mind there is significant scarcity in teams that understand the market and business drivers and dynamics
  • InCNTRE has current real-world examples, including running one of the few large-scale production SDN networks in the world
  • Today OpenFlow® is inherently insecure, but can be made secure. SRI is developing solutions to secure SDNs and OpenFlow® and is offering FortNOX and FRESCO security applications for free download to further encourage OpenFlow® security

The large attendance, leading presenters and key take-aways from the seminar truly show that network virtualization and SDNs are real and here to stay. While it may take time for broad market adoption, discussions and events like this are helping developers, system integrators, business customers, investors, and more to realize the value of such technologies. As we bring these folks together to work through and establish best practices, we are driving adoption of SDN within regulated industries.

A copy of Phil's presentation is available here: http://beta.sdncentral.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/20120228_SDN_Seminar_BOF_Phil_Porras.pdf (courtesy of Phil Porras and SRI International).

A copy of Sarah’s whitepaper, “Security Implication of Software-Defined Networks” is available here: http://www.sdncentral.com/register-acg-wp/ (courtesy of Sarah Sorenson and ACG Research)

– Matt Palmer

Matt Palmer is a partner at Wiretap Ventures, and advisor to C-level executives of public and private companies. Wiretap Ventures is a strategy and management consult agency focused on mobility, virtualization and cloud computing technologies.  He is also a partner at SDNCentral, the independent resource for anything about network virtualization and SDN.


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Sue Kim - gu