Boosting cloud integration, automation

Boosting cloud integration, automation

Pulsant is using Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure and F5 Device Package to give its customers greater choice and integration.

Choice and integration. That is what Pulsant’s customers are demanding. And it is exactly what the U.K.-based cloud, colocation, and managed services provider is delivering.

“Our customers are increasingly utilizing a hybrid combination of technologies and services, from on-premises and colocation data centers to managed and public clouds,” says Matt Lovell, CTO for Pulsant. “But they don’t want a collection of point solutions. They want end-to-end management, security, and analytics across all of these environments.”

With hardware, software, standards, and everything in between being different, data becomes the pivot point, he explains. And policy control surrounding that data is the only way to ensure consistency—of governance, security, and compliance—no matter where the workloads reside.

A powerful combination
Pulsant is utilizing the latest software-defined networking (SDN) technologies to integrate its colocation and cloud offerings and provide a higher level of service to its customers.

“We’re moving up the enterprise food chain by becoming more data and application centric,” Lovell says. “There are a lot of cloud providers, but not many can provide management down to each device or a single pane of glass across all enterprise applications.”

  • Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (Cisco ACI) and the F5 Device Package for Cisco® Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) have been key to Pulsant’s evolution in this arena.
  • The combination of technologies provides integration and automation from the core network to the application layer.

“The network is critical for how applications, services, and data are handled,” Lovell explains. “The combination of Cisco ACI and F5 Device Package provides visibility and policy control across L2 to L7 fabrics, and removes the boundaries between physical and virtual workloads.”

Simplicity + automation = speed
Pulsant’s new architecture provides intelligence and abstraction that simplify and automate complex tasks. That means much faster development and provisioning for Pulsant and its customers.

“It’s all about simplicity,” says Martin Lipka, head of connectivity architecture at Pulsant. “If the racks are set up and the cables are laid, I can configure a new data center in 10 minutes, and I can teach someone else to do it just as quickly.”

In the past, it would take Pulsant weeks to patch together different systems and services, handling security, protocols, and compliance on a case-by-case basis. Today, it takes just days, or even hours.

“Architecting a complex core network is difficult and time consuming, but the next-gen controllers do most of the heavy lifting,” says Lipka. “The APIC takes high-level instructions, breaks them down into little pieces, and delivers them to the ACI Fabric. It’s all automated.”

  • Pulsant isn’t just providing systems and service integration, but also end-to-end visibility, health monitoring, policy control, and security.
  • A new self-service portal will soon give Pulsant’s customers greater access to and control of their data—across multiple physical and virtual environments—for advanced analytics, reporting, and decision making.

“This is one of the most exciting times to be a networking specialist,” Lipka says. “We are in the midst of a revolution, and ACI is a revolutionary technology. After two days of testing, we could tell it would change and improve the way we run our business and serve our customers.”

“Business unlimited,” says Lovell. “That’s our vision, and we are delivering on the vision by creating new ecosystems of value for our customers—all backed by an integrated platform with consistent security, management, and policy control.”

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