< back to overview

Software-Defined – It’s Everywhere

Jul 26, 2016

The era of software defined everything is here. Bithika Khargharia discusses the top three technologies utilizing the software approach.

Software defined everything (SDE) – virtualized computing infrastructure delivered as a service – is taking over. Hardware components that used to be manually controlled are now being automated by intelligent software, reducing complexity and increasing cost savings. The top three terms that have gained the most buzz in this movement are software defined networking (SDN), software defined data center (SDDC) and software defined storage (SDS), and for good reason.  All of these terms, which fall under the umbrella of information and communications technology (ICT), are more agile and programmable, as they are software based. SDE will bring maximum flexibility across all ICT.

SDN

In a traditional network architecture, the data plane and control plane are coupled on the physical device; an architecture not particularly fit to meet the needs of today’s end users since it makes the network too static and limits network designers. SDN decouples the control and data planes, abstracts the underlying network infrastructure from the applications, and logically centralizes the state and intelligence of the network. With the explosion of mobile devices and content, server virtualization, and the advent of cloud services, it is clear why the industry is going software-defined in the network.

SDDC

In an SDDC, all technology components are virtualized and represented as a software function. The software-defined approach to data centers provides service agility and provisioning benefits and reduces energy consumption. Unlike hardware-driven data centers, where OpEx costs can run high, SDDCs lower costs through streamlining and automation. SDDCs make the data center more scalable and easier to manage.

SDS

Each time an organization buys traditional storage, they have to pay for the hardware and the associated proprietary management software. SDS separates the hardware from the software, creating flexibility and cost savings. In an SDS environment, resources of the pooled storage infrastructure can be automatically and efficiently allocated to match the application needs of an enterprise. Automating storage infrastructure with software provides better scalability, speed, and utilization.

It is more than clear that the era of SDE is here. The efficiency gains made possible by virtualization, open source software and hardware disaggregation first seen in data center compute now extend to and have been integrated with on-line storage, and networking infrastructure, enabling greater automation, faster provisioning, decreased costs, quicker implementation, and more overall efficiency. Software defined ICT only makes sense! The future has arrived, and it’s software-defined.

– Bithika Khargharia, Director of Product and Community Management