by August 5, 2013 0 comments


What are the expected developments in the field of software-defined networking in 2013?

Bhavin Barbhaya: The networking industry has evolved a lot over the last 20 years. SDN will change the dynamics of the networking landscape. In future, there will be less hardware and more of software. The control will be through software and hardware will become dumb.

What are the challenges faced by SMBs before they migrate completely to IPv6?

Bhavin Barbhaya: For IPv6, the service provider’s migration is necessary in the first place. Gateways will be used for translating between IPv4 and IPv6. However, the total cost to a business will be very high because a lot of hardware will need to be replaced. In my opinion, SMBs will migrate in phases and not in one go.When is the available pool of IPv4 addresses expected to get depleted in regional registries and how will it affect SMBs?

Rahul Arora: By the end of this year we should begin to see some indications. You also need to consider RBI’s guidelines about the use of IPv4 in the BFSI sector. This will definitely affect SMBs.

How do you see the progress of native IPv6 adoption in SMBs in India?

Rahul Arora: Regulatory signals for BFSI are awaited. That being said, the adoption has been slow, but for SMBs the move towards IPv6 should be easier, as they would have a network infrastructure that is less complex.

In your recently released `State of the Internet (SOTI)’ report for the fourth quarter of 2012, you termed broadband as a connection that has a minimum throughput of 4 Mbps. Do you think it is time the TRAI changed its definition of broadband?



Rahul Arora: I do think that the definition for what defines broadband needs to change. In India, faster adoption of broadband in tier-2 and tier-3 cities will drive the growth. LTE will also see increasing adoption.

What is SDN’s impact on purchase decisions of networking equipment?

Mrinmoy Purkayastha: SDN impacts the network predominantly in moving customers from proprietary hardware to commodity hardware that can be used for switching. Customers are looking at reducing hardware purchases and SDN controllers are designed to work with both legacy/existing hardware as well as new hardware. Standard APIs like OpenFlow are being utilized.

How has been SDN’s uptake in SMBs?

Mrinmoy Purkayastha: Not much in India yet. But in certain parts of the world, the service providers/network operators are rolling out special services (VAS) to SMBs in terms of bundled offerings.

Can you share some reasons why would you bet on NFV (network function virtualization) in India?

Mrinmoy Purkayastha: a) In the SMB context, it will enable a lot of new value-added services being offered by the service provider directly, without the SMB having to break their heads with network administration/design, etc.
b) With large enterprises/telecom operators, SDN gives the capability for you to scale your network using commodity hardware, without having to buy expensive proprietary hardware. I think that is what is finding a lot of appeal with customers worldwide. CAPEX is reduced and also to some extent OPEX.

What about skill sets that developers need to acquire given the rise of this trend?

Mrinmoy Purkayastha: There are a certain set of people who develop networking products. Historically speaking, these are people who had skill sets in the data plane, the control plane and specialized network processors. Now, a lot of this, especially the data plane, is going to be based on standard hardware while the control plane is moving to a virtualized environment. So one new skill set to learn is how to instantiate and manage (orchestration capabilities) of virtual appliances. One of the common ones, which many people are deploying today, is OpenStack. Knowledge of specialized network processors is going to be in less demand in future because we will be working with commonly seen hardware such as the x86 platform.


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