VMware originally built NSX on technology that gained via the $1.2 billion acquisition of Nicira in 2012. The core NSX technology provides network segmentation and software-defined networking (SDN) capabilities. Now everything under networking at VMware will carry the NSX brand.
"What we have done is brought the entire networking stack under a single NSX portfolio brand to deliver on our vision for the virtual cloud network" Peder Ulander, vice president of product marketing at VMware, told EnterpriseNetworkingPlanet. "To highlight the value of the portfolio, we showed how solutions such as NSX SD-WAN by VeloCloud integrate with NSX Data Center and NSX Cloud to deliver a secure connected fabric from data center to branch to cloud."
VMware acquired VeloCloud in November 2017, and it provides SD-WAN capabilities. Ulander added that VMware is also adding the NSX Hybrid Connect solution, which is a net new product but was built from an existing solution, VMware Hybrid Extension, which in turn was previously known as VMware HCX. Hybrid Connect abstracts on-premises and cloud resources to provide organization with a single view of resources.
Software-Defined Data Center
Though VMware is re-branding is networking product, it isn't changing its broader software-defined data center (SDDC) strategy.
"The software-defined data center is about abstracting, pooling and automating across the entire data center stack — compute, networking and storage," Ulander said. "Within the SDDC, we will virtualize the data center network, and then that virtualized fabric can extend beyond the walls of the private data center to deliver consistent networking and security out to the cloud and to brand locations."
Ulander added that within the SDDC the virtualized network layer is part of that overall Virtual Cloud Network architecture.
"Our NSX portfolio now extends beyond the walls of the SDDC to deliver that business fabric for distributed global environments," he said.
Originally NSX was seen as a complement to VMware's vSphere virtualized server technology. With the dramatic rise in cloud and container environments in the last few years, NSX has seen adoption beyond vSphere as well.
"One of the greatest value propositions of the Virtual Cloud Network is that it can connect and secure applications wherever they reside, in whatever form they take, on whatever infrastructure," Ulander said. "So in our case, we deliver multi-cloud networking capabilities by being able to take networking and security policies that are tied to apps in the data center and extend those out to workloads running in AWS, Azure or IBM Cloud, for instance."
Ulander added that for containers, VMware has NSX Data Center, which has native container and bare-metal networking capabilities built right in, as part of the platform. Additionally he noted that the NSX Data Center is also integrated with Pivotal Container Service (PKS) and also Pivotal Cloud Foundry.
"So a Virtual Cloud Network needs to connect everything to everything in a seamless and secure architecture, and we’re already delivering a lot of these capabilities today," Ulander said. "But in all honestly, nobody is delivering everything that the Virtual Cloud Network aspires to be. There’s plenty ways to go."
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at EnterpriseNetworkingPlanet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.