eBay Builds Virtualized Test Network With Nicira, OpenStack


The online auction house eBay has developed a cloud platform using Nicira’s virtualized networking technology and the open-source OpenStack software to test and build out Web applications.

eBay's decision to build a cloud service in an OpenStack environment is one of the first deployments of OpenStack by a commercial enterprise. In addition, the selection of Nicira's Network Virtualization Platform shows its cutting-edge technology is gaining acceptance by established companies.

Virtualization giant VMware announced its intention to buy Nicira last month for $1.2 billion in a move that highlighted the importance of Nicira's software-defined networking technology.

[Related: Analysis: Nicira Buy To Bring VMware Closer To OpenStack, Networking Vendors]

Jean-Christophe Martin, cloud architect for eBay, said the company is using Nicira's Network Virtualization Platform and OpenStack to provide a virtualized network where developers can experiment and test new features for eBay.

"It's a phased rollout," Martin said. "We want to validate the testing before extending its use."

Martin said eBay was looking to enhance the performance of its infrastructure through its virtual and bare metal servers. "After virutalizing compute servers, we wanted to go to the next level and to virtualize the network," he said.

The company selected OpenStack as the open-source environment along with Nicira and Quantum, a network management project Nicira led as a contributor to OpenStack.

Alan Cohen, vice president of marketing for Nicira, said the cloud testing platform will help eBay handle its massive workloads at a quicker pace.

"eBay had a strong need to accelerate its ability to onboard applications," Cohen said. "They are now in production with OpenStack and Nicira's network virtualization component, and they've been able to spin up servers faster."

PUBLISHED AUG. 6, 2012

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