HP Teams With VAR Bedrock Technologies On HP SDN-Tech Presentation

Dean Cappellazzo, CEO of Bedrock, said HP's SDN technology and strategy presentation -- delivered by Bethany Mayer, senior vice president and general manager of HP networking, to a group of about 70 Bedrock customers -- was the first-ever SDN event sponsored with a solution provider.

The event, held in the solution provider's Sunnyvale, Calif.-based integration center, comes at a time when SDN is getting a lot of buzz but is still not well known by potential customers, Cappellazzo said.

[Related: Dell Makes Big SDN Play With New Fabric Technologies ]

"SDN is getting a lot of publicity as an up-and-coming technology much like VMware did back in the early days," he said. "We're working closely with HP to help customers make sense of SDN and how it might disrupt the networking business by looking at hardware as dumb switches."

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SDN is a very compelling concept, and there is a lot of buzz coming from newcomers like Nicira, which last year was acquired by VMware, and Big Switch Networks, Cappellazzo said.

"But HP has an SDN software package that works now," he said. "And HP has been investing in this business since 2007. VMware's purchase of Nicira was a big awakening that SDN is serious. We look forward to the opportunity to partner with HP to be among the first to introduce its new products."

Mayer said that customers have been building SDN solutions using HP technology since 2007 when HP first introduced networking switches with OpenFlow SDN technology. Since then, HP has shipped over 15 million OpenFlow ports with its networking gear, she said.

In addition to the OpenFlow-capable switches, HP's complete Virtual Applications Network (VAN) SDN solution also includes an SDN controller software and multiple applications optimized for use with SDN environments, Mayer said.

The SDN controller software was introduced earlier this year and is currently in beta testing, with availability scheduled for the second half of 2013, she said.

HP has already introduced a number of applications, including the Virtual Cloud Network for scalable, multitenant public clouds, and the Sentinel Security application to stop security threats before they reach the network. The company is also introducing a unified communications application under which an API from the SDN controller software is presented to Microsoft Lync to let Lync adjust the network quality of service on a dynamic basis, she said.

While HP's SDN controller is currently offered as a software, the company is considering offering an appliance version, Mayer said.