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Cisco laces network with more AI and machine learning

Written by Tue 11 Jun 2019

Analytics and automation to help IT teams understand network behaviour and pre-emptively prevent issues

Cisco has released a series of software updates that will see AI and machine learning capabilities become more deeply embedded into the network.

The central idea is that new analytics and automation features will provide IT teams with tailored insights and visibility into network data, the need of which is increasing as IT teams continue to be bombarded with increased workloads across multiple domains.

On the visibility side, Cisco will use analytics to compare local network data against its anonymised data lake, in order to provide IT teams with tailored network performance ratings, that will evolve as teams add more devices, users and applications.

Applying this machine learning to both local data sets and its aggregated data pool, Cisco will identify any issues affecting network performance, alerting teams to the most urgent problems and pre-emptively informing them of issues before they develop into something more serious.

Machine learning will also be used to automatically test the logical troubleshooting steps engineers would take to resolve a problem, accelerating the time it takes to analyse the root cause of a network issue and hone in on the best corrective action.

As the pace of change and diversity of the environment continues to rapidly evolve, Cisco is committed to continually simplifying our solutions,” said Scott Harrell, senior VP and GM of Cisco’s enterprise networking business.

“Artificial intelligence and machine learning can enable businesses to efficiently discern which issues to prioritize, becoming more nimble and proactive. This will have a profound effect on network operations and the IT teams that run them. At Cisco, we’re future-proofing our networks and the workforce through automation and intelligence.”

Cisco is also upgrading its intent-based networking tech, which the company has been rolling out across the network to help teams manage more devices and applications. Cisco is introducing multidomain integrations to provide end-to-end network segmentation, application performance and security.

Cisco said the integration of Cisco SD-Access with Cisco SD-WAN and Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) makes it easier for IT teams to consistently authorise, onboard and segment users and devices across campus, branch, data centre and cloud networks, even when users and applications change.

Application performance will get a boost as Cisco now automatically communicates application needs between these domains, allowing the network to select the best route and prioritise traffic, even with dynamic applications. 

To protect its intent-based networking tech in harsh edge environments, such as chemical plants and oil refineries, Cisco also introduced new ruggedized industrial switches, access points, and routers.

“A secure connection is the foundation for every IoT deployment,” said Liz Centoni, senior vice president and general manager, IoT at Cisco. “By extending intent-based networking to the IoT edge, we are helping IT and OT teams work together to reduce operational complexity, boost the bottom line, and improve worker safety.”

Written by Tue 11 Jun 2019


automation Cisco intent based networking machine learning networking
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