Cisco SDN Load Balancing
Avi Vantage and Cisco ACI for advanced network automation

Cisco ACI together with Cisco APIC controller is intended to create highly automated and programmable infrastructure enabling enterprises to be productive and reduce operational costs. Software defined networks, such as Cisco ACI help networking teams create the foundation for flexible networking services including firewalls and load balancing.

However, many challenges arise from today’s complex appliance-based load balancers and their operational requirements. IT administrators need to configure multiple network switches to steer traffic to them. This task is time-consuming and error prone. These hardware-based ADCs are difficult to automate and are not conducive to deliver self-service experiences to application teams.

The power of SDN lies in its ability to handle the dynamic infrastructure requirements of modern applications, which also requires the ability to scale out the capacity of application delivery services in real time using smart SDN automation. With traditional load balancers, adding extra capacity often means manually adding a new appliance – virtual or physical – with many steps. Administrators also need to define sophisticated application delivery policies and review application visibility data for actionable information, such as application latency information and performance, to guarantee SLAs.

Avi Vantage Platform Integration with Cisco ACI Solution

Unlike traditional, hardware-based application delivery products, the Avi Vantage Platform is a software-only Application Delivery Controller (ADC) that integrates with Cisco APIC to directly address all the challenges described above through its unique software-defined architecture with a central controller.

The Avi Vantage Platform matches the Cisco SDN automation offered by Cisco ACI with the industry’s simplest L4-L7 service insertion for Cisco APIC.

The Avi Vantage Platform provides real-time analytics, application visibility, and elastic application delivery services – such as SSL termination and content acceleration. When it comes to Cisco load balancing needs, only Avi Vantage offers the most comprehensive and seamless service delivery experience.

SDN Load Balancing Benefits with
Avi Vantage / Cisco ACI Integration

Together, Cisco APIC and Avi Vantage enable IT to roll out highly elastic application delivery services quickly, tailored to business and application needs. The Avi Controller builds a dynamic service fabric by making the Avi Service Engines (load balancers) available to Cisco ACI, on demand. Cisco APIC programs the ACI fabric and communicates with Avi Controller through REST APIs provided by Avi Networks.

SDN Automation and Self-Service

  • Distributed architecture mirrors Cisco ACI automation with a central controller and distributed data plane
  • Delivers self-service for app owners with 100% REST API
  • Clear isolation of user roles between the Network Administrator and Load Balancer Administrator
  • Load balancing services are decoupled from infrastructure
  • Runs on standard x86 servers, dramatically lowering total cost of ownership

Fast, Simple Service Insertion

  • Simplified L4–7 service insertion by configuring the ACI fabric based on policies
  • Fully automated, one click deployment of APIC integrated load balancing services
  • Automated load balancer provisioning, service insertion through Service Manager Mode using REST APIs
  • Day zero automated Service Graphs creation by Avi Vantage, which customers can use on fly for any sort of deployments
  • Shared Service Graph support for One Contract for Many Virtual Services, which helps decrease number of Contract consumption in ACI fabric

End-To-End Application Visibility

  • Delivers powerful inline analytics that complements Cisco APIC’s network visibility with end-to-end (user-to-app) timing information as well as visibility into application data
  • IT admins can very quickly pinpoint the source of any service degradation issues and shorten troubleshooting time and effort with searchable TCP / HTTP logs

Elastic Autoscale and Automation

  • Avi Vantage enables automated fabric provisioning to provide elastic load balancing services, complimenting Cisco APIC centralized policies
  • The Avi Controller can increase data plane capacity in real time by creating an Avi Service Engine and making it available to the Cisco ACI dynamically without any human intervention
  • Autoscaling load balancers and apps based on real time traffic with self-healing load balancing services

Technical Challenges of Cisco SDN Load Balancing
Solved with Avi Vantage Platform Integration

For Cisco ACI load balancing, the Avi Vantage Platform enables IT teams to quickly roll out network infrastructure and application-delivery services in the data center based on centralized policies. Find out more about the technical benefits of this integration:

Technical Challenges of Cisco SDN Load Balancing