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Cisco Live 2018 - Bots to unBOTtle automation powers of Networks

Cisco Live 2018 - Bots to unBOTtle automation powers of Networks
August 09, 2018

From the exciting opening session to the insightful closing keynote, Cisco Live 2018, Orlando was a phenomenal experience. This year’s Live had an added emphasis on value-based integrations through Dev Net, third party SDK’s and a connected partner ecosystem. Over 300 exhibitors showcased their latest network solutions in the ‘World of Solutions’ through multiple theatre sessions - Innovation Showcase, Think Tank, Partner Villages, Technical Solutions Clinic, and Campus Arena.

HCL was invited by the Cisco Enterprise Network BU to participate in the Enterprise Network and Mobility Village. HCL’s automation framework – “NetBOT”, created a buzz with use cases demonstrating third-party support NetBOT brings to the DNAC ecosystem. Apart from customers, the demos were also attended by Cisco leadership team including Anand Oswal (Senior Vice President, Engineering, Enterprise Networking Business at Cisco), Sachin Gupta (SVP, Enterprise Products) and Phil Cassini (Director and head of DNAC product).

HCL’s automation framework – “NetBOT”, created a buzz with use cases demonstrating third-party support NetBOT brings to the DNAC ecosystem.

Here are my top 3 takeaways from the event.

  1. Orchestration by DevNet movement

    The DevNet movement is creating a new orchestration landscape. With automation, increasing inter-dependence of business and IT (IOT, digital etc.) and artificial intelligence gaining traction, enterprises are rethinking traditional network philosophies. The primary shift is from proprietary hardware to a programmable network. This ability to embed software control into hardware functions has given Software Defined Network deployments a major impetus.

    However, without an orchestration and automation framework, and Bots to replicate human roles, the true value of SDN cannot be realized. Network Bots are helping with widespread tasks across provisioning, deploying and managing Virtual Network Functions. The major conversation is revolving around providing application programming interfaces (APIs) and reliable software development kits (SDKs). These API integrations and streamlined workflows are helping siloes to orchestrate in tandem, thus driving network agility and improving time to market.

    HCL was recognized as a DevNet partner for Cisco DNA Center. Using “NetBOT” as an application on top of DNA-C, Cisco can cater to third-party use cases, making the Cisco DNA ecosystem vendor agnostic. With network automation through NetBOT, the deployment of modern, heterogeneous applications is expedited with ease and simplicity. With NetBOT’s automation capabilities, a largely self-healing enterprise network can be achieved. NetBOT’s event broker helps trigger auto-remediation workflows whenever network problems, threshold breaches or warnings are detected. The automation engine can push changes without requiring user intervention, thus minimizing troubleshooting time and allowing network administrators to focus on more proactive tasks.

    With network automation through NetBOT, the deployment of modern, heterogeneous applications is expedited with ease and simplicity.

    Reinforcing innovation

  2. Reinforcing innovation and strengthening partner ecosystem

    It is evident that Cisco is following Apple’s marketplace strategy to set up an ecosystem for all of its new products – be it Webex Teams (Spark), ACI or DNA. At HCL, we have been building partner ecosystems for the last two and a half decades starting with an Israeli satellite manufacturer, Gilat in the early 90s. We strongly believe that this helps deliver additional value to our customers and we ensure every automation framework built by us, is built grounds up to support integration capabilities. Our network automation product, “NetBOT”, integrates with a wide variety of third-party tools to drive insights-based automation and helps enterprises envisage a real-time, proactive and self-healing network. Consuming the APIs of industry-leading analytics tools, topology mapping tools, and performance monitoring tools, it enables automation of the complete operational lifecycle of network devices from provisioning to policy-based change management and compliance.

    The Cisco vloggers covered all NetBOT theatre sessions and published them live on Twitter. @NetworkChuck, a thought leader in network industry and an expert also posted some of these sessions on his twitter handle.

    Our automation subject matter experts are working closely with our partners to develop a multitude of use cases in and around network automation. With advanced features such as built-in expertise for automated provisioning, self-awareness, cognitive learning, predictive performance, incident auto-remediation, customizable runbooks, and real-time network topologies, our partner enabled automation ecosystem paves a roadmap towards Software Defined Enterprise Network (SDEN).

    Our automation product, “NetBOT”, integrates with a wide variety of third party tools to drive insights-based automation and helps enterprises envisage a real time, proactive and self-healing network.

    This is in line with our stated Mode 1–2–3 strategy through which HCL continues to invest in IP products to address transformational needs.

    Cisco Live 2018

  3. Cisco Live 2018 helped take NetBOT beyond our existing customers

    A multichannel digital campaign “NetBOT as an enabler for Cisco DNAC” was a catalyst for inviting the audience to our booth as well as reaching out to the offline audience. The Cisco vloggers covered all NetBOT theatre sessions and published them live on Twitter. @NetworkChuck, a thought leader in the network industry and an expert also posted some of these sessions on his twitter handle. These sessions were shared extensively on social engagement platforms, under our campaign #CLUS which crossed 500,000 impressions. The NetBOT video on YouTube has already racked up to more than 500 views in just two weeks. Finally, NetBOT has become a staple conversation in our pursuits and it is heartening to see customers imagine use cases beyond what we present to them.

    Overall, we are thrilled to be listed in the DevNet Partner ecosystem; Cisco Live provided us with an opportunity and platform to connect with our partners and customers. With a remarkable experience at Cisco Live 2018, we are all geared up to showcase our products and platform integration capabilities in the upcoming Cisco Live 2019!