Interop 2012 Wrapup – BYOD and SDN (and a whole lot more)

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The curtain has come down on the biggest show in enterprise networking (Interop 2012) and over 13,000 IT professionals seem to have survived 4 days in Las Vegas. Everyone knows that tradeshows are frenetic with numerous conference sessions, hundreds of ‘great new product’ announcements, flashy exhibits and various hospitality events vying for your attention. But Vegas adds a whole new level of distraction that is … well … Vegas! When participating in a tradeshow in Las Vegas, sleep suffers.

As you might expect, Interop 2012 continued last year’s focus on Cloud Computing and Enterprise Networking with Software Defined Networks (SDN) and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) surfacing as major topics of interest. Here are a few highlights from Interop 2012:

  • In her keynote address, Cisco CTO Padmasree Warrior mentioned SDN as something that Cisco has been thinking ‘broadly and holistically about’ for some time and COPE (Cisco Open Programming Environment) – as Cisco’s SDN architecture. Not much additional information was available, but expect more from Cisco.
  • Like last year, OpenFlow was very visible with more products and demonstrations (and somewhat less hype) this year.  The OpenFLow Lab was a very active place on the show floor and OpenFLow 1.0-based network controller from NEC won the Best-of-Interop award.
  • Everyone seemed to work BYOD into their presentation or exhibit.  With all the hype, sometimes the reality was lost, but many speakers and vendors were talking about very practical things such as policy, access, security, traffic management and device controls. Most everyone shared that perspective that BYOD is about employee productivity, not smart devices.
  • Huawei used the Interop show to formally introduce themselves to the North American