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Introducing Ixia’s Newest Packet Broker: Vision X

June 10, 2019 by Sarah Gross

As the FIFA Women’s World Cup matches start up, you can bet I will be live-streaming games — at home, in the car, and at work (please don’t tell my boss). Being a US Women’s National Team (USWNT) fan, I don’t want to miss out on any of the action, along with the millions of other people watching. 

Imagine this: 

It’s the final match of the tournament and after a full 90 minutes of play plus 30 minutes of overtime, the US and France (the home team) are tied. They’ve started penalty kicks and there is one kick left for each team. The US is up 4-3 with it being France’s turn to kick next. If France misses or the US goalie blocks the shot, the US wins. The French player is about to take her shot and just as she winds up to make contact with the ball…THE LIVE-STREAM FREEZES. 

Next thing you know, after a few seconds of a frozen image on the screen, the USWNT is celebrating a victory. (The US wins in this made up scenario, of course). I MISSED THE FINAL SHOT!!! *Censored content*!!!!!!!!

Don’t you hate it when this happens? This could happen while watching a sporting match, video calling your Grandma, or trading stocks online. It’s the result of dropped packets in your live data stream. 

Bad enough when it’s the World Cup, but just imagine what it would be like if packets getting dropped were not just a video stream, but instead were a data stream containing potential malware and other bad things that were being sent to your firewall for inspection. What was just an infuriating inconvenience with the soccer stream becomes an existential challenge in the form of dangerous security blind spots. The good news is that there’s a way to prevent these dropped packets and the lost data and blind spots they bring.

Ixia network packet brokers don’t drop packets under load or with features turned on, unlike our competition. Vision X, our latest and greatest NPB, uses hardware acceleration in the form of special FPGA chips that process data at line rate even with features and filters turned on. 

Vision X network packet broker (NPB)

Vision X is a new platform that rounds out our network packet broker portfolio. It is a high-performance, high-density network visibility solution that can scale, grow, and expand with your data center. But at only 3RU, it packs a lot of performance into a small package.

Data volumes and velocities are booming while edge devices and applications are multiplying. In all this growth, how do you maintain visibility, secure your network, and manage all your environments?

Think of a network packet broker as one piece in an abstraction layer in your environment, sitting above your network, collecting data, and forwarding that data further up to your tools. By inserting an abstraction layer into your environment, you create access points to pertinent data on the network. This gives you the information you need to make better business decisions and keep your network running smoothly today, tomorrow, and in the future.

Network visibility products act as an abstraction layer for your network

Vision X acts as an access point between the data on your network and your security and monitoring tools. In only 3 RU, each chassis collects data with up to 60 five-speed ports and processes up to 2 Tbps. It comes preinstalled with NetStack and PacketStack features, including:

•    Aggregation
•    Deduplication
•    Filtering
•    Timestamping
•    Packet trimming
•    Load balancing
•    Replication

And more…

The best part is:

You don’t have to replace your existing security and monitoring tools as your data center evolves.

Vision X network packet broker has a modular chassis

Vision X is modular, supporting four modules in the front and one in the back. This modular architecture allows you to configure Vision X to fit your needs today…and tomorrow. What suits your network needs today may not be what you need in three years. That’s great! You can swap out the modules on your Vision X once that day comes, preserving your investment. 

Vision X is also compatible with Ixia Fabric Controller (IFC) Cluster. With IFC Cluster, multiple Vision NPBs can be connected to create a security and monitoring fabric that operates as a single, cohesive layer. This centralized, single fabric offers resilience, flexibility, scalability, and management for your network.

To find out more about Vision X and Ixia, visit us at Cisco Live June 9-13!

Did you know packet brokers can increase your network infrastructure ROI? Learn how in this eBook.