“What's in a name?” Shakespeare asked. Well for Juniper’s JunosV FireFly, our newest security offering, a lot that is innovative, surprising and yes even angst producing. When I utter the name, I get back this quizzical look that says, “Brad, don’t you know this is a security product? Security solutions are guards, shields and sentinels not phosphorescent bugs. If you must stray from convention call it what it is, a firewall, an IPSec VPN gateway, a router, a virtual machine but for goodness sakes FireFly?”
I find this reaction well, illuminating. Allow me this grin. One could argue that a product like FireFly, built on our market leading SRX security platform and core operating system, should have a name that leverages our strong established security brand but, we deliberately decided to break from this convention to free FireFly from well-intentioned notions that would limit its use. The name is a play on our tradition of strength in firewall’s, flying around unleashed in a virtual world.
Moving beyond the name, what is it? JunosV FireFly IS a firewall, IPSec gateway, router, VM platform and an integration point. Maybe equally as important, it represents Juniper’s continued commitment to pushing the routing, switching and security markets in new, customer desired, directions. JunosV FireFly represents our continued commitment not only to our SRX platform but to innovating to meet our customers shifting needs.
You see, FireFly is more than the sum of its parts. Yes, it is a market leading security gateway deployed as a Virtual Machine (VM), but it’s also my notion of a powerful operating system turned software platform to run security services, networking functions, intelligence gathering and well, really anything. Exaggeration? Maybe, but I’m a marketing guy, and in this case, I don’t really think so.
I see endless possibilities of Fireflies at the service provider edge handling secure traffic streams and others, spanning VM host to VM host on (insert hypervisor-of your-choice-here), to give much needed visibility in the virtualized realm. There could be Fireflies deployed on beefy hardware as dedicated address translators and Fireflies packaged as mid-market appliances for the Unified Threat Management (UTM) market. If I really let my imagination wander, I might envision Firefly at the center of a security and networking software abstraction layer centrally administered through Junos Space. Some might even call this a software defined networking (SDN) based-innovation on the many definitions that abound.
FireFly is in its early days, but our beta participants are as enthusiastic as we are about the potential use cases of Junos software unplugged from dedicated, purpose-built hardware. Do you have a use case we should consider? Tell us about it. The beta is limited for now, but soon we will be unleashing a swarm of Firefly’s to a network near you.
So what is in a name you ask? I say, it’s the power to transform convention and perception. It’s innovation borne from Junos and the SRX that can greatly expand the promise of both software and systems in the new network.
Exploring the vision for the networking industry and the issues shaping its future.
Vice President, Business Strategy and Marketing
Software Solutions Division