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Juniper Executes on SDN Vision by Centralizing Network Management
Mar 1, 2013

A couple of months ago, Juniper announced its SDN vision, outlining a comprehensive strategy to enable organizations to “accelerate the design and delivery of new services, lower the cost of network operation, and provide a clear path to implementation.” In that announcement, we outlined a 4-step approach that can enable customers to start taking advantage of the promise of a SDN-enabled network in 2013 and beyond. Each of these steps is outlined by Bob Muglia in his Decoding SDN blog, but the 1st step in this SDN transformation begins with Centralizing Management.


A few days ago, we also unveiled new software and services to help customers realize immediate benefits while laying the foundation to build software-defined networks.  This announcement highlighted a new Junos Space Management application called Junos Space Services Activation Director that enables service providers and enterprises to provision thousands of seamless services, including multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) and Carrier Ethernet for mobile backhaul. Service Activation Direction lowers OPEX cost through simplified deployment and management, and greater business insight gained from service provider networks.


But it isn’t just this one management application that helps organizations centralize management.  In fact, it is the entire Junos Space portfolio.   You’ll want to read the Junos Space: A “New Frontier” blog post to see all the new products, naming, and messaging of this network management software portfolio.


So, how does Junos Space fit into Juniper’s SDN Strategy? 

The first step in this SDN process is to centralize network management, analytics and configuration functionality to provide a single master that configures all networking devices. As noted in the press release, Junos Space enables customers to begin taking this step today.  Here’s how.


  1. Centralized Management
    Junos Space is gives you one place that serves as a contact point into your network

    The Junos Space Network Management Platform provides a single abstracted network model across Juniper’s networking devices, and it extends this functionality to third parties through standards-based Representational State Transfer (RESTful) APIs.  These APIs serve as a single entry point that abstracts your network to enable you to manage, monitor, control and gather insight across your entire network infrastructure.  This enables operators to use their existing Operations/Business Support Systems (OSS/BSS) deployments and tap into the rich functionality of both the Junos Space Network Management Platform and the Management Applications.

  2. Common Management Platform

    Many network vendors today offer point solutions, rather than true platform architectures.  This means operators have to log into different software solutions, even from the same vendor, to find information they need and learn different ways to interact with the software user interface.  Having separate point solutions can increase overall total cost of ownership with a learning curve for each software solution.

    Junos Space offers a platform for deep element management of Juniper devices.  On top of this platform, organizations can add, create, or remove specific plug-n-play management applications … without server downtime.  These applications offer an additional level of abstraction to help in areas such as automated provisioning, virtualization, security, advanced troubleshooting, wireless/wired management, etc., and are all managed from a single pane of glass.  By running on top of the platform, you get a single place to manage the network.

  3. Programmable Network
    The Junos Space Network Management Platform and the Junos Space Management Applications are all accessible through a northbound APIs.  These open APIs provide core building blocks for new innovation, with no need to build solutions from scratch.

    The Junos Space SDK is an open, network-centric application development toolkit explicitly designed to enable developers, customers, or partners to use the information embedded in the network to create unique, differentiated applications quickly, easily, and economically, providing endless possibilities for network intelligence. These custom created network applications then can communicate with the other applications that reside on the Junos Space Network Management Platform.  This ability to extract data out of the network to meet your specific needs enables organizations to create a completely customized management solution.

The centralization, customization, and programmability aspects of Junos Space are important as network providers begin to embrace SDN architectures and increase the value of their network.


New Licensing of Junos Space products

The other major tie-in of Junos Space to our SDN vision is in how we will sell the Junos Space portfolio.  The software that constitutes Junos Space are the first Juniper products to be a part of the new Juniper Software Advantage program, a transformational new software licensing and maintenance model that enables customers to exploit software value over time.  These changes will help customer’s transition to software-defined networks.


The Juniper Software Advantage has the following attributes at its core:

  • Simple: Simple for the customer to understand the value the software provides as well as simple to buy, use and manage rights by our customers.
  • Repeatable: License models which facilitate repeatable use among multiple software offerings and usage scenarios.
  • Measurable: Licenses that charge based on customer needs and are easy to measure.


Instead of purchasing bundles of software with a Junos Space package, we are now separating each of the software items out to be purchased ala carte.  What does that mean?


It means customers can now buy the specific software they want for their specific environments, without being required to buy an entire package.  Customers can get what they want today, and easily scale on management across devices, or by adding new Junos Space Management Applications in the future.  This makes the Junos Space licensing simple, repeatable, and measurable. 


And Junos Space, it’s just the beginning for what we’ll be announcing around our SDN solution.  Stay tuned…