Cisco Live! 2017 Las Vegas

I am fortunate enough this year to get a ticket out to Cisco Live (thanks James and David)! Here are my summary impressions of day 1 of the event

The new leaders of American Tech

Opening Keynote — Chuck took the stage and had 2 guest speakers: Tim Cook of Apple and the CEO of UnitedHealth. Chuck used the word “security” much more than I have heard at keynotes in the past.  You can totally get his head is that IoT will add ~10-20 billion new network connections in the next few years, and without security it will not happen.  So a lot of the keynote was around IoT and security.

I like the Cisco messaging and the thought process is solid. However, it is different watching Chuck vs John Chambers — John had an energy to work the crowd and walk through the crowd with piercing eye contact that just draws you in.  It will take some getting used to to understand American Tech 2.0 is Tim Cook and Chuck Robbins, not Steve Jobs and John Chambers.

New Catalyst 9400 -> the next gen Catalyst 4500

At the world of solutions I gravitated to the new Catalyst 9300 and Catalyst 9400 switching line, as that is what I am going to be presenting to my clients in the next few weeks.   From a hardware point of view, the sexiest, coolest thing was the removable fan tray in the new Cat 9400.  Designed by the people that design Ferraris, the tray goes all the way from the front of the chassis to the back, so you can remove it from either side.  I realize how lame that sounds, and it is. But the reality is that is as sexy and new in hardware thinking goes. Such is the life of hardware (and you suddenly understand why Cisco is going so hard to a software company).

how actually Cisco is identifying malware in encrypted traffic without decryption

The new part of the cat 9300 / 9400 is DNA Center, a plug in into APIC-EM.  One of the highlights is finding malware threats in encrypted traffic. How is that done?  Well, DNA Center requires ISE and Lancope Stealthwatch.  The cat 9300/9400 sends netflow to stealthwatch and it specifically looks for the metadata of the Initial Data Packet (IDP) and Sequence of Packet Lengths and Arrival Times (SPLT).  The guys in the booth tell me that’s all you need to understand if the traffic is malware.  They tell me they have this down to something like 99.95% accuracy. Uh-huh. We’ll see how this plays out.

 

Security Vendors

Think we have enough products?  Check out how many security vendors exist in the marketplace today.

 

My Shake Shack dinner

I got my Shake Shack dinner!  I was looking forward to this all week. Good, but $18 bucks for a burger, fries and a shake! Wow!   I have no idea how the federal reserve measures inflation, but I can tell you they are quite wrong.

 

I saw one really good vendor at the World of Solutions — Kentik.  This is something one of my customers use.  It processes netflow data.  What I love is the visitations. I’m doing a 30 day trial.  I totally see my customers sending netflow to Kentik and Lancope.

 

 

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