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Cisco Integrates Accedian into Crosswork to Deliver Uninterrupted Service Assurance

One of the many consequences of having a network that spans multiple vendors and domains is that it makes providing end-to-end service assurance a formidable chore. There are unanticipated challenges at every turn, and operators must learn to expect the unexpected as they go through the motions.

At the Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live EMEA 2024, Cisco demoed a solution that helps operators overcome these challenges consistently, and deliver flawless quality of service (QoS) to the users. Cisco taps into the capabilities of Crosswork and Accedian to provide teams managing massive-scale multivendor, multi-domain networks freeway to automated network assurance.

Monitoring Differentiated Services in a Complex Network

Today’s customers operate in an environment that spans geographies and networks, and they depend on the highest level of QoS to function.

“Every operator’s bread and butter is ensuring that they can deliver on enhanced SLAs and offer better customer experience so that they can maintain their market share and reduce customer churn,” says Rana Kazamel, Director of Product Management at Cisco.

Maintaining continued service performance and QoE in a complex network where the traffic footprint grows everyday has a series of speedbumps. These can be at any front – triaging a problem as it happens, making correlations and mapping it back to the network, or working out the fastest way to troubleshoot.

CSPs must monitor the services every minute and measure the real results so that when something breaks, the promised level of service is still maintained.

An intent-based approach to network assurance that is fully customized for the environment unlocks significant opportunities. “It means that you’re actually starting from the service intent, the metrics within the SLA that you need to be able to deliver on that service. We take that as our source of truth to ensure that we’re always monitoring on that,” Kazamel points out.

Cisco Crosswork and Accedian

Ordinarily, network assurance solutions pick up bits and bytes of data and turn it over to the operators to make sense. But Cisco strays from the playbook. “Instead of flooding you with alarms and alerts that you get from the network and try to figure out what those mean, and how a fault impacts a service, you don’t need to do that anymore.”

Cisco Crosswork and Accedian do all the work for the operators – pulling up information, making correlations and turning it into insights. In a simplistic view, the dashboard tells operators the overall health of the services, what service is down, why it may be experiencing problem, and what are the steps to remediate it promptly. This flow of information is streamlined and made readily accessible for all teams starting at the SOC, to NOC to domain SMEs.

Cisco Crosswork Network Controller is designed to visualize performance metrics of heterogenous environments in a single dashboard that operators can look at, and receive alerts in real-time about SLA violations and service drops. Through integration with the Accedian Skylight Platform, it now collects end-to-end service performance data. Skylight probes capture the data and send it over to the network controller to investigate and find issues proactively.

Granular results are achieved by running Skylight’s diagnoses through Crosswork Network Controller’s deep analysis.

As reports are passed down from the SOC to the Network Operation Center (NOC) for further drilling down, the teams can leverage the Crosswork Hierarchical Controller (HCO) to get deeper visibility into the origins of the problems through active topology maps.

When the insights finally reach the Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), they can quickly isolate the problem parts and make fixes adroitly.

Be sure to check out the full presentation and demo from Tech Field Day Extra at Cisco Live EMEA 2024 to see the solution in action.

About the author

Sulagna Saha

Sulagna Saha is a writer at Gestalt IT where she covers all the latest in enterprise IT. She has written widely on miscellaneous topics. On she writes about the hottest technologies in Cloud, AI, Security and sundry.

A writer by day and reader by night, Sulagna can be found busy with a book or browsing through a bookstore in her free time. She also likes cooking fancy things on leisurely weekends. Traveling and movies are other things high on her list of passions. Sulagna works out of the Gestalt IT office in Hudson, Ohio.

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