Brocade and Ruckus – Ready to Reinvent Campus and Data Center Networking

With the acquisition of Ruckus Networks – Brocade is ready to reinvent networking and communications, as far as campus and data center technology solutions are concerned.

Swapna Bapat, Director for Systems Engineering, Brocade India speaks with Zia Askari from about the company’s core strengths today and how it is delivering greater elasticity and flexibility to evolving networking needs of enterprise.

Tell us about the priorities that Brocade has currently?

We are and will continue to be a data center specialist. But now with the acquisition of Ruckus, we complete the story in campus and datacenter. Brocade is also leading in software networking and automation and has acquired StackStorm a couple of months ago, StackStorm is a start-up and works on open source based automation software, automating the lifecycle of a network starting with the data center and having the capability to integrate various other IT systems within it. It contributes to digital transformation in the enterprise.

Brocade SLX 9850, a next-generation data center routing solution designed to support the exponential growth in network traffic and deliver the advanced functionality that organizations require as they accelerate their digital transformation.


The extensible SLX 9850 provides industry-leading density, scale and performance for 10/40/100GbE data center use cases. The SLX 9850 also takes advantage of Brocade Workflow Composer to provide server-based, DevOps-style network automation that integrates across IT domains for end-to-end workflow automation.

The Brocade SLX Insight Architecture provides a new approach to network monitoring and troubleshooting, making it faster, easier and more cost-effective to obtain comprehensive, real-time visibility that is required for network operations and automation. By embedding network visibility on every router, organizations can achieve pervasive visibility throughout the network to quickly identify problems, accelerate mean-time-to-remediation and improve overall service levels.

Which verticals you see would be needing such solutions primarily evolving around the SDN?

SDN has the ability to translate a business process on to the IT infrastructure. Today, there is no relationship between how the traffic travels and how the business wants the traffic to travel. So we need human intervention to program the network to work in a certain way.

Brocade flow optimizer, an SDN application, who’s primary job is to detect an anomaly in the traffic in the network and redirect the traffic from mirroring in a completely automated way. This SDN application can be deployed by a bank, university, service providers and large enterprises. IT teams need to understand how to use these applications.

How big is the customer universe for Brocade in India?

It is ranging from internet service providers to cloud service providers. Recently, we announced NxtGen and all their data center are with Brocade and they not only use Brocade data center fabric but also use our software routers and gateway. They have completely adopted Brocade technology culture in their data center.

We have a number of banks and one of the banks is on our data center which is located in the west. A number of government organizations are on Brocade’s data center and campus, In fact one of the largest state’s IT department is completed on Brocade and a number of universities are on Brocade. An upcoming university has chosen Brocade infrastructure so Brocade has customers across verticals.

One of the reasons for our success is the open programming capabilities on the network. The customers are not entertaining closed proprietary network architecture and are moving to Brocade.

The enterprises are looking at network which gives them elasticity, flexibility as well as better return on investment so in those terms how competitive would be Brocade solutions?

Our solutions are completely competitive because we look at multiple ways to reduce cost of customers and on top of that they get an open programmability platform and the customers get the ability to automate which is very unique to Brocade.


Brocade SLX 9850 is a new routing platform and has 60% higher density than our competitors in terms of 10 gig, 40 gig etc. We have x86 on the control card and we have chosen 10 gig link just to upload analytics.

We have inbuilt hard disk of 256 gig dedicated to store large amounts of data. We have best API support, bypass support and Python support so we have the ability to program continuously. It is being tested across various networks across the world.

What role is Brocade playing in smart cities initiatives?

We are contributing to influence the thinking of various consultants who work on Digital India and smart cities when they are defining the infrastructure for various states for various applications.

We are contributing in how the infrastructure should be open in nature and we are working with various states for enablement and teaching them OpenStack, SDN.

Tell me about Brocade go-to market strategy especially when you talk about products like Brocade SLX, new routing platform?

We have two areas for our go-to market, we have a set of large enterprises which we clearly target. We also bid for SMBs and go through our partners for that. We have a number of partners in tier I and tier II which helps us reach to medium and smaller sized customer base.

This is a high end product, it is a portfolio and we have launched the first product and this is meant for the internet exchange providers, cloud service providers and ISPs. This is something that we would do directly and in some cases through tier I partners.

Share your thoughts on what Brocade is doing towards the integration of Ruckus and what is the roadmap Brocade has for wireless portfolio and more end price connectivity?

Our campus portfolio is going to be expanded to sell Ruckus wireless solutions. This is the campus roadmap which addresses education, hospitality and large enterprises as each of them have a different need. Ruckus is a market leader in service provider wi-fi and will continue to focus on it.

Ruckus is very successful in India as most of the service providers are using Ruckus. We will continue to expand in the Wi-fi space and are working with service providers to understand their backhaul needs. So that is the continued investment for us and today we have the best solutions for outdoor access point.

What are some of the areas that you see contributing towards the profitability of the organizations in the coming months?

We see growth in the education and hospitality sector. We are seeing investments in education from the government as a lot of IITs and IIMs are coming up in the country. In hospitality, we are working with all the large brands in India and we see definite growth in hospitality and service providers.

Our SAN business continues to grow at the APAC region and we are seeing good wins in India in the campus business because of the open programmability of Brocade.