VMware Cloud Foundation Gets Security Breakthrough At RSA

CRN | February 25, 2020

VMware’s popular VMware Cloud Foundation is receiving a major shot in the arm with new security capabilities from Carbon Black and NSX as the virtualization star continues its march to make security intrinsic in all its products. At RSA 2020 conference on Tuesday, VMware unveiled that VMware Advanced Security for Cloud Foundation – which is the basis for offers such as VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud on Dell EMC – will inject Carbon Black’s workload protection Real-time Workload Audit/Remediation technology as well as its Next-Generation Antivirus (NGAV) and Endpoint Detection & Response (EDR) solutions. Additionally, VMware’s NSX Advanced Load Balancer with Web Application Firewall capabilities and NSX Distributed IDS/IPS can be added to VMware Cloud Foundation deployments. The NSX and Carbon Black technology will integrate with VMware vSphere.

Spotlight

The first wave of virtualization disrupted the status quo, helping organizations reduce data center costs and speed up deployments. Businesses prospered under that model, but the next wave in operational agility is here. IT departments must embrace the future of virtualization and redefine the data center. The So ware-Defined Data Center has arrived.

Spotlight

The first wave of virtualization disrupted the status quo, helping organizations reduce data center costs and speed up deployments. Businesses prospered under that model, but the next wave in operational agility is here. IT departments must embrace the future of virtualization and redefine the data center. The So ware-Defined Data Center has arrived.

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VIRTUAL DESKTOP STRATEGIES

Altice Selects Netcracker Cloud BSS for Revenue Management

Netcracker Technology | June 23, 2022

Altice has chosen Netcracker Cloud BSS and Professional Services to offer a SaaS-based solution with improved revenue management capabilities for its affiliates in Portugal, France, Israel, the United States, and the Dominican Republic, according to Netcracker Technology. Altice will implement Netcracker Cloud BSS on AWS to give the operator with cloud-native technology, a SaaS deployment model with evergreen upgrades, and future-proofed capabilities, allowing the operator to reduce on-premise gear and increase flexibility. Netcracker will also provide complete services, such as analysis, design, integration, migration, DevOps, cloud operations, and training, to assist the operator in smoothly migrating, integrating, and operating the solution across its global subsidiaries. For new services, the new revenue management solution will cut costs, enhance billing accuracy, minimize time to market, and enhance order to cash. “We are excited to start this new chapter with such an innovative and global industry leader. Our advanced portfolio of cloud products and services will drastically accelerate and streamline Altice’s billing capabilities to help achieve seamless growth in all markets,” Sylvain Seignour, President of Netcracker

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VMWARE

Employee Surveillance Measures Could Threaten Trust and Increase Staff Turnover, VMware Research Finds

VMware | November 15, 2021

VMware, Inc., a leading innovator in enterprise software, shared results of a global study that revealed the rise in employee performance and trust established in new hybrid working models could be under threat from an increase in the implementation of remote monitoring measures. The study, “The Virtual Floorplan: New Rules for a New Era of Work,” conducted by Vanson Bourne on behalf of VMware, found that 70 percent of companies surveyed have either already implemented or are planning to implement employee surveillance measures to monitor employee productivity since the shift to hybrid working. Among these organizations, the measures being taken include the monitoring of emails (44%), web browsing (41%) and collaboration tools (43%), as well as video surveillance (29%), attention tracking via webcams (28%) and keylogger software (26%). However, 39 percent of companies that have already implemented device monitoring, and 41 percent of companies who are currently in the process of doing so, are in fact seeing “drastically increased” or “increased” employee turnover. The research findings suggest there is a delicate balance to be struck as businesses look for new ways to assess employee performance beyond presentism. From the employee perspective, three quarters (75%) agree that moving to a distributed working environment has meant that their performance – and not traditional metrics such as time spent in the office – is being valued more by their employers. And, 79 percent of employees agree that remote work technologies have enabled them to work more efficiently than before. 74% of organizations have had to develop new ways to measure employee productivity. Among these organizations, the new approach to monitoring productivity has been achieved through the use of performance-focused solutions including regular catch-ups with managers to discuss workloads (55%), assessing output and agreed deliverables (53%) and using new project management software (47%). However, now that direct reports are not necessarily sitting a few cubicles away, employers are evolving new ways to monitor and quantify employee productivity. While approaching six in ten (59%) employees recognize their organization has had to develop new ways to monitor productivity as part of the move to hybrid working, transparency remains critical. A quarter of employees (24%) don’t know whether their organization has implemented device monitoring systems on their devices to monitor their productivity. “Globally we are seeing organizations shift permanently to hybrid work models that don’t require knowledge workers to be office-based all the time. With this shift, employers should proceed with caution when replacing presentism with monitoring tools. Monitoring and performance are two very different things. Digital workspace tools enable people to work from anywhere and our research shows employees are feeling more valued and trusted. A lack of transparency and measurement by ‘stealth and numbers,’ can quickly erode employee faith and lead to talent heading for the door, in a highly competitive and challenging skills market.” Shankar Iyer, Senior Vice President and General Manager, End-User Computing, VMware Employee surveillance is one of many topics touched on in The Virtual Floorplan: New Rules for a New Era of Work. Other key findings include: New “workplace tribes” have emerged via digital tools used by employees. The stabilization of hybrid work has resulted in a new kind of office floorplan — a “virtual floorplan,” which is based more on affinity, shared goals, and shared values than physical proximity. The virtual floorplan comes with new rules, as well as new success factors for employees, leaders, and teams. View the infographic. We’ve entered a new era of transparency and trust. With less central control and in-person interaction, transparency and trust are emerging as vital qualities that leaders must embrace to advance and unify their organizations in a hybrid-by-default world. View the infographic. Security is a team sport. The virtual floorplan introduces countless freedoms for employees — and just as many security risks for IT. With less direct control over apps, devices, and networks, IT is navigating a new paradigm where security is a team sport. View the infographic. Methodology VMware commissioned a survey, undertaken by an independent research organization, Vanson Bourne, in July and August 2021. 7,600 respondents were surveyed globally, consisting of HR, IT and business decision makers as well as employees across IT, Manufacturing, engineering and production, Financial services, Business and professional services, Retail and wholesale, Energy, oil/gas and utilities, Distribution and transport, Public healthcare, Construction and property, Public Education, Telecommunications, Consumer services, Local government, Central government, Media leisure and entertainment, Private education, Private healthcare, Hospitality and others. All organizations surveyed have 500 or more employees globally. The countries surveyed include UK, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, Poland, Norway, Sweden, Spain, UAE, Saudi Arabia, US, Canada, Japan, Australia, India, China, Singapore and South Korea. About VMware VMware is a leading provider of multi-cloud services for all apps, enabling digital innovation with enterprise control. As a trusted foundation to accelerate innovation, VMware software gives businesses the flexibility and choice they need to build the future. Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, VMware is committed to building a better future through the company’s 2030 Agenda.

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VIRTUAL SERVER INFRASTRUCTURE

AirHop Launches the Industry's First Comprehensive Portfolio of Field-proven xApps and rApps to Accelerate 4G and 5G Open RAN Deployments

AirHop | February 24, 2022

AirHop Communications, a leader in 4G and 5G real-time (RT) Radio Access Network (RAN) Intelligence software solutions, announced they are delivering their AuptimTM family of 4G/5G xApp and rApp RAN automation and optimization solutions. Auptim is a portfolio of field-proven xApp and rApp software applications compliant with the O-RAN Alliance reference architecture and are deployed on 3rd party RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) platforms. Airhop will demonstrate Auptim xApps and rApps with several ecosystem partners including VMware, Juniper Networks and the Open Networking Foundation at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We have delivered commercially hardened near RT automation and optimization use cases with our cloud-native eSON software platform and AI/ML use cases with eSON360 at Reliance Jio and Rakuten Mobile. This experience has enabled us to rapidly develop important use cases as xApps and rApps supporting the O-RAN architecture. The Open RAN ecosystem is working to enable accelerated delivery of best-in-class disaggregated components. This has been our experience through the integration of Auptim xApps and rApps with RIC platforms from leading RIC vendors and deployments in trials with leading MNOs." Yan Hui, AirHop Co-Founder and CEO "AirHop's near real-time RAN automation and optimization applications have provided a key component in Rakuten's journey to drive operations automation and consistent performance across its network," stated Madhukiran Medithe, Head of Network Intelligence & Analytics Department at Rakuten Mobile Inc. "As Rakuten leads the way in making O-RAN RIC (RAN Intelligent Control) a practical reality, we are excited to be working with AirHop and see them bring their capabilities to Rakuten’s O-RAN architecture with the Auptim family of xApps and rApps." With the growing complexity of 4G & 5G networks and the disaggregation of the RAN stack with Open RAN, the enablement of intelligent automation and optimization solutions has become mandatory for both greenfield and brownfield Mobile Network Operators (MNOs). The industry has recognized the need for both near RT RAN management and AI/ML approaches for intelligent RAN optimization. The O-RAN Alliance is driving a standard architecture and open interfaces to lead this enablement with the Near RT RIC and Non-RT RIC platforms. The Telecom Infra Project (TIP) OpenRAN RAN Intelligence and Automation (RIA) subgroup is enabling an ecosystem of MNOs and vendors to develop of AI/ML based use cases. Auptim near RT xApps and AI/ML based non RT rApps are critical pieces of the puzzle for MNOs to leverage these platforms to realize lower operating costs, improved user experience and provide greater flexibility for service delivery. "One key objective for Open RAN is the establishment of a rich ecosystem of disaggregated components to drive faster innovation across the layers of the RAN," noted Stéphane Téral, Chief Analyst of Lightcounting Market Research. "The O-RAN RIC platforms in conjunction with xApps and rApps provide promise for greater innovation in performance optimization, improved spectral efficiency, enhanced user experience and lower operation costs. It is intriguing to see AirHop leverage its experience delivering near RT automation and optimization solutions for the Rakuten Mobile Open RAN deployment into xApps and rApps for deployment on RIC platforms across the ecosystem." Auptim consists of a portfolio of automation and optimization software applications, including solutions available now in addition to a roadmap of solutions available later this year. The Auptim portfolio provides use cases spanning RAN configuration optimization, RAN mobility optimization, RAN coverage and capacity optimization, automated energy savings and RAN operations automation. The following xApps and rApps are available today for RIC integrations and commercial deployments: Physical Cell Identity (PCI) Optimization for automated detection and resolution of PCI conflict and confusion, available as an xApp or rApp Random Access CHannel (RACH) Optimization for RACH parameter optimization, available as an xApp or rApp Mobility Robustness Optimization (MRO) to optimize handover performance, available as an rApp Mobility Load Balancing (MLB) for dynamic balancing of user load among neighbor cells, available as an xApp or rApp Multi-Cell Interference Management (MCIM) to dynamically detect and manage interference - increasing spectral efficiency, available as an xApp Anomaly Detector (AD) for implementation of machine learning based Cell Outage Detection and Smart Diagnostics of network operational anomalies, available as an rApp Auptim provides MNOs with a leading portfolio of xApps and rApp for use on 3rd party RIC platforms. AirHop is collaborating with a broad ecosystem of Near RT RIC and Non RT RIC platforms, RAN vendors as well as TIP and O-RAN Alliance to accelerate the availability of O-RAN compliant commercial class near RT and non RT RAN automation and optimization solutions. Some Auptim xApps have also been deployed as part of the disaggregated multi-vendor Open RAN field trial conducted by Deutsche Telekom. “Enabling vendors such as AirHop to participate in an ecosystem where MNO needs are defined and prioritized and vendor solutions are tested and validated is a foundational goal of the TIP OpenRAN RIA subgroup”, stated David Hutton, Chief Engineer at Telecom Infra Project. “We welcome AirHop’s participation, through TIP RIA to align their Auptim family of use cases with RIC platform and OpenRAN network element vendors to ensure the success of OpenRAN.” "Our collaboration with AirHop is an excellent example of the Open RAN ecosystem, enabling innovation across the RAN stack to deliver disruptive solutions for MNOs without impacting their current business operations. We share a common objective in delivering new levels of programmability and automation for the RAN through VMware's Centralized RIC and Distributed RIC platforms in conjunction with AirHop Auptim xApps and rApps" said Lakshmi Mandyam, VP Product Management and Partner Ecosystems, Service Provider and Edge BU at VMware. "We are excited to be showcasing some fruits of our collaboration at MWC Barcelona this month with a demonstration of the Auptim PCI rApp integrated with our Centralized RIC platform." AirHop and Juniper Networks will demonstrate a Random Access Channel (RACH) parameter optimization use case using the Juniper Near RT RIC and the AirHop RACH optimization xApp at MWC Barcelona. The demonstration highlights the RACH xApp being deployed on the Juniper O-RAN based Near RT RIC and automatically detecting and resolving RACH parameter conflicts in various RAN scenarios. About AirHop Communications AirHop Communications is a leading provider of cloud-native Open RAN automation and real-time optimization software solutions that deliver significant gains in spectral efficiency, lower operating costs and improved end-user quality of experience for 4G and 5G mobile networks. AirHop's Auptim family of O-RAN compliant near RT xApps and AI/ML-based rApps provide O-RAN compliant intelligent RAN automation and optimization solutions. AirHop’s eSON and eSON360 solutions provide commercially hardened and massively scalable near RT and AI/ML based RAN automation and optimization for pre-O-RAN architecture deployments. AirHop’s solutions are backed by a comprehensive portfolio of patents and are deployed across more than a million macro and small cells in commercial MNO networks. AirHop is headquartered in San Diego, California.

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