Container platform from Cisco enables production-grade multicloud environments

Cisco has announced the Cisco Container Platform, a turnkey, open, and production-grade software container platform to address customers' growing need to have applications seamlessly run the same way on premises and in public clouds.

The Cisco Container Platform simplifies and accelerates how application development and information technology (IT) operations teams configure, deploy, and manage container clusters based on 100 percent upstream Kubernetes. The new solution expands Cisco's growing portfolio of other leading container platform offerings, providing more choice for customers.

The Cisco Container Platform enables an open, multicloud environment with consistent application deployment and management on multiple deployment platforms, including Cisco HyperFlex™, virtual machines (VMs), and bare metal, both on premises and in the cloud. With this range of deployment options, the Cisco Container Platform helps protect customers' existing infrastructure investments and enables IT to run applications where they are most effective, seamlessly transitioning between private and public clouds.

Open, flexible and extensible

The Cisco Container Platform provides an extensible platform for container management based on industry standards with an open architecture and open-source components. The solution addresses the end-to-end management of container clusters including setup, orchestration, authentication, monitoring, networking, load balancing, and optimization. The Cisco Container Platform is also extensible to other open deployment environments and to networking (Contiv), security, analytics, and management tools.

As a single solution that automates repetitive tasks, the Cisco Container Platform can help increase operational efficiencies and drive faster time to value by eliminating the need for IT teams to source, configure, and support multiple disparate solutions. This simplifies deployment and management of production-grade container environments. Cisco will also offer new services to help customers modernize traditional applications, and optimize containers for scale and performance, and provide enterprise-class support for the Cisco Container Platform.

Optimized for Cisco infrastructure

The Cisco Container Platform, working with other Cisco technologies, enables customers to have the easiest and most seamless deployment experience, while extending the value of new and existing Cisco investments. The Cisco Container Platform will initially be released on, and be optimized for Cisco HyperFlex 3.0 and can be licensed separately or as an integrated solution. The Cisco Container Platform also includes Contiv for container networking which can be further integrated with Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (Cisco ACI™), enabling customers to deploy containers and build ACI network policy definitions through Kubernetes.

Optimized in collaboration with Google Cloud

Cisco and Google Cloud have worked closely to extend and optimize the Kubernetes platform for on-premises production environments, providing customers with a consistent environment and the confidence to move workloads between private and public clouds. The Cisco Container Platform is a key element of the open, hybrid cloud offering from Cisco and Google, announced in October and planned for availability in 2018. Customers will be able to run robust, enterprise-ready containers on any infrastructure through the combination of the Cisco Container Platform and the Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), part of the Google Cloud Platform (GCP).

Packaging and availability

The Cisco Container Platform will be available as:

  • Software optimized with Cisco HyperFlex 3.0; available in April 2018.
  • Software supported on VM infrastructure, bare metal, public cloud; available in summer 2018.

Pricing will be subscription-based on number of cluster nodes deployed, with volume-based discounts.

Eyal Manor, Vice President, Engineering, Google

"As the adoption of Kubernetes has exploded, container orchestration and management have become of paramount importance to customers because they enable application portability and consistency across on premises and cloud-based environments. Cisco Container Platform is optimized in collaboration with Google Cloud to deliver a next-generation open hybrid cloud architecture, and represents an important milestone for our integrated Google and Cisco hybrid cloud solution coming later this year."

Dr. Thomas Scherer, Chief Architect, Telindus SA

"As a cloud provider and integrator, we are offering container platforms to our customers, and understand the importance to have such environments available to help them increase business agility. As a Cisco customer and partner, we are excited that Cisco is delivering the Cisco Container Platform to provide a truly consistent hybrid container architecture stretching public and private clouds. This will enable our customers to unify processes and tooling. Moreover, the combined strengths of Cisco's networking expertise and Google's cloud expertise will certainly help to further improve the level of segregation across microservices to better isolate shared hosting of business critical services."

Stephen Elliott, Program Vice President, IDC

"In the multicloud era, enterprise IT executives are looking to modernize traditional applications, and manage containerized applications in a consistent way across public and private clouds. Container deployment, management and monitoring are key requirements to drive speed and quality improvements for the business, and enable scale for IT operations teams. In addition, operations teams also require multiplatform support, including Kubernetes, while helping customers address the end-to-end lifecycle management of container clusters."

Kip Compton, VP, Cloud Platform and Solutions Group, Cisco

"Cisco is focused on enabling customers' multicloud ambitions. Cisco Container Platform helps customers realize the potential of Kubernetes and containers, simplifying the deployment and management of Kubernetes clusters in a multicloud environment with enterprise-class security and compliance."

Ed Horley, Vice President of Engineering, Groupware Technology (Cisco Gold Channel Partner)

"Application containers have emerged as a top-of-mind technology for our customers as they refine their DevOps strategies. We also see a big opportunity to help our Cisco installed base as well as other customers realize optimal value with a multicloud strategy through container integration services. By advising, consulting and migrating our customers to Kubernetes and containers, they are now one step closer to freeing themselves from cloud provider lock-in. With the Cisco Container Platform, customers can now have confidence in this technology with the backing of Cisco."

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