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This Week: Data Center Deployment with EVPN/VXLAN

This Week: Data Center Deployment with EVPN/VXLAN provides readers with a structured understanding of EVPN/VXLAN technology concepts and how they are implemented. The book includes detailed configuration examples, verification commands, and packet captures to demonstrate different traffic flows within a data center as well as for Data Center Interconnect (DCI).This Week: Data Center Deployment with EVPN/VXLAN contains five full-length case studies complete with illustrations, configurations, and field-tested insights from a senior data center architect.

When you’re done with this book, you’ll be able to:

  • Understand the fundamentals and implementation aspects of using EVPN-VXLAN for data center deployments.

  • Design next generation data center architectures.

  • Show detailed configuration examples, verification commands, and packet walkthrough examples.

Publication Praise

“Expert guides on the practical applications of EVPN are few and far apart. Deepti brings you up close and personal to this powerful technology applied to the most common data center use cases. Grab your thinking cap and get ready to learn.”

— Aldrin Isaac, Sr. Dir., Switching Solution Architecture, Juniper Networks, Co-Author of RFC7432

“Choosing the right set of options to achieve optimal network design in data center deployment requires deep understanding of EVPN/VXLAN technology as well as real world deployment experience. Deepti Chandra has worked with many experts at Juniper to come up with a concise set of guidelines and configuration examples that will help network architects build their data center fabrics quickly. The configuration examples in this book help define best-practice data center deployment.”

— Sachin Natu, Sr. Dir,, PM, Routing Applications, Juniper Networks

“This book is a valuable resource for those looking to explore or implement EVPN/VXLAN. The various deployment and configuration options are not only explained in great detail, but also backed up with validation in the lab.”

— Victor Ganjian, POC Lab Engineer, Juniper Networks, JNCIP-DC, Author of Day One: Using Ethernet VPNs for Data Center Interconnect

“Deepti Chandra shares her extensive knowledge and insights in this no-nonsense, practical guide for engineers and network architects alike.”

— Wen Lin, Distinguished Engineer, Juniper Networks

“A thorough, well-organized, and insightful reference that doesn’t miss a single detail. It’s the new Bible for data center deployment!”

— Disha Chopra, Senior Manager, Product Line Manager, Juniper Networks

Sample Pages

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About the Author

Deepti Chandra is currently a Product Manager for the Routing Applications Group at Juniper Networks in Sunnyvale, California. She has multiple years of hands-on experience in versatile roles with pre-sales, operations and engineering, working closely with Data Center and Service Provider customers. Deepti holds M.S. degree in Telecommunications from University of Maryland, College Park.

Author Q & A

What got you started on this book?

[Deepti] EVPN is an evolving technology area. It is essentially a Swiss-knife approach for your layer 2 and layer 3 VPN needs. A unified protocol that is easy to adopt and can be easily cross leveraged across core, business edge, metro or data center needs. There is no surprise that there is a lot of interest amongst customers and in the technology industry overall. However, like with anything that is new, it takes time and effort to come up to speed with it. Particularly, in the data center domain, customers want a fungible architecture that can easily integrate with service devices/appliances like firewalls, load-balancers or interoperate with an SDN controller. Operators understand their requirements and challenges but they might not necessarily know how to apply EVPN to solve their problems. That was my primary motivation – to provide a starting point. Technical requirements will always be very diverse and specific to every deployment. But if you have a point of reference that guides you on how you can translate your data center requirements into an EVPN function, it makes a complicated topic easier to approach and consume for anyone. While I was trying to delve into the specifics of EVPN myself, staging POCs for different customers, I wanted to understand more than the theoretical piece. I wanted to learn what problem this would solve and I how do I get this working on different products. It so happens, that is what anyone who is looking to deploy EVPN from system engineers to network architects are looking for as well. For me, that learning process was hard work, that was built upon iteratively as I worked closely with varying DC and DCI requirements. I am hoping by incorporating that into this book, it can make it easy and help engineers understand how to translate their requirements with EVPN and more importantly, how to get it working.

Who is this book for?

[Deepti] Short answer – anyone who is interested in learning about EVPN-VXLAN and how to apply theoretical concepts into designing and architecting data center fabrics and interconnect solutions. A technical background or working knowledge with BGP and Layer 2/Layer 3 VPNs in general is helpful. System engineers, design architects or network operators can use this book accordingly, to delve into the necessary level of detail. The book opens with chapter 1 that gives you a bird’s eye view starting from the concept of network virtualization and gradually narrowing down further to the overlay specifics and related concepts for EVPN-VXLAN. Subsequent chapters in this book are structured with different case study examples that begin with building a data center fabric and then look at interconnecting these different data centers together. Each case study is laid out into a high-level overview, design summary and details configuration and traffic walkthroughs. This is aimed to be modular such that if readers only want to understand the design, they can skip the configuration and verification intricacies. The idea would be a user to understand their design requirements and then map that to the closest applicable case study. The reference case will then serve as an example on EVPN-VXLAN can be used to address those requirements with examples that can be further optimized to tailor to their exact needs.

After reading this book, what's the take away?

[Deepti] This book is not a marketing document. It is aimed to be detailed oriented. Main objective is to demonstrate working examples that can be used as plug and play in a lab environment. There are always different approaches to solve a problem, with each having associated pros and cons. It comes down to what best helps the reader address their target requirements. More importantly, having the flexibility to be able to orchestrate a design choice to solve common data center requirements on suitably positioned products. This book aims at tying all of that together. Whether a data center operator wants to achieve - layer stretch for its workloads within a DC or across DCs, integrate a firewall for policy enforcement or attain traffic optimization, this book aims to provide a one-stop shop. Borrow ideas, optimize and implement, it serves as a necessary reference on how to do so across Juniper MX, QFX and SRX products.

What are you hoping that people will learn from this book?

[Deepti] Using this book, I am hoping the user learns not just how to build a data center but even explore how to connect data centers together i.e. understand Data Center Interconnect (DCI) options. Like I have mentioned before, the primary purpose is to use this book to serve as a starting point. It gives you building blocks and a process on how to put them together. You can always mix and match the functional blocks across different case studies and optimize further to create a design that best suits your network.

What do you recommend as the next item to read after this book?

[Deepti] Many IETF drafts have emerged on the EVPN landscape and will continue to do so. The BGP Enables ServiceS (bess) working group has quite a few interesting reads available here: https://datatracker.ietf.org/wg/bess/documents/
I would certainly recommend looking at draft-ietf-bess-evpn-overlay-08 and draft-ietf-bess-evpn-prefix-advertisement-05, for starters.

What’s your favorite bit/part in the book?

[Deepti] I absolutely enjoyed structuring the design summary for each case study and the detailed logical diagrams to go with it. It was fun to be able to capture the content in my head in a picture, such that you get the reader gets the essence of it all in a single glance. Another fun aspect, was putting together the packet walk to identify the debugging techniques and commands to verify the right workflow. As important it is to have the right configuration knobs for effective operation, it is equally important to know what to look for and validate correct operation. Not only does this help from an operational perspective but also helps develop a solid understanding of the subject matter.