The Quiet Tech War: Google vs Cisco – DNS Is The Internet Oxygen – Cisco Does Deal With Infoblox on DNS At The Edge Speaks Volumes

Network World is reporting that Cisco has done deal with Infoblox for managing DNS at the edge. In enterprise speak this is about the branch office – in tech speak this is about intelligent addressing and control of the edge. Infoblox vNIOS™ software for Cisco Integrated Services Routers (ISRs) empowers branch offices by automating core network services, providing the performance benefits of local service delivery with unparalleled resiliency and centralized visibility while reducing branch network capital and operating expenses.

Here is Yankee group perspective worth noting on this Cisco Infoblox announcement…“Remember the ‘Trapper Keeper?’ That’s what Cisco’s routers are becoming for enterprise branch office: a single place to keep all critical network applications and services,” says Phil Hochmuth, senior analyst at Yankee Group. “This is being enabled largely by the AXP, which allows organizations to cram as many services — even ones beyond Cisco’s own scope, such as Infoblox IP address management — onto a single platform.” …hmmm DNS in core and edge routers.. hmmm policy at the edge… interesting.

There is a bigger picture here. DNS is the small little Internet feature that will be the focal point for the upcoming Internet war between Google and networking vendors including Cisco. Why? DNS is the Internet Oxygen. DNS made Google – no DNS – no URLs; no URLs – no Web; no Web and URLs -no search. Here we go again except instead of web pages and search, we have web services up for grabs – that includes enterprise and cloud services.

Having a technology that is automated and programmable (i.e. policy) will gives the winner the viable solution to deliver the next generation search and application paradigm from advertising to brokering transactions.

Over the past 8 years insiders at Cisco have been debating the future of Cisco. Many back in 2000 were arguing internally at Cisco that they have to “move up the stack”. Well they never did it. In fact Cisco has been spending a ton of time rewriting IOS and figuring out what to do. Meanwhile back in 2000 a little growing company named Google was scaling their DNS offering (aka URL search) to take over the online advertising market. Now it’s apparent that Google has a mission in the cloud and networking space – they have been moving down the stack – right into Ciscoland.

This middle ground (Cisco moving up and Google moving down the stack) will be where the battle of the titans will take place. This feature from Cisco is an indicator of what the battle will be for.

Update: I just found out that this has not been officially announced yet. I believe it will be discussed here at this event in San Jose this week.

Author: John

Entrepreneur living in Palo Alto California and the Founder of SiliconANGLE Media

8 thoughts on “The Quiet Tech War: Google vs Cisco – DNS Is The Internet Oxygen – Cisco Does Deal With Infoblox on DNS At The Edge Speaks Volumes”

  1. I appreciate your major point re: the battle between Cisco and Google, but I wouldn’t say definitively that Cisco hasn’t moved “up the stack”. It’s definitely true that revenues from switchers/routers eclipses all other categories, but it’s not for lack of trying. They have WebEx. They a presence server. They have contact center, IVR and telephony applications. They are sort of low level, but they are instances where Cisco has made modest forays into higher levels and even bent themselves out of shape to come up with a concept like the Services Oriented Network Architecture (SONA), to rival SOA.

    The Cisco versus Google framework is thought-provoking and I appreciate that. But it’s something of a middleware story and that’s where I think IBM, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP are bound to have some influence as well. As Google moves down into the muck, it will be confronted on all sides. Everybody likes to take on a firm who’s motto is to “do no harm.” What harm can it do?

  2. Dan,
    Great points and love the “muck” reference it ..it’s muck alright. The problem with Google is that discovery and navigation have DNS at the core on the web. To the extent that DNS stops becoming the underpinning of web discovery and navigation then this battle line is interesting to me. For web 1.0 it was search navigation and web 2.0 will be all things web navigation (apps, services, and ??? other muck).

    Cisco factions have been formed for years on what the definition of ‘moving up the stack’ means. Maybe we’ll see something from Cisco on this front soon.

  3. I do believe that its a smart move for Cisco to move “up the stack” … particularly in the area of DNS, DHCP, and other network infrastructure services where they are able to add value.

    As network security becomes more and more important, and cloud computing continues to grow, the ability to integrate dynamic DNS, DHCP, and virtualized LANs/WANs into a managed solution has a tremendous amount of value.

    There are a lot of interesting things that you can do when you begin to make the network infrastructure more intelligent … and doing it from the edges in a distributed fashion helps also!

  4. I was one of those people who advocated for moving up the stack. They must! I spent 2001-02 working with Cisco on a navigation server for edge policy “paid” navigation. After a year it got canceled internally because they didn’t want to move up the stack.

  5. Just to understand, is there a UDDI angle to this? If so, doesn’t Cisco already have a UDDI Gateway product. It strikes me that Google’s vaunted algorithm for dynamic search and the like is orthogonal to what Cisco might be able to do by “managing DNS at the edge”. I know I lack imagination, but I would think that both Cisco and Google can avert direct confrontation by supporting API’s that grok UDDI.

    Excuse me while I look up more stuff about OpenDNS.

  6. Hello!!!
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