The Network Edge (NE for short) is a dynamic platform that allows the selection, configuration and activation of network services into production in near real time. This can be done through the Equinix Cloud Exchange portal or via RESTful API web services.
NE includes a marketplace of available vendor-sponsored virtual images, an open source x86-based infrastructure platform that's optimized for the instant deployment, and config-ready interconnection of network services.
NE enables a variety of use cases where time to market, proximity to the edge of major content and Enterprise services, minimizing touch points and other key requirements are a factor. Our vision is that NE users can perform the following in minutes:
- Select an appropriate network service and/or vendor to match your immediate or long-term needs (e.g. a Cisco router or a Juniper firewall)
- Choose the right licensing structure that works for your organization (either bring your own license or use Equinix's managed subscription service where available)
- Configure the device with basic settings in the portal or via API
- Deploy the device in the desired Equinix location around the globe
- Create connections to other devices, other Equinix services (such as Cloud Exchange Fabric) or access the device directly to implement additional configurations just as you would any other network equipment
Network Edge Use Cases
Because the NE platform is so versatile, there are many use cases that can be satisfied by deploying one or more options in the portfolio of available features and services. For example:
- SDWAN Control: Deploy edge collection and centralization points for many remote or premise devices to home into for access to data inside clouds or other content providers privately
- Multi-cloud and hybrid cloud privacy: Route traffic directly between two or more clouds and content providers for optimized performance instead of “hairpinning” it back to remote or far end data centers or collection points
- Cloud migration: Migrate data between clouds globally
- Enter new markets: Forward deploy into new markets temporarily or permanently for new reach and local traffic termination and routing
- Remote Collection, processing: Collect cloud and internet traffic into centralized and remote points, process it there, and then backhaul what you need to on-premise resources
- Perform complex routing functions without a physical presence from a neutral location (such as NAT, IPSec tunneling, route filtering, BGP peering, etc)
- Save money on egress, transit fees; and achieve better performance by using neutral Internet or network provider services instead of lock-in to a cloud’s network offers
Some of these use cases are discussed in more detail in later articles.
Deployment Guide Overview
The following articles go into significant detail about the platform, its architecture, services, network design and engineering, and other topics. The deployment guide assists in making appropriate decisions about your overall solution and strategy with Network Edge as a tool.
We encourage you to consult this guide as needed to understand a specific service you are trying, or solution design considerations. As always, Equinix personnel are happy to help, as well. Our Global Solution Architects, Sales Engineers and others are experts in helping you design a global architecture to suit your needs, or answer quick questions about a specific topic.
The documents are constantly evolving and we encourage your feedback or comments on how to make it better.
If you’re looking for guidance on the tactical clicks and scrolls of the website, you may also be interested in the User Guide. The User Guide focuses on the process and steps needed to complete most major tasks in the portal, including creating connection and adding an SSH user. This deployment guide focuses more on what the network flow of the connection is, or why you would want to add a new user to your device credentials.
Articles in this Deployment Guide
- Platform Architecture: detailed description of the network and systems that underpin the product, their specs and other relevant information
- Coming Soon Platform Security and Hardening: statement of the way we build and architect to protect your devices, data, and procedures from malicious or accidental events
- Coming Soon Choosing The Right Device: walk-through of the currently supported devices, types, and what to expect from each. test results where relevant
- Device Configuration: How Equinix loads a new configuration (in general terms; per device may differ slightly), the interfaces, what is reserved for Equinix operations/support, etc
- Services: description of each additional service that can be added to a device, its parameters, business rules, and when a user can perform which activities per service
- Connecting Virtual And Physical Environments: Basic guidance on connecting virtual devices with colo, ports, network connections, or other use cases
- Architecting for High Availability: How Equinix designs for HA, and the features and configurability of HA as a service; options and considerations for different architectures
- Coming Soon Vendor and Device Onboarding: statement of the tests and gates that Equinix runs each vendor through before offering the device on the platform; use it as an interested vendor or to gather details and peace of mind about your devices and the rigor they are subjected to
- Coming Soon Device Management And Lifecycle: Once your devices are up and running, what to expect during maintenance, outages, reboots, loading new images or versions, editing and updating etc.