Dell EMC adds massive software options to Virtual Edge Platform with ADVA Ensemble partnership

The partnership with ADVA Ensemble bundles a library of over 50 third party solutions into Dell’s VEP platform, with partners being able to pick and choose the ones that fit their business.

Dell EMC VEP 4600

Dell EMC expanded their open networking strategy a year ago with the introduction of the Virtual Edge Platform [VEP] family, a hardware solution for the SD-WAN market. Today, they are significantly expanding its capabilities – and options for channel partners – through a new partnership with German firm ADVA which will make the ADVA Ensemble software and its library of over 50 VNFs [Virtual Network Functions] available as a bundle with the Dell EMC hardware.

“A challenge for organizations as they modernize is determining what to virtualize after the SD-WAN,” said Bob Yee, Head of SD-WAN Product Marketing at Dell EMC. ”Our VEP provides a general purpose networking platform to deliver uCPE [universal customer premises equipment], a network optimized x86 based server where we can layer VNF functions on top. uCPE requires that customized platform to host the networking on, because of heavy network-specific requirements for things like encryption and acceleration.”

Munich, Germany-based ADVA makes a broad range of higher-end networking components. Their ADVA Ensemble software is one of these. Here, it extends the capabilities of the VEP by providing over 50 VNF capabilities through verified integrations with third party vendors, to provide a broad choice of software functionality like virtual firewall, WAN Optimization, IoT, virtual test, voice, and wireless. The Ensemble Connector’s enhanced management and orchestration  capabilities brings these together to create a very high level of operational simplicity.

“ADVA Ensemble provides what is essentially a middle layer of virtualization,” Yee said. “The most impressive part is the 50-plus VNF vendors they partner with. They have almost an App Store approach, and are very unique in this respect. Because they know that everything will work, it makes it easy for customers to modernize their networks.”

A mutual customer, a very larger service provider partner, suggested that the two companies work together, which is what brought them together.

“This is an ideal partnership,” Yee said. “They are very unique in these relationships they have, and they bring this plethora of software functionality, this huge library of software. We supply the hardware component – the hotrodded uCPE – and the distribution channel.”  VEP’s open Intel architecture-based platform supports the operation of multiple simultaneous VNFs.

The Dell EMC VEP platform will now come prebundled with the ADVA Ensemble software.

“Customers gain from having access to this large array of software, and the certainty that the bundle will work together properly with the hardware,” Yee said. “It’s easy to order, and support is one call to Dell.”

The partnership also brings specific new advantages for channel partners as well.

“A lot of partners have distinct specialties from anything like finance to the Internet of Things,” Yee said. “With the broad range of functions that ADVA Ensemble brings, partners will be able to literally pick and choose what ones they want for their specialization and what works best in their practice. There is no other prebundled combination like this out there, with the software and hardware validated and working together.”

The bundled solution is available in the United States now. Worldwide availability is scheduled for the end of this month.