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2008: Bigger Networks and the DNS Boogyman
We may take how we connect to the Internet for granted, but 2008 was a very big year for networking, good and bad.
December 17, 2008
By Sean Michael Kerner: More stories by this author:
What a year for networking! No, not on Facebook or LinkedIn, but in how people actually connected to the Internet before they hooked into their social networks.
This year, the networking industry faced down its most serious security challenge in the last twenty years. In addition, 2008 will be noted as the year in which the world's biggest networking vendor launched a barrage of new product lines, and when IPv6 (define) became a matter of public policy. Plus, we saw the future of high speed networking truly revealed.
In day 3 of InternetNews.com's week-plus look at the top stories, events and issues of all things tech in 2008, we highlight some of the networking advances that hummed away underneath all that social networking chatter.
Is DNSSEC the Answer to Internet Security?
Juniper Makes The Switch
Nortel Sheds Billions and its CTO
Alcatel-Lucent Loses Its Leadership
Web Doomsday Averted: Kaminsky
Cisco Turns Routers Into Linux Application Servers
Juniper, Cisco Fight for Carrier Cash
What's Next for IPv6 in the U.S.?
For more stories on this topic:
One word: Kaminsky
The Kaminsky DNS flaw was a major event in 2008. Why? Because the threat it presented to DNS went to the core of how networks and the Internet function. Dubbed the Kaminsky DNS flaw after security researcher Dan Kaminsky revealed the vulnerability, the problem, if not repaired, could have left hundreds of millions of people at risk of malicious code and network problems.
Networking vendors and application vendors alike rallied to Kaminsky's cry and put out a short term solution. The long-term solution was DNSSEC (DNS Security Extentions). As a result of the Kaminsky flaw detection, the protocol got a much needed shot in the arm and industry efforts are now underway to get it implemented.
Networking Vendors Roll Big Iron
Gifts for All in Linux 2.6.28
Micron Sends Stocks Higher
Notebooks Top Desktop Sales Ahead of Schedule
Lessig: Abolish the FCC
RIM Takes Motorola to Court Over Hiring
The world's largest networking vendor by revenue, Cisco had a big year in 2008. It began by rolling out an ambitious new switching platform, the Nexus. At a time when many in the technology industry assume that commodity silicon and microprocessors are the way to go, Cisco sunk $250 million into a new routing platform.
The Cisco Nexus, which debuted in March, is powered by Cisco's own Quantum Flow processor. Cisco Chambers also embarked on a new Linux strategy in April 2008. The Cisco Application eXtension Platform (AXP) plugs in the Cisco's ISR platform, which provide users with a Linux application server.
But Cisco's competitors also busted a few moves of their own in 2008. Juniper Networks jumped into the switching business and challenged Cisco for business in the high speed networking space. Alcatel-Lucent changed its leadership and Nortel Networks continued to shed dollars and staff.
Blazing Networks with 100 GbE
The big game for the networking industry has always been about faster networking speeds. In 2008, we saw the first real signs of the next big thing in network connection speeds, the race towards 100GbE. While the specification has not yet been finalized 2008 saw the first live tests of 100GbE. It's a technology that will be exciting to see mature in 2009 and beyond as the new top end of networking.
Hello Internet? It's IPv6; you're almost out of space
Though IPv4 address space continues to race towards exhaustion, some glimmers of salvation appeared in 2008. The watershed event for IPv6 in 2008 was the June U.S. government mandate that required all federal agencies to be IPv6-compliant. What it means is that every U.S. government agency was able to prove they could send and receive IPv6 traffic. The mandate does not mean the U.S. government is using IPv6 for all of its day to day traffic, but getting the government behind it is a major milestone on the road towards an IPv6 world.