Puppet Labs and Arista Networks Partner to Enable Software Defined Networking

Puppet Labs, the leading provider of IT automation software, today announced the availability of a native Arista EOS (Extensible Operating System) Puppet agent and an Arista EOS module on the Puppet Forge. Now, joint Puppet Enterprise and Arista customers can extend Puppet’s management beyond servers and into the entire data center, making SDN a reality. With these integrations, Arista becomes the latest vendor to launch formal support through Puppet Labs’ Puppet Supported Program, a certification program that enables organizations to deploy software faster and with fewer errors, iterate more quickly, and rapidly adapt to fast-changing business needs.

Through server virtualization, cloud computing and software like Puppet, IT organizations have drastically reduced the time it takes to provision servers: what used to get done in weeks or months now gets done in minutes. But even as automation is being adopted more widely in IT, changes to networking equipment are all too often done manually, or rely on vendor-specific tools. Both of these tactics present barriers to the agility companies need to meet business demands in a fast-moving, competitive business landscape.

Technology research firm Gartner has pointed out the need to automate data center networking:

“SDN can help alleviate this issue by enabling automated provisioning of network services associated with a workload, and Gartner estimates this can reduce provisioning times for new applications by more than 80%, reducing typical turnaround times from weeks to days. In addition, this automated provisioning leads to higher network reliability and security because manual provisioning mistakes are significantly reduced,” from Gartner’s report, Mainstream Organizations Should Prepare for SDN Now by Andrew Lerner and Ronni J. Colville, March 18, 2014.

Coupling the power of the native Puppet agent with the power of Arista’s EOS allows teams to bypass the use of a proxy host and manage each network device as easily as any other Puppet node.

The Arista module is built on Puppet Labs’ NetDev standard for networking hardware support, allowing the same Puppet resources to manage different types of networking hardware with little to no modification. Puppet Labs provides full support of the Puppet agent to Puppet Enterprise customers, and Arista provides support for the Arista Puppet module.

“The EOS Puppet Agent highlights the programmability of Arista EOS, enabling integration of DevOps and NetOps for enterprises and service providers via automation,” said Ed Chapman, Vice President of Business Development and Alliances for Arista Networks. “With hundreds and thousands of compute, storage and network elements requiring maintenance and support, Arista and Puppet agents reduce ongoing operating expenses and increase data center automation.”

“Extending our leadership in IT automation to networking devices like Arista switches allows traditionally separate teams to work more closely, enabling DevOps practices like cross-functional collaboration,” said Nigel Kersten, CIO of Puppet Labs. “Now multiple teams can define all the necessary changes that need to be made across multiple servers and network topologies in Puppet, fully automating the deployment when ready. This further reduces human error, increases deployment speed and confidence, and gives far greater visibility into deployments.”

The Puppet Supported Program demonstrates a joint commitment to equipping customers with the tools to manage their infrastructure at the highest levels of reliability and performance. Puppet Labs and its partners have committed to creating joint solutions that enable automation of both platforms and devices with Puppet Enterprise. The Puppet Supported Program’s rigorous certification process delivers customers the benefits of fully tested and supported automation of all leading hardware in today’s data centers.

About Puppet Labs
Puppet Labs, Inc. is the leader in IT automation. Puppet Labs software provides system administrators the operational agility, efficiency and insight they need to proactively manage dynamic infrastructure, scaling from tens of servers to thousands, both on-premise and in the cloud. Thousands of the world’s leading organizations use Puppet Labs software to configure and manage their IT infrastructure, including Bank of America, Cisco, Citrix, eBay, NYSE, PayPal, Salesforce.com and WebEx. Based in Portland, Oregon, Puppet Labs employs 350 people. The company is backed by investors Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Google Ventures, VMware, Cisco, True Ventures, Radar Partners, and Emerson Street Partners. To learn more, please visit PuppetLabs.com.