Juniper Apstra: Taking Multivendor Intent-based Data Center Automation to the Next Level
by Ron Westfall | January 31, 2023

The News:  Juniper reported that its Juniper Apstra multivendor intent-based data center automation platform grew by more the 170% in 2022. Read the Juniper blog here.

Juniper Apstra: Taking Multivendor Intent-based Data Center Automation to the Next Level

Analyst Take: Juniper reported that its Juniper Apstra platform grew 170% in 2022 and now has hundreds of companies as customers. In September 2022, Juniper introduced Apstra Freeform Reference Designs that is designed to extend automation to any data center, using any vendor, any typology, and any network design and geared toward strengthening the overall Apstra proposition. Additionally, Juniper rolled out a new pricing structure, aimed at providing low-cost entry points to lower risk and ease adoption.

Juniper’s Apstra targets advancing mutivendor fabric automation and management to give customers the flexibility to change equipment according to their business priorities and avoid vendor lock-in. Key to Apstra’s ongoing and future market progress, from my view, is intent-based networking (IBN) playing an ever more critical role at improving data center fabric capabilities with Apstra automatically handling key functions such as rest-device configurations and OS upgrades.

By continuously monitoring the operating environment to ensure the execution of intent, Apstra enables customers to define their data center blueprint and grow their data centers according to their top business priorities and not become hamstrung on the update cycles of suppliers. Additionally, I view Juniper’s Connected Security portfolio as vital to assuring users, data, applications, and customers all have integrated, built-in security regardless of deployment context.

Juniper is now unveiling Apstra 4.1.2 to further augment the Apstra proposition. From my view, the new release’s support of additional Arista, Cisco, and Dell platforms and operating systems, as well as VMWare NSX-T 3.2 integration to automate VLAN deployments and configuration validation, as further burnishing Apstra’s multi-vendor credentials.

The latest release provides Freeform enhancements to streamline and automate resource allocation geared toward further improving the user experience. Apstra now also supports improved bulk operations by pushing out configurations in bulk across hundreds of routing zones, virtual networks, and racks.

I view Apstra also gaining a key sales and marketing boost with the intent-based analytics (IBA) enhancements that aid organization-wide reliability goals by tracking additional environmental conditions such as temperature, fan status, power consumption, and optical transceiver health which can help decrease the risk of outages and hardware failures.

Key Takeaways: New Juniper Apstra Release Sharpens IBN Capabilities

From my view, the new Apstra 4.1.2 release gives Juniper new sales and marketing momentum by further strengthening its multivendor IBN data center automation, particularly against rival solutions such as Red Hat Ansible Core, NetBrain, and Cisco PL LMS, as data center automation and management competition intensifies in the swiftly evolving data center realm.

Overall, I believe the new release further sharpens Apstra’s IBN capabilities, especially in providing a unified solution that can streamline the design, development, deployment, and operation of data center networks while continuously validating that the network remains aligned with prioritized business outcomes. This includes bringing together the operations and architecture units, decreasing human capital constraints and reliability concerns while accelerating deployment and activation.

Disclosure: Futurum Research is a research and advisory firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this article. The author does not hold any equity positions with any company mentioned in this article.

Analysis and opinions expressed herein are specific to the analyst individually and data and other information that might have been provided for validation, not those of Futurum Research as a whole.

Other insights from Futurum Research:

Juniper Boosts Data Center Management and Architectural Flexibility with Apstra Freeform Launch

Juniper Q3 2022 Earnings: Solid Results and Doing Well During a Challenging Stretch for Most of Tech

Juniper Expands Cloud Metro Portfolio to Power Sustainable Business Growth

Image Credit: FXDailyReport

About the Author

Ron is an experienced research expert and analyst, with over 20 years of experience in the digital and IT transformation markets. He is a recognized authority at tracking the evolution of and identifying the key disruptive trends within the service enablement ecosystem, including software and services, infrastructure, 5G/IoT, AI/analytics, security, cloud computing, revenue management, and regulatory issues. Read Full Bio.