Cisco ACI vs. Cisco APIC-EM

As of June 2019, Cisco ACI is ranked 2nd in Network Virtualization with 46 reviews vs Cisco APIC-EM which is ranked 4th in Network Virtualization with 1 review. The top reviewer of Cisco ACI writes "Provides integration with VMM domains and their L4 and L7 devices, like device packages for F5, Palo Alto, and ASA". The top reviewer of Cisco APIC-EM writes "Enabling business agility and accelerated time to market with the automated service delivery". Cisco ACI is most compared with VMware NSX, Cisco DNA Virtualization and Nuage Networks. Cisco APIC-EM is most compared with Cisco ACI, Cisco DNA Virtualization and VMware NSX.
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Cisco ACI Logo
10,219 views|5,757 comparisons
Cisco APIC-EM Logo
1,689 views|1,272 comparisons
Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco ACI vs. VMware NSX and other solutions. Updated: May 2019.
348,275 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

Pros
Cisco ACI can separate networks with a buoy interface. That is the most valuable feature.It is a complete re-write of everything that you've ever thought of from a networking standpoint.The most valuable features include microsegmentation, L3 Out features, and the common tenant and tenancy model.We are doing automation from ACI and we have integration with Azure. With the Azure stack integration we can have total automation. We can configure the EPGs from there, and we can configure load balancing functionalities from there as well. The most useful feature is that you don't need to configure anything on ACI itself. You can configure on Azure and it will provision your application.One area where it has an advantage... is that you're able to reuse a specific integration. If you add another server, you can use a specific integration and assign it to another port.The best part of ACI is that it can integrate with a lot of virtual environments like VMware, Hyper-V, and KVM.There are many features which are useful, like the automatic completion of the VXLAN.Now, our customers have tiers of management that have meetings with about the simplest tasks because it has to be approved from upper management and senior management and by the time it gets to the engineer that's going to deploy it, it takes way too long. With the solution, they can delegate a person who would be in charge of running the ACI as a whole, and it will be much faster because it doesn't have to go through the whole chain of command for the simple task of deploying one little machine on one port in the data center.

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Eliminating the IT administration silos for our datacenter and infrastructure by providing a single managed and converged infrastructure which provides unified compute, storage, and networking environment with a single point of management.Enabling business agility and accelerated time to market with the automated service delivery.The environment enables a DevOps culture, continuous delivery, and automated processes.

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Cons
I wish that if I had to open up an additional tab, I wouldn't have to log in every single time.It would be nice if I could specify network-centric in my design, and the system would organize and set itself up in that way.For Multipod we need Layer 3 devices that support multicast. Customers ask: "Why can't ACI do that? Why do we need a dedicated Layer 3 device for this?" If they go for Multi-Site there is no need for that, ACI can do it. So Cisco needs to increase the Multipod features in ACI.Where there is room for improvement from ACI is for Layer 2 and Layer 7 packages. Normally, when you're updating your ACI fabric or you're introducing new Layer 4 to Layer 7 devices, there are some constraints, there are some limitations... When you are doing device packages you will not have the functionality of ASM. It's like WAF, web application firewalls. So you need to configure it manually.One of the things that makes it a lot more complicated is the way contracts are handled in ACI. Contracts are like their own access lists. They can improve the setting up of contracts between devices a lot. It can be simplified.Better troubleshooting features would be helpful. In ACI, it can be a big mess, a real headache to troubleshoot a single issue... The troubleshooting part, and the information that ACI gives you, sometimes don't give you a proper, inside picture of what's going on within the fabric.They should improve the GUI, make it simpler. They also need to improve its integration with other automation tools.I would like for there to be more information about it available. While using the ACI in the graphical interface, I would like if there was something that explained every step that you can click and it will tell you what you are doing in more detail.

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Need a better workflow definition tool with tracking on existing provisioned services, and to improve multitasking in the workflow automation.

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Pricing and Cost Advice
If you compare the licensing and total cost of ACI, it's cheaper than NSX because of the licensing fees. If you are going for full NSX features it will be too expensive, especially the next-generation firewalling feature.We don't use all of the features but it's still worth the money.It's expensive but the product is very good. I have never found another partner like Cisco with a solution like this and with great support.Once you sign for the start kit implementation, you have to go all the way through to the implementation, even if you are experiences issues.A big company can automate it themselves or spend a lot of money and buy it.We have saved time on the provisioning and configuration.We used Cisco Professional Services for the deployment. They were outstanding, but very expensive.Price is always an issue.

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Ranking
2nd
Views
10,219
Comparisons
5,757
Reviews
43
Average Words per Review
484
Avg. Rating
8.0
4th
Views
1,689
Comparisons
1,272
Reviews
1
Average Words per Review
147
Avg. Rating
8.0
Top Comparisons
Compared 69% of the time.
Compared 8% of the time.
Compared 52% of the time.
Compared 13% of the time.
Also Known As
Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller Enterprise Module
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Cisco
Cisco
Overview
Cisco Application-Centric Infrastructure (ACI) reduces TCO, automates IT tasks, and accelerates data center application deployments. It accomplishes this using a business-relevant Software Defined Networking (SDN) policy model across networks, servers, storage, security, and services.

APIC-EM is a central part of Cisco Digital Network Architecture. It delivers software-defined networking to the enterprise branch, campus, and WAN. Its simple user interface lets you automate policy-based application profiles. With this module, IT can respond rapidly to new business opportunities. 

Offer
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Learn more about Cisco APIC-EM
Sample Customers
Bowling Green State University, du, Qatar University
Information Not Available
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco ACI vs. VMware NSX and other solutions. Updated: May 2019.
348,275 professionals have used our research since 2012.
We monitor all Network Virtualization reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.

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