2019-07-29 05:23:00 UTC

What is the biggest difference between Cisco ACI and VMware NSX?

One of the most popular comparisons on IT Central Station is Cisco ACI vs VMware NSX.

People like you are trying to decide which one is best for their company. Can you help them out?

What is the biggest difference between Cisco ACI and VMware NSX? Which of these two solutions would you recommend to a colleague evaluating network virtualization software and why?

Thanks for helping your peers make the best decision!

22 Answers
author avatar
Real User

As per my understanding/view, if the company has workloads that are all virtualized and have a VMware hypervisor then it is advisable to use VMware NSX as it can give a lot of integration between VMware other components.

If the company has a mix of environments in terms of workload (physical + virtual) and a mix of hypervisors (VMware, Hyper-V, KVM ) then it is advisable to use Cisco ACI. Apart from these Cisco ACI can provide a lot of benefits to the network professionals as the fabric which is built with Cisco ACI has multiple benefits eg given below:
1) No spanning tree, No Layer 2 loops as it is Layer 3 Fabric
2) VXLAN Auto configuration by which the server can be placed anywhere in the data center
3) Unicast Routing
4) Multiple paths for traffic to traverse
5) Single point of configuration.
Overall, Cisco ACI provides a stable underlay platform for network professionals along with the benefit of automation and orchestration. The final decision is contingent on the company environment, type of workloads, and cost factor in order to decide which technology to go with; Cisco ACI, or VMware NSX.

2019-08-09 05:20:20 UTC
author avatar

I've been interested in both for a long time and two key differences for me were:
- Network (controller) overlay vs. host overlay solution (I trusted better network overlay)
- Cost - originally ACI deployment required higher end very expensive (Nexus 7K) platforms but that changed significantly with new Nexus 9K
models that are much less expensive now.

2019-08-08 16:18:43 UTC
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