This chapter began with a discussion about the CIO’s dilemma in moving to the cloud and how the network can catalyze the confident adoption of cloud services by enterprises. However, the role of the network does not stop here, and in fact it is poised to become even more critical as we enter the world of many clouds and the bigger cloud brought on by the rapid growth of the Internet of Things. In addition, we explored how providers can monetize their investment in the network and offer network services in the service catalog for consumption through an API or a web portal. These services can be ordered individually or via abstracted network container models. Finally, we discussed how today’s networks are evolving to meet the challenges of the cloud model.
This chapter explored the role of the network in enabling the success of business-grade cloud services, which is the central theme of this book. Subsequent chapters in this book build on the concepts discussed here and extend them to the different areas of the network involved with the cloud (DC networks, the WAN/NGN, and the enterprise network) and tie them together end to end, from the production point all the way to the consumption point.