R&E Networking Leaders Gather at Quilt 2013 Winter Meeting
Program highlights included trends in large-scale research and leading-edge applications for R&E
Seattle, February 27, 2013 – More than 100 leaders from research and education (R&E) networking organizations gathered at The Quilt’s Winter Member Meeting to discuss top technology trends and leading-edge applications for the R&E community. The meeting was held near the campus of University of California San Diego in La Jolla, California February 5-7. The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional R&E networks.
Sessions from the meeting focused on key developments in advanced networking to support large-scale, data-driven research. Eli Dart, network engineer of ESnet, presented on big data trends for researchers and provided insights into how regional networks might adapt to the requirements of extreme-data science. A panel of Quilt leaders shared perspectives on their organizations’ efforts to meet the challenges of supporting trends in big data for researchers, including the deployment of 100G infrastructure and software-defined networking.
The program continued with featured presentations on federal legislation of interest to Quilt members related to network architectures, security and telecommunications.
Also on the agenda was an opportunity for Quilt members to share communications strategies and learnings refined as a result of a series of outreach and advocacy workshops hosted by The Quilt in 2012. A team from Quilt member OneNet in Oklahoma presented on their experiences implementing its communication strategies. As Quilt members support R&E in a highly changing and technically complex environment, smaller groups convened at the meeting for focused discussions on such topics as OpenFlow and “above-the-net services” for Quilt member constituent groups.
“As a leader of a research and education networking organization, The Quilt member meeting programs strongly reflect my organization’s priority interests and ensure the opportunity for me to informally network with my national colleagues to exchange experiences and ideas,” said Cort Buffington, executive director, Kansas Research and Education Network or KanREN.
“Regional R&E networks often face common challenges, such as rapid technology change or pressures on traditional business models and thus we can learn a great deal from each other,” said Jen Leasure, president and CEO, The Quilt. “The Quilt’s biannual member meetings are designed to inform our members on topics that are of key interest to the regional networks as well as to provide the forum for our members to leverage one another’s knowledge and expertise to collectively advance networking for research and education.”
Immediately after the Member Meeting, The Quilt jointly hosted a first-of-its-kind Federated Identity and Access Management Workshop with InCommon, the identity management federation for U.S. R&E. The workshop was designed to develop a new distributed framework for federation that would extend InCommon Federation Services to K-12 and other community anchor institutions in collaboration with regional networks.
Quilt Announces OpenFlow Switch Authorized Quilt Providers
Five vendors identified to partner with research and education community on OpenFlow-based solutions and initiatives
Seattle, October 24, 2012 – The Quilt, the national coalition of advanced regional research and education (R&E) networks, announces that five equipment providers have been selected as OpenFlow Switch Authorized Quilt Providers (AQP’s): Brocade; HP via reseller partner Matrix Integration; IBM; NEC Corporation of America; and Pica8.
One of the missions of the R&E community is to engage with its many partners, including industry, to design, develop and support experimental, leading-edge technologies in order to drive advancements in academic networking and research. To help support this mission of the community it serves, The Quilt released its National Request for Proposal (RFP) for OpenFlow-Enabled Network Switches in May with the objectives of:
- defining a preferred set of configurations for OpenFlow-enabled equipment for the research and education community
- providing a sensible set of switch options for regional and campus networks to purchase OpenFlow-enabled equipment
- promoting and enabling software-defined networking capabilities to scale to more regional and campus networks by leveraging the R&E community’s collective experience and interest in software-defined networking
- identifying and partnering with equipment providers who are creating a new development platform around the ideas of OpenFlow
Jen Leasure, president and CEO of The Quilt, stated, “OpenFlow and more generally software-defined networking offer important new sets of choices for Quilt members and their Authorized Buyers to consider, as they seek to more efficiently and flexibly deliver advanced network services and applications to diverse and growing constituencies within their states and regions. By qualifying the AQP’s we are announcing today, The Quilt seeks to make it easier for our members to identify and, if in the interests of their stakeholders, to adopt OpenFlow technologies optimized for R&E environments.”
Each of the AQP’s met the current set of preferred features and configurations as outlined in the RFP. Each demonstrated a willingness to partner with the R&E community to create a new development platform around the ideas of OpenFlow and also provides a unique set of capabilities to contribute to a suite of switch options for regional and campus networks. A willingness to perform third-party interoperability testing with other OpenFlow-enabled switches was also a key selection criterion.
Effective immediately the AQP’s are authorized to sell to Quilt member networks and their Authorized Quilt Buyers under a Quilt Pricing Agreement initially valid for 12 months with option for renewal if mutually agreeable to The Quilt and the AQP.
About The Quilt
The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional networks for research and education, representing 31 networks across the country. Participants in The Quilt provide advanced network services and applications to over 200 universities and thousands of other educational institutions. For more information, visit www.thequilt.net.
The Quilt Announces New 2013 Executive Committee Members
The Quilt Board of Directors recently completed its annual election for The Quilt Executive Committee. The Quilt is pleased to announce three new members will join the Committee in 2013 for two-year terms: Jeff Custard, Network Engineering Manager, University Center for Atmospheric Research and Front Range GigaPoP; Tim Lance, president and Chair, NYSERNet; and Dave Reese, vice president and Chief Technology Officer, CENIC. The nine-member Executive Committee provides ongoing oversight of Quilt affairs as delegated by the full Board.
The Board also completed its officer elections for 2013. Don Welch, president and CEO of Merit Network, was elected to the office of Vice Chairman for 2013. In accordance with Quilt bylaws, the 2012 Vice Chairman, Claude Garelik, Systems IT Security Officer for the South Dakota Board of Regents and Chairman of the Board for the Great Plains Network, was elected to the Chair position for this year. Claude replaces Wendy Huntoon, Director of Networking at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center and Executive Director of the Three Rivers Optical Exchange.
“As a member-powered organization, The Quilt is very fortunate to not only have a tremendous breadth of talent among our members but also the strong commitment of these individuals who are remarkable in their leadership contributions to advanced regional networking in support of research and education,” said Jen Leasure, Quilt president and CEO. “I congratulate the new Executive Committee members on their election and look forward to continuing our work together for another highly productive year for the organization.”
About The Quilt
The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional networks for research and education, representing 31 networks across the country. Participants in The Quilt provide advanced network services and applications to over 250 universities and thousands of other educational institutions.
Record Attendance at Quilt 2012 Fall Meeting
Program highlights included top tech trends and leading-edge applications for R&E
Seattle, October 8 – With over 75 participants from research and education (R&E) networking organizations, The Quilt’s 2012 Fall Member Meeting was The Quilt’s most attended event to date. The meeting was held on the campus of Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio September 11-13 in conjunction with the 25th anniversary celebration of Quilt member Ohio Academic Resources Network (OARnet). The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional R&E networks.
Sessions focused on transformational technologies for R&E networks, including 100G infrastructure and software-defined networking. Quilt members planning to deploy 100G networks addressed the drivers for their deployments and the goals each organization aims to achieve with the new infrastructure. Regional network implementations of software-defined networking were presented, along with an update on The Quilt’s recent OpenFlow Request for Proposal.
Don Welch, president and CEO of Quilt member Merit Network, discussed the new cyber range that Merit is creating and how it will serve as a live testbed for critical cyber security research and innovation.
A Quilt member panel talked about new value-added services they are rolling out, including managing identity and access management at the state level; the role of regional networks in support of mobile device management and wireless access for campuses; and a report on the increasing number of partnerships among regional networks for member services.
The program also featured guest speakers from NOAA and the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN). Paul Schultz of NOAA’s Earth System Resource Laboratory discussed NOAA’s N-Wave Network and its importance to NOAA’s weather forecasting models. The N-Wave infrastructure is the result of a longer-standing partnership with the R&E community. Keith Krueger, CoSN CEO, shared his perspective on the top emerging technologies and trends likely to have the greatest impact on K-12 education.
“As a leader of a research and education networking organization, The Quilt member meetings are the most valuable meetings I attend all year,” said Dan O’Hanlon, director, West Virgina Network for Educational Telecomputing or WVNET.
“In addition to having a program agenda that reflects our members’ priority areas of interest, another equally important objective of The Quilt’s biannual member meetings is ensuring lots of opportunities for informal networking and exchange of experiences,” said Jen Leasure, president and CEO, The Quilt. “Regional R&E networks often face common challenges, such as rapid technology change or pressures on traditional business models, and thus we can learn a great deal from each other.”
Immediately after the Member Meeting, The Quilt hosted an optional Communications and Outreach Workshop for its membership. Focus was on helping R&E networks build the skills and capacity to communicate about their organizations and their impact on their respective communities.
About The Quilt
The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional networks for research and education, representing 31 networks across the country. Participants in The Quilt provide advanced network services and applications to over 200 universities and thousands of other educational institutions. For more information, visit www.thequilt.net
NJEDge, WVNET Join The Quilt
Seattle, July 13, 2012 – The Quilt, the national coalition of advanced regional networks for research and education, welcomes new members NJEDge and West Virginia Network (WVNET). NJEDge and WVNET join 29 other regional and state networks from around the country participating in The Quilt.
“By joining The Quilt, NJEDge staff will have the opportunity to work more closely together and to share best practices with peers from other research and education networks, not only on a broad range of IT issues but on other areas of interest to research and education, such as community building and faculty development,” stated George Laskaris, President and CEO, NJEDge.
“WVNET views The Quilt as the best national forum for the exchange of ideas between regional education networks,” according to Dan O’Hanlon, director, WVNET. “As a Quilt member, WVNET will be able to more effectively join with other education networks in shaping the evolution of networks to enhance the service that all of us are able to provide to our constituents.”
“NJEDge and WVNET are highly regarded, not only for their research and education networking leadership in their respective geographies, but also for their contributions to economic development and public service,” said Jen Leasure, president and CEO, The Quilt. “We are thrilled to have them join The Quilt and look forward to a long and productive collaboration towards our shared goals.”
West Virginia Network for Educational Telecomputing (WVNET) is a dynamic service organization providing telecommunications and computing services within West Virginia. Currently focused on state colleges and universities and administered by these entities, WVNET is transitioning to expand its impact by offering services to state government, K-12, public libraries and county government. For more information on WVNET, visit www.wvnet.edu.
NJEDge.Net is a non-profit technology consortium of academic and research institutions in New Jersey. Through its deployment of advanced Internet technologies and digital communication, NJEDge.Net supports its members in their institutional teaching and learning; scholarship; research and development; outreach programs; public service, and economic development. Additional details on NJEDge.NET available at www.njedge.net.
About The Quilt
The Quilt is the national coalition of advanced regional networks for research and education, representing 29 networks across the country. Participants in The Quilt provide advanced network services and applications to over 200 universities and thousands of other educational institutions. Please visit www.thequilt.net to learn more about The Quilt.
The Quilt Releases National RFP for OpenFlow Enabled Network Switches
The Quilt, Inc. (The Quilt) is a collaboration of advanced regional network organizations. It is a dynamic forum where leaders from throughout the advanced research and education network community build on the intellectual capital and best practices of network service providers worldwide. Based on the participants’ combined experiences in operations and development of leading edge technologies, The Quilt aims to influence the national agenda on information technology infrastructure, with particular emphasis on networking. Through this coalition, The Quilt promotes delivery of networking services at lower cost, higher performance, greater reliability, and heightened security. The Quilt derives support and primary funding from its participants. For a full listing and description of each of the current Quilt participants, please see
There is a well-defined track record of success for companies who have created meaningful partnerships with this leading-edge networking community. Quilt organizations and the institutions they connect are consistently early adopters of new technologies, including but not limited to network technologies and ways of implementing them. The Quilt also leads the curve in finding new ways to organize networks to multi-organizational benefit. Our unsurpassed level of expertise in the customer community has been a valuable resource to our industry partners.
2012 OpenFlow Switch RFP Documents Open Flow Switch RFP
Goals of the OpenFlow Switch RFP
One of the missions of the research and education community is to engage with its many partners, including industry, to design, develop and support experimental, leading edge technologies in order to drive advancements in academic networking and research. The goals of this RFP effort are to:
- define a preferred set of configurations for OpenFlow enabled equipment for the research and education community
- provide a sensible set of switch options for Regional and campus networks to purchase OpenFlow enabled equipment
- promote and enable software -defined networking capabilities to scale to more regional and campus networks by leveraging our community’s collective experience and interest in software-defined networking
- identify and partner with equipment providers who are creating a new development platform around the ideas of OpenFlow
The Quilt's 2012 OpenFlow Switch RFP Revised Schedule
|RFP Release||May 11, 2012|
|Non-Binding Letter of Intent to Respond Due||
May 21, 2012
Due Date for OpenFlow RFP Submission to The Quilt (11:59 pm EST)
June 22, 2012
Providers Selected to be OpenFlow Switch Authorized Quilt Provider (AQP)
August 13, 2012
OpenFlow Switch Master Services Agreement Signed
Week of September 24, 2012
OpenFlow Switch AQP Now Authorized to Sell Under Quilt Pricing Agreement
|Week of September 24, 2012|
Summary of The Quilt's OpenFlow RFP Question and Answers:
- Q: Can The Quilt share the names of the companies who have submitted a letter of intent to bid on this RFP?
A: The Quilt will not release names of companies who have submitted letters of intent to bid on the RFP.
- Q: Will questions and answers related to the content of the RFP be shared with other vendors?
A: Yes, questions and answers will be shared with other vendors. These will be updated on the RFP page of our Quilt website: http://www.thequilt.net/index.php/quilt-news/170-the-quilt-releases-its-2012-openflow-switch-rfp.
- Q: What is the duration of the contract, and options for renewals?
A: Duration of the initial contract will be 12 months with option for renewal by mutual agreement by both parties.
- Q: What is the projected volume of purchases during the length of the contract?
A: The RFP is a purchasing vehicle for those organizations and institutions included on the Authorized Quilt Buyers list included in the RFP. There is no requirement by these institutions to purchase so there is no guarantee of a specific volume of sales based on the contract.
- Q: Can you please provide us with a copy of your Master Service Agreement?
A: A sample copy of the Master Service Agreement can be found here.
- Q: Considering the time frame involved, would The Quilt consider granting a 2 week extension?
A: Yes, a two week extension has been provided for the response due date. Please see updated RFP schedule for new dates.
- Q: Referencing the list of Authorized Quilt Buyers included in the back of the RFP document, please describe how the list is managed. For example, how do institutions get added to the list?
A: There are 29 Quilt members included on the list. Each Quilt member manages the list of institutions that come in under them on the list. When Quilt members wish to add additional institutions, they notify Quilt staff of these changes and then Quilt staff updates the list and distributes and updated list out to authorized vendors. If there is an institution that is not on the list but interested in purchasing, the vendor should contact The Quilt who will who will then contact the Quilt Member to inquire about the institution in question.
- Q: Pertaining to item 3c of the RFP – “Should support OFP_LOCAL rules to allow traffic to be received by the local device” – please provide examples of use cases that are the motivation for support for OFP_LOCAL and the primary protocols that are of interest.
A: This RFP aims to cover a wide range of different deployment scenarios for switch use by campus networks, regional networks and participation in GENI. This RFP is the opportunity to provide potential buyers the ability to look at the different responses to be able to review the switch features to determine whether or not it the switch has a particular functionality. OPF_LOCAL is used to manipulate in-band local OpenFlow controlWe anticipate that there will be switch models that will be a hybrid node on the network for both OpenFlow and non-OpenFlow traffic and then dedicated nodes on the network for just OpenFlow traffic. Additional details will be provided around specific use cases for this question.
- Q: Pertaining to item 3d of the RFP – “Should Support NORMAL action to forward packets” – If hybrid port mode is supported, is NORMAL action still required?
A: There are many good use cases for NORMAL action. In a hybrid port mode, NORMAL action allows you to take traffic that shows up on the OpenFlow port and move that to processing by the non-OpenFlow part of the switch. You have the ability to inject rules to, i.e. block traffic without affecting how the other packets that aren’t being blocked are processed by the switch. NORMAL allows the switch to do OpenFlow processing on only a subset of the traffic. Another use case for NORMAL is for those networks running dual stack IPv4/IPv6 traffic. IPv6 traffic gets routed NORMAL and then OpenFlow picks up the IPv4 traffic.
- Q: What is the mechanism for adding relevant OpenFlow-enabled products that are introduced at a later time to the approved products list of the MSA?
A: Initial terms of the MSA will be 12 months. Within that timeframe, if there are different technologies or new releases that would benefit our Authorized Buyers, these will be added to the MSA through an amendment process. We would expect our authorized vendors to keep The Quilt informed of such releases so we can appropriately time execution of any further amendments.
- Q: Will the contract automatically terminate at the end of 12-months?
A: No. The contract will not automatically terminate at the end of 12-months. There will be information regarding the extension of the contract as well as language that addresses termination of the contract by either party with a certain timeframe for notice.
- Q: Upon award, what is the process to communicate to Authorized Buyers about the providers selected through the RFP process?
A: The Quilt will create a webpage for each individual vendor and their products that will reside on the password protected portion of our website for members. The Quilt would also like to host a vendor webinar and invite in representatives from regionals and the institutions they serve to information participants on OpenFlow and the features of selected vendor switches. In general, The Quilt doesn’t support large scale marketing efforts to members but instead prefers informal, opt-in forums where information is exchanged among members and providers.
- Q: The marketplace is moving quickly in this space, how do we manage pricing refreshes to adjust to the market?
A: We would expect this situation would be handled through an amendment process. The vendor and The Quilt would discuss these marketplace changes during a regularly scheduled call.
- Q: Are any of the products included in an RFP response going to be tested?
A: Testing is one option that can be exercised if during its response review, the RFP review team deems it valuable to conduct a hands-on demonstration.
- Q: When will the results of the RFP be announced to Authorized Quilt Buyers?
A: Once a vendor is notified of selection, the AQBs will also be notified of the results. Will there be a single awardee of the RFP?
A: The RFP was intentionally written to address a broad spectrum of campus and regional network requirements for network switches that are OpenFlow enabled. There is a strong possibility that we will need to incorporate several vendor switches to fulfill all of the requirements.
Preparing and Submitting a Response
- A statement that your company is planning to submit a response to the RFP
- The lead person’s name, title and contact information along with signature
Responses must contain all information that the Responder wishes to be taken into account in evaluating their submission. The information must be responsive to all requested criteria listed in this RFP. The text of the RFP response must be provided electronically in PDF format and delivered electronically (email) to:
Jen Leasure, President
2442 NW Market Street #68
Seattle, Washington 98107
No later than 11:59 PM eastern daylight time on Friday, June 22, 2012. Responses received after that will not be considered.
The Quilt Circle 2012 is Ready!
What I think may be our best edition yet of The Quilt’s annual showcase of the many contributions Quilt members make to research, education and communities across the country is now available - The Quilt Circle 2012
New Quilt Executive Committee Members
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
The Quilt Board of Directors recently completed its annual election for The Quilt Executive Committee. The Quilt is pleased to announce three new members will join the Committee as of 2012 for two-year terms: Don Welch, president and CEO, Merit Network; Veronica Sarjeant, Chief Operating Officer, Florida LambdaRail; and Claude Garelik, System IT Security Officer, South Dakota Board of Regents and Chairman of the Board for Great Plains Network. The nine-member Executive Committee provides ongoing oversight of Quilt affairs as delegated by the full Board.
The Quilt Releases its 2012 Commodity Internet Services RFP
One of the goals of The Quilt is to provide advanced network services at a lower cost. Toward this goal, the coalition of Quilt members and Authorized Quilt Buyers purchase Commodity Internet Services (CIS) through several approved CIS providers who participate in the program.
Quilt Community collectively purchases 220 Gbps of committed commodity bandwidth from Quilt approved providers established from The Quilt's 6th RFP effort in 2010.
The Quilt TelePresence Workshops
Following on to the success of its previous workshops. The Quilt TelePresence Working Group decided to host another workshop in October focusing on trends in the video conferencing for the research and education community. With the new technology and focus on interoperability in the video conference space, the working group found it difficult to narrow the topics for the workshop to fit into a single session. Rather than eliminate key topics, the decision was made to spread the program across two half day sessions instead. Forty six individuals spanning 15 states joined the two interactive sessions with a choice of joining either by video through sites connected through the R&E TelePresence Exchange or by WebEx.
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