Enterprise Cloud Networking Principles

Luc Van SteenCity Cloud, Cloud, Cloud ComputingLeave a Comment

Luc Van SteenDeploying a server in the cloud is easy. The tools, like the City Network Control Panel, makes it a ‘click-based’ installation.  But when moving or migrating a whole IT infrastructure ecosystem to the cloud, more designing and planning is required.

You need to have a clear view on how you will implement your servers. As servers are not stand-alone but working together to provide a service, a good network design becomes extremely important.

In this post I will be discussing two basic network designs that can be use in enterprise cloud computing.


My project approach is ‘keep it simple’.  Avoid complexity in everything you do.  You will gain on flexibility, managebility and sustainability.
Towards networking this translates to ‘keep it as flat as possible’ without compromising basic security principles.

I also try to reuse proven designs to gain on time, making a project more profitable.  Let me share two basic network design I tend to reuse(*) when deploying a cloud-based enterprise infrastructure, a single vlan concept and an extended vlan concept.

1. Single vlan concept

This is the most basic form of a network design.  For smaller deployments, this concept is often enough and can be managed by local IT staff or the infrastructure partner.

Single VLAN Concept

Mostly used for external access only.  Management via a seperate management vlan (mgmt) , external access through vlan 1 and cross server communication via vlan 2.

2. Extended vlan concept

In an extended vlan concept, I also start from a single vlan concept but splitting up the external servers and internal servers in different networks and implement DTAP (Development, Test, Acceptance and Production) layers.
This is mostly use by larger companies who are moving their complete infrastrucutr to the cloud and have to comply with strict Service Level Objectives or Service Level Agreements.

Extended VLAN Concept

Of course there are other network concepts possible. Which concept fits your needs best?  That is a question you should answer.  My advise is to start small and let it grow, and don’t forget to keep it simple!

(*) Credits for these designs go to the one who originally drew these designs (name unknown).