SDN Infrastructure
VMWare SDN vs Cisco SDN: Which One Is Better?

VMWare SDN vs Cisco SDN: Which One Is Better?

SDN infrastructure has helped organizations worldwide build better and advanced infrastructures for themselves. It allows them to grow rapidly. Cisco and VMWare have played a pivotal role in creating new and efficient SDN infrastructures. They have helped in evolving SDN technology all over the globe. They have successfully developed more and better opportunities for organizations and companies to mitigate SDN network systems into their ranks. Moreover, Cisco and VMWare are considered at the pinnacle of their respective domains and are for sure giants in SDN infrastructure development. 

Although both the companies operate from different regions and have some similarities, they also possess some key differences. If you are looking for the VMWare SDN vs Cisco, everything is explained in this article. 

A Little Introduction to VMWare

VMWare Inc is an IT-based cloud computing and virtualization company operating its headquarters from California in America. The company, founded in 1998, has become the leading service provider for cloud-based architecture and virtualization techniques. VMWare also operates from several different countries and is rapidly converting itself into a profound force in cloud computing and IT. The company strives to empower itself as the leading company in the region and is headed in the right direction. 

The organization’s determination to excel has led them to a state where they now are generating a revenue of $2.05 billion annually. 

A Little Introduction to Cisco Systems Inc 

Cisco Systems Inc. is one of the prestigious American multinational companies operating its headquarters in San Jose, California. The company has expertise in both hardware and software products. They serve high-end technology telecommunication equipment, too. The company founded in 1984 is now one of the most integral organizations in the management, deployment, and development of network systems. 

Besides, the company’s determinism to be among the top contenders in the global market has helped them elevate their organization to now being a multi-million-dollar company generating a revenue of $224 million annually. 

VMWare SDN vs Cisco SDN

As far as the VMWare SDN vs Cisco SDN is concerned, let’s talk about the highlighted differences:


A good working environment shows the cultural, ethical, and moral core values of a company, and they all together form the basis for an organization’s flourish. 

VMWare is the leading organization in America for cloud-based services and provides services related to virtualization as well. The company is regarded as the leading giant in the local market and generates billions of dollars each year. VMWare is an organization having a mixture of different and vast fraternities consisting of individuals of various backgrounds, making it a rather diverse environment proving diversity and integrity are at their core. The employees are treated well, and a sense of equality and harmony is implemented. Following are the core cultural and professional values practiced at VMWare: 

‘Where there are mentors, not bosses


Cisco Systems Inc. is a multinational global giant with a net worth of $224 million. The company is well-renowned in the worldwide market to be a top-rated organization in the domains of hardware and software-based networking solutions along with high-end telecommunication. Additionally, the company consists of a vast and diverse culture ranging from employees of all nationalities and cultures. 

This promotes and sense of equality and empathy and makes the working environment more decorated and soothing. The cultural practices at Cisco are as follows: 

Software-Defined Networks (SDN) Services:

VMWare has its own unique SDN architecture-based product known as ‘VMWare NSX.’ NSX controls and maintains security, management, and functionality. Moreover, the hypervisor designed by the company itself is a virtual device that integrates a different architecture on the same currently used architecture and integrates the new system’s functionality onto it. The whole process is done through virtualization. Using the hypervisor, the client can control the entire architecture, which is typically SDN-based, creating a completely new infrastructure. Further, this includes L2, L3, and L4 to L7 level network services. 

The goal of NSX is to decouple the network from the underlying hardware and point to completely optimized networking services. The company provides such a system and focuses on the deployment, maintenance, and security of such an architecture. 

Following are some of the SDN services provided by VMWare’s NSX: 

Agility through Automation

This feature brings more efficiency into the system and makes it more agile for working, getting one-click provisioning, and running an L2 to L7 stack in an automated fashion. 

Consistent Multi-Cloud Operations

This allows the clients to manage and run multiple cloud-based applications on the same infrastructure in a smooth, hassle-free environment. It can even access public and private clouds. 

Intrinsic Security

Provides high-end security involving granular protection and segmentation protection into their ranks. Creates policies that can defend against lateral threats. 

Lower CapEx and OpEx

The system used by VMWare is also cost-effective for clients and businesses using their services and saves up to 35%. 

Continuing the hot topic of SDN VMWare vs Cisco, we can say Cisco provides its clients with a rather unique and diverse approach regarding SDN architecture. The company runs its SDN application called Cisco ACI (Application Centric Infrastructure). It helps provide the users with elegant features and is an overall economic approach considering the competition in the market. The product integrates both software and hardware, and the hardware capabilities are based on Cisco’s own Nexus 9000 family. Cisco ACI uses a declarative control system where end-users can specify what they want the result to be. 

The network devices interpret it and do what they want to return that outcome regarding application policy infrastructure. ACI in the data center is a holistic architecture having centralized automation and policy-driven application profiles. ACI fabric uses these factors and regulations. Additionally, Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) delivers software flexibility with the scalability of hardware performance. Below-mentioned is some of the services provided by them, effortlessly: 


Following are the industries that Cisco have worked with: 

  • Retail
  • Oil and Gas
  • Telecommunications
  • Utilities
  • Trasnport
  • Manufacturing
  • Health Care
  • Mining

Following are the industries that VMWare have worked with: 

  • Education
  • Retail
  • Insurance
  • Fintech
  • Transport
  • Telecom


No matter how much we talk about VMWare SDN  vs Cisco, both Cisco and VMWare stand out from the rest in their respective domains. Although both organizations have a similar way of going about their work and produce similar sets of technologies in the domain of SDN, both have different aspects that make them unique and stand out. It is pretty challenging to deduce which one is better as they both strive towards making their clients feel better, secure, endowed, and ensure they reach new heights.

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