Meet Equinix: Andre Stubberfield, Senior Global Solutions Architect, Proving the Impossible

Ryan Mallory

andreThe Equinix family is made up of employees who bring a rich and diverse set of skills to help our customers solve business and technology problems with innovative solutions. This month, we turn our “Meet Equinix” spotlight on Senior Global Solutions Architect Andre Stubberfield, who is the master architect responsible for network device configuration for Equinix Solution Validation Centers (SVCs).

Working out of his hometown of Chicago, Andre began developing his networking expertise at Digital Equipment Corporation, where he won an award for designing one of the first networks where multiple devices were communicating with each other. Prior to coming to Equinix, he held various positions as a sales engineer, data center architect and network consultant for government agencies, financial markets and enterprises. When Andre is not helping enterprises and technology partners test their applications and products in Equinix SVCs, he is flying remote control helicopters with his son or traveling with his family.

What services do Equinix’s global SVCs provide?

We help both our enterprise prospects and technology partners test the performance and compatibility of their applications and products. Also, we act as independent advisors, where we openly discuss any risks, such as security and or hidden costs, all at no charge. These things distinguish us in the marketplace.

Describe the testing that enterprises and technology partners are doing in the SVCs.

Prospective customers typically have something they want to prove – for example, application performance in the cloud.

Technology partners are typically trying to test a technology or product that they want to bring to market.

For both of these scenarios, we map out a test plan and criteria for how these proof-of-concepts will be judged successful.

What type of applications are enterprises testing?

It varies by customer, but we primarily see apps that are traditionally housed on-premises that are being considered for the cloud. They also test homegrown applications ̶ not written with cloud in mind – to see how well they perform in the cloud. They also compare Equinix data center direct interconnection performance to the cloud versus going over the public Internet from their own location. And, they test hybrid cloud models, where they set performance thresholds based on workload usage running on local equipment in the Equinix data center and either add or take away compute power from the cloud.

Enterprises will also measure application performance in one Equinix data center versus another. The main idea is to test the performance of applications as they place them closer to their users – for example, comparing the West and East Coasts.

Can you give us an example from a real-life enterprise customer?

Yes, we worked with Pure Storage to test the performance and compatibility of its storage products in a hybrid cloud. The resulting tests successfully demonstrated the performance, data reduction and reliability of the Pure Storage FlashArray; the private, low-latency connectivity between Pure Storage and Microsoft Azure that uses Azure ExpressRoute and the Equinix Cloud Exchange, and the high-availability of Microsoft Azure virtual machine services.

What are technology partners testing in the SVCs?

Given that we can connect to a large number of clouds and networks, technology partners test their products for cloud performance and compatibility, such as cloud storage solutions. We also help a number of cloud providers test their services with their customers. For example, Microsoft demonstrates to its customers how it connects to Azure via ExpressRoute.

Tell us about the recent SVC automation project.

Working in collaboration with one of our network partners, we’ve created automated network device configuration scripts to perform more proof-of-concepts faster. The project is complete and is currently being rolled out on a global basis. We were able reduce our proof-of-concept turnaround time by 3x.

Meet more of our GSAs and learn about the work they are doing with our global customers:

Rodney Elder – Making Open Interconnection Solutions Possible

Bryson Hopkins – Interconnecting Clouds and Networks

Daniel Ong – Trending from APAC: Cloud Migration