Unified Visibility Fabric Architecture

Visibility Fabric

Visibility your way

Visibility Fabric Architecture

  • Overview
  • Architecture
  • Benefits
  • Challenges
  • Resources

An Innovative Approach

Visibility today means insight and control of network traffic from devices and applications, across physical, virtual and SDN environments, as well as private and public clouds. As infrastructure becomes more distributed, traffic volume and speeds increase, and the adoption of emerging technologies continues, the need to converge on a unified monitoring infrastructure that not only simplifies and automates network traffic visibility, but also provides built-in intelligence will drive the ongoing evolution of the Unified Visibility Fabric architecture.

Unified Visibility Fabric™ Architecture

Services Tier
Aggregation, Filtering, Replication, & Intelligent Packet Modification
ultimately delivered across physical, virtual and eventually SDN islands

GigaVUE® Fabric Nodes: High-functioning GigaVUE fabric nodes provide traffic aggregation, filtering, replication, and intelligent packet and flow manipulation optimized for the tools that manage, analyze and secure the network. The fabric nodes are modular and extensible for a range of scale and performance requirements from 1Gb 1RU nodes to 2.4Tb chassis-based solutions. Dynamic changes can be made easily without impacting the production network so IT organizations can be agile and responsive to threats, events or anomalies on the network.

GigaVUE-VM Application: GigaVUE-VM extends visibility within virtual networks and monitors traffic between virtual machines, while intelligently filter specific traffic to physical tools.

GigaVUE-CV Application:Gigamon expects to expand this layer with the GigaVUE-CV application, which is currently a proof of concept. The GigaVUE-CV will extend the reach of the fabric architecture into software-defined data production networks enabling the SDN controller to serve as a fabric node. 

Fabric Intelligence: Flow Mapping® and intelligent packet optimization and normalization using GigaSMART® technology not only enable access to traffic, but can also provide enhanced capabilities to modify packets to hide confidential information, add timing information, and strip out extraneous headers.

Management Tier
Unified End-to-end Provisioning

GigaVUE-FM: GigaVUE-FM (Fabric Manager) will provide centralized management and common policy framweork for the Visibility Fabric architecture. 

Flow Mapping: Patented Flow Mapping technology identifies and directs incoming traffic to single or multiple tools based on user-defined rules implemented from a centralized management console. This enables a more dynamic management of monitored traffic, which eliminates silos of operation—reducing both CAPEX and OPEX. New enhancements to Flow Mapping will help address multi-tenant access and segregation of monitored traffic and policies by providing advanced role-based management and simplified GUI workflows.

Orchestration Tier
Programmability, Automation, and Tool Integration through an Open Framework

The Orchestration Layer will be developed by Gigamon to provide an extensible environment through a set of forthcoming APIs and SDKs to enable third party development of applications.

Application Tier
Dynamic Power to Customize Traffic Selection and Enable Tool Optimization

The Applications Layer will consist of a set of visibility applications to be developed by Gigamon, as well as through independent software vendors, to deliver optimal tool utilization and performance.


The Unified Visibility Fabric™ architecture is an innovative solution that delivers pervasive and dynamic visibility of network traffic across communication networks. A Unified Visibility Fabric architecture can address the monitoring challenges facing today’s IT organizations by helping to:

Extend Visibility: Bridge islands of physical, virtual and eventually SDN worlds with end-to-end visibility for tools across campus, cloud, and service provider

Respond Dynamically: Modify network traffic out-of-band and add tools without impacting the production network. This architecture will provide an open environment through a set of forthcoming APIs and SDKs to be developed by Gigamon to address “just-in-time” responsiveness to real-time events that occur within the network through automation and orchestration

Improve ROI: Control traffic to avoid oversubscription, extend the life of 1Gb tools and ensure that the tools used to manage, analyze and secure the network receive the critical information they require to realize their full potential

Reduce Costs: Centralize tools to reduce CAPEX; simplify management to reduce OPEX with a flexible policy engine that enables parallel monitoring policies to serve multiple departments simultaneously**

Enable Scale: Invest in a solution that can grow to address future needs as your network grows from 1Gb to 10Gb, 40Gb or 100Gb, and evolves from physical to virtual to eventually SDN environments


As the networking landscape changes with emerging technologies like virtualization, cloud computing, mobility and Big Data, organizations are looking to traffic visibility as an essential component in managing, analyzing and securing their networks. However legacy approaches offer limited traffic visibility with limited filtering capabilities; are difficult and costly to scale and manage; and often require change orders or network downtime in order to adapt to the evolving network.

The Enterprise Strategy Group Report highlights a variety of drivers that both identify the shortcomings of current alternatives and substantiate the need for a new approach.

Respondents reported that:

  • 36% Cannot provision mirror/SPAN ports fast enough
  • 38% Have monitoring/security tools that cannot keep up
  • 48% Have tools that need too many connections ports
  • 40% Do not have enough mirror/SPAN ports for their tools