Aviatrix Transit Network in GCP is a powerful use-case for customers looking to design consistent transit architecture in GCP and in other clouds. This is neede to build a unified and consistent network forming the cloud core essentially.
This design also allows business to have full visibility into the traffic beyond what Cloud primitive options can provide.
GCP Transit Network Topology
We will be using a simple hub and spoke transit topology as depicted below. This topology can be extended to hundreds of VPCs and across multiple clouds without any compromises.
Create GCP VPCs Directly from Aviatrix Controller UI
This is very powerful deploy directly from the Aviatrix Controller UI. There is no need to learn different Cloud constructs as Aviatrix can speak all the “Cloud” languages.
Following example shows the output when all necessary VPCs were created to build the transit topology we showcased earlier.
Create GCP Transit Gateway from AVX-Ctrl UI
NOTE: AVX-Ctrl –> Aviatrix Controller
Create GCP Spoke Aviatrix Gateway-1
Create GCP Spoke Aviatrix Gateway-2
Following is the output when AVX-GW is created
GCP Transit (Hub) and Spoke GWs Deployed
At this point you have your HUB and Spoke GW deployed
Attach GCP Hub to Spoke-VPC1 and VPC2
AVX-Ctrl creates the IPSec Tunnels / Firewall rules etc. to attach Spoke-VPC to Transit-VPC as shown below
Aviatrix Encrypted Peering Section
Encrypted Peering section will also show the following outcome
Add custom SSH keys to user accounts for yourself, your project member, or organization members. Alternatively, Compute Engine can automatically generate these keys for you when you connect to instances.
In the previous blog post, we performed the initial OCI on-boarding and Transit VPC setup. Here we will build Multi-Cloud transit network connecting OCI and GCP together. The GCP multi-cloud transit network is already built using the Aviatrix Controller. This is the common cloud architecture that Aviatrix provide across all major Clouds such as AWS, Azure, GCP and OCI. This common cloud architecture provide consistent operational tools and visibility into different Cloud Networks.
Business Requirement to Consume Services from GCP and OCI
A customer has already deployed production workload in GCP to utilize GCP’s ML/AI/Analytics services. A new business requirement emerged to consume database service offered in Oracle (OCI) Cloud.
From the network architecture point of view, this business requirement can easily be fulfilled by building an Aviatrix based transit architecture in OCI; the same transit network architecture that was built in GCP. Eventually these two Cloud architectures will be connected together using Aviatrix encrypted peering.
Aviatrix Transit Gateway in OCI Transit VCN
As first step, we logged into the controller and launched the workflow to deploy the Aviatrix Transit VCN Gateway (OCI calls VPC as VCN: Virtual Cloud Network). The VCNs were build in the previous blog.
Notice the ease of deploying it in the region of your choice with the instance size that your business require. Also notice that Public Subnet was automatically created by Aviatrix and one does not need to worry about creating it from scratch.
Once you hit create button, the Aviatrix Controller will communicate with the OCI and will deploy the Aviatrix Gateway. Following output shows the process of creating this transit gateway.
Aviatrix Controller Deploying Transit Gateway in OCI
[21:42:57] Starting to create OCI GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn.
[21:42:58] Connected to Oracle OCI.
[21:42:58] Deploying virtual machine…
[21:44:32] Deploy virtual machine done.
[21:44:32] Configure virtual machine.
[21:44:33] License check is complete.
[21:44:33] Added GW info to Database.
[21:44:35] OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn AVX SQS Queue created.
[21:44:35] Create message queue done.
[21:44:35] Initializing GW…..
[21:45:06] Copy configuration to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy new software to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy /etc/cloudx/cloudx_code_file.json.enc to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy /etc/cloudx/cloudx_code_key_file.txt to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy scripts to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy sdk to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Copy libraries to GW OCI-Transit-GW-Ashburn done.
[21:45:06] Installing software ….
[21:45:06] Issuing certificates….
[21:45:06] Issue certificates done
[21:45:15] GW software started.
[21:45:29] Software Installation done.
You can now login to OCI console and notice the Aviatrix Transit GW instance deployed in the Finance Compartment or Department.
Following output shows the instance detail and other information directly gathered from the OCI console.
Instance Information Availability Domain: RGRl:US-ASHBURN-AD-2 Image: Published Image: aviatrix_gateway_0415_1017_20190820 Fault Domain: FAULT-DOMAIN-2 OCID: …dsmska ShowCopy Region: iad Launched: Thu, 17 Oct 2019 04:43:00 UTC Shape: VM.Standard2.2 Compartment: shahzadali (root)/Finance-Compartment Virtual Cloud Network: OCI-Transit-VCN-Ashburn Launch Mode: NATIVE Maintenance Reboot: – Primary VNIC Information Private IP Address: 10.111.0.2 Internal FQDN: av-gw-oci-transit-gw-ashburn…ShowCopy Public IP Address: 22.214.171.124 Subnet: OCI-Transit-VCN-Ashburn-public-subnet Network Security Groups: aviatrix-security-group This instance’s traffic is controlled by its firewall rules in addition to the associated Subnet’s security lists and the VNIC’s network security groups. Launch Options NIC Attachment Type: VFIO Firmware: UEFI_64 Remote Data Volume: PARAVIRTUALIZED Boot Volume Type: PARAVIRTUALIZED
Important point we would like to highlight that in order to get all that information, one does not really need to login to OCI console. All this information is also available from the Aviatrix Controller UI itself. This is great operational benefit because now operators don’t need to worry about learning different clouds and their constructs.
Aviatrix Spoke VCN Deployment in OCI
At this point the OCI Transit GW is deployed. The next step is to create an OCI VCN and then deploy Spoke GW inside the Spoke-VCN.
Once again Aviatrix Controller is used to deploy these constructs. Following screen shot shows the VCN (shown as VPC) creation in the region of your choice with the CIDR that you planned for this VCN.
Aviatrix Spoke Gateway Deployment in OCI
After the Spoke-VCN was created, simplified controller UI is used to deploy the Aviatrix Spoke GW as shown in the screen shot below.
Following output from Aviatrix Controller shows the process of deploying the Aviatrix Spoke GW inside the Spoke-VCN
[21:58:12] Starting to create OCI GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn. [21:58:12] Connected to Oracle OCI. [21:58:12] Deploying virtual machine… [21:59:46] Deploy virtual machine done. [21:59:46] Configure virtual machine. [21:59:47] License check is complete. [21:59:47] Added GW info to Database. [21:59:49] OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn AVX SQS Queue created. [21:59:49] Create message queue done. [21:59:49] Initializing GW….. [22:00:20] Copy configuration to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy new software to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy /etc/cloudx/cloudx_code_file.json.enc to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy /etc/cloudx/cloudx_code_key_file.txt to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy scripts to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy sdk to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Copy libraries to GW OCI-Spoke-GW1-Ashburn done. [22:00:20] Installing software …. [22:00:21] Issuing certificates…. [22:00:21] Issue certificates done [22:00:28] GW software started. [22:00:42] Software Installation done.
Enable Aviatrix ActiveMesh For Aviatrix OCI Transit and Spoke Gateways
It is best practice to enable Aviatrix ActiveMesh on the Transit and Spoke Gateway. ActiveMesh greatly enhances the availability and performance of the Network inside the Cloud.
Go to Gateway section in the Aviatrix Controller (AVX-CTRL) to enable it.
AVX-CTRL –> Gateway –> Enable ActiveMesh Mode Info
Attach AVX-Spoke GW to AVX-Transit GW
At this point the Aviatrix Transit and Spoke GWs are deployed in this respective VCNs. Here we will attach the Spoke GW to Transit GW. This step will build an encrypted tunnel between these two gateway. It is extremly simple and one click operations without operators worrying about knowing the source/dest IP, IPSec protocols or IKE details. All of this is automatically done by the Aviatrix Controller with just a single click.
OCI Transit VCN and Transit GW Routing Tables
One of the great advantages of using Aviatrix is that one does not need to login to OCI, AWS or GCP Cloud Consoles to gather this information. The Aviatrix Controller will also provide the relevant information that greatly improves the day2 operations.
Following screen shots show the routing tables from VCNs and inside the Aviatrix Transit and Spoke Gateways.
OCI Spoke VCN and Spoke GW Routing Tables
Here we can see the routing table details from the Spoke VCN and Spoke GW point of view.
At this point the OCI setup is complete. In the next step we will peer OCI and GCP transit networks to establish connectivity between multiple clouds.
Transit Peering Between OCI and GCP Transit Gateways
Aviatrix provides a common cloud architecture and operaions cabalities that allows operators and architects to build multi-cloud archtecture without worrrying about the underlying constructs.
In order to achieve the initial business objective, now we will peer OCI and GCO together. This will allow applications in either side of the cloud to have true multi-cloud connectivity.
Login to Aviatrix controller and under “Transit Peering” select the Transit Gateways in both Clouds respectively and then connect.
Following output shows that both Clouds are connected in true multi-cloud fashion within a minute.
Multi-Cloud Connectivty Testing
We have deployed following topology for the multi-cloud connectivity. We will perform a ping test from source Test-VM in GCP towards Test-VM in OCI behind Spoke-VCN-GW
gcp-vm – 10.76.1.2
oci-vm – 10.112.128.2
Aviatrix allows a common network topology across multiple clouds. This makes the enterprise network and security deployments seamless. There are no surprises and IT admins/operators does not need to know the underlying artifacts of various clouds.
Aviatrix controller makes it extremely simple to on-board Oracle OCI. Take a look at the screen shots here and follow along.
The Aviatrix Controller is multi cloud, multi subscription, multi account and multi region capable appliance/VM/instance. Launching the Controller in any public cloud will also enable you to deploy and manage networking and security in any other public cloud.
In our setup, Aviatrix Controller is already deployed and running in AWS. Bill for using Aviatrix services will still be billed to AWS billing account. One has to pay for the utilization of OCI resources in the OCI billing system.
After step#2, you are presented with the following screen.
OCI Account , Tenancy and Compartment Details
The purpose of on-boarding is to help you setup an account on the Aviatrix Controller (AVX-CTRL) that corresponds to an OCI account with compartment policies, so that the Aviatrix Controller can launch Aviatrix GWs using OCI APIs. For on-boarding the OCI account in the AVX-CTRL, we need following four pieces of information from OCI console.
API Private Key File
User OCID information is collected from Identity section.
Tenancy OCID information is collected by navigating in the OCI Console’s Administration section (OCI Console –> Administration –>Tenancy Details)
Compartment or department OCID can be gathered by navigating in the Identity section of OCI console ( OCI Console –> Identity –>Compartments)
Generate Public and Private Keys
The commands here are valid for Mac and Linux OS. For Windows, you need to install “Git bash for Windows”
At this point OCI is on-boarded. Notice that beside OCI, we have AWS, Azure and GCP on-boarded under the same controller as well.
Create Transit VPC
To make sure the connectivity is established between Aviatrix Controller and OCI, we will create a OCI Transit VCN (VCN is equivalent to VPC in AWS) directly from Aviatrix Controller UI. This Transit VCN will also be used in the subsequent testing.
Following screen shot taken from OCI console shows that VCN was successfully created from Aviatrix Controller.
Also notice that beside creating the simple VCN, Aviatrix Controller also creates following
Public and Private subnets inside the VCN
These subnets are created and managed for private and public routing tables
Private and Public Routing tables
Following screen shot shows the routing tables created by Aviatrix Controller.
This initial configuration shows the OCI account on-boarding and deployment of one Transit VPC with associated subnets and route table. The AVX-CTRL makes it easy and seamless to deploy multi-clouds with the same look and feel and without worrying about underneath constructs.
Aviatrix solution can take care of networking, security and network segmentation for workloads deployed in public clouds by deploying transit networking solution using Aviatrix transit and spoke gateways. It is a standard and stamp-out (copy/paste and repeat) design that is applicable to any public cloud (e.g AWS, GCP, Azure and OCI).
There are situation when there is a need to connect to 3rd party devices or services to exchange routes or to provide additional connectivity. These services and devices could be in the Public Cloud or On-Premise. In those situation the Aviatrix transit can also connect to those devices and services in secure and encrypted fashion (e.g using L3 IPSec).
Following topology demonstrate a scenario where a business is using Cisco CSR (could be any service or instance from any vendor that supports IPSec) in the Cloud to terminate LISP. By virtue of using LISP, the business is forced into a sub-optimal design where an additional hop is necessary.
For this setup we are assuming that you have already deployed Cisco CSR from AWS marketplace
Created Transit VPC and Spoke VPC directly from Aviatrix Controller UI (no need to login to AWS console)
Deployed AVX Transit GW and AVX Spoke GW in their respective VPCs using the Aviatrix Controller UI
Follow the Aviatrix Transit Networking workflow to connect to external 3rd party device (e.g Cisco CSR)
For external connectivity eBGP is the preferred option and this is what we are using here
If you want to connect via static route to external device, it is also possible but then you have to enable “ActiveMesh” on Aviatrix Transit and Spoke Gateways first
Attached Spoke-VPC to Transit-VPC
Build the IPSec Tunnel From Aviatrix Transit Gateway to Cisco CSR
Configure Aviatrix Controller as shown below
Notice we are using the default IPSec Algorithms. My recommendation is to start with the default and change after if needed
After you have done the setup as above, you will notice an entry in the Site2Cloud (S2C) section of AVX-Controller automatically (The screenshot shows tunnel UP which is not correct. The tunnel will be in the down state at this time)
Click on the Name above and download the IPSec config.
Aviatrix Site2Cloud configuration.
This connection has a single IPsec tunnel between customer gateway and Aviatrix gateway in the cloud.
1: Internet Key Exchange Configuration
Configure the IKE SA as follows
Version : 1
Authentication Method : Pre-Shared Key
Pre-Shared Key : Aviatrix1!
Encryption Algorithm : AES-256-CBC
Authentication Algorithm : SHA-1
Lifetime : 28800 seconds
Phase 1 Negotiation Mode : main
Perfect Forward Secrecy : Diffie-Hellman Group 2
DPD threshold : 10 seconds
DPD retry interval : 3 seconds
DPD retry count : 3
2: IPSec Configuration
Configure the IPSec SA as follows:
Protocol : esp
Authentication Algorithm : hmac-sha1
Encryption Algorithm : AES-256-CBC
Authentication Algorithm : HMAC-SHA-1
Lifetime : 28800 seconds
Mode : tunnel
Perfect Forward Secrecy : Diffie-Hellman Group 2
IPSec ESP (Encapsulating Security Payload) inserts additional
headers to transmit packets. These headers require additional space, which reduces the amount of space available to transmit application data.To limit the impact of this behavior, we recommend the following configuration on your Customer Gateway:
TCP MSS Adjustment : 1387 bytes
Clear Don't Fragment Bit : enabled
Fragmentation : Before encryption
3: Tunnel Interface Configuration
Your Customer Gateway must be configured with a tunnel interface that is associated with the IPSec tunnel. Traffic that should go through the tunnel should be specified by following your gateway's configuration guide, using the information below.
Gateway IP addresses:
Customer Gateway : 126.96.36.199
Aviatrix Gateway Public IP : 188.8.131.52
Aviatrix Gateway Private IP : 10.60.0.92
Customer Network(s) : N/A for transit network
Cloud Networks(s) : N/A for transit network
Tunnel Inside IP addresses:
Customer Gateway : 169.254.48.97/30
Aviatrix Gateway : 169.254.48.98/30
Configure your tunnel to fragment at the optimal size:
Tunnel interface MTU : 1436 bytes
4. Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) Configuration:
The Border Gateway Protocol (BGPv4) is used to exchange routes from the VPC to on-prem network. Each BGP router has an Autonomous System Number (ASN).
BGP Mode : true
Customer Gateway ASN : 65002
Aviatrix Gateway ASN : 65003
Configure BGP to receive routes from on-prem network. Aviatrix Transit gateway will announce prefixes to your on-prem gateway based upon the spokes you have attached. For vendor specific instructions, please go to the following URL:
Cisco CSR Configuration
This is how the above template translates into a Cisco CSR Config.
Current configuration : 7936 bytes
! Last configuration change at 16:30:21 UTC Fri Oct 4 2019 by ec2-user
service timestamps debug datetime msec
service timestamps log datetime msec
platform qfp utilization monitor load 80
no platform punt-keepalive disable-kernel-core
platform console virtual
vrf definition GS
logging persistent size 1000000 filesize 8192 immediate
no aaa new-model
login on-success log
multilink bundle-name authenticated
license udi pid CSR1000V sn 91V3AHTVAJ1
diagnostic bootup level minimal
memory free low-watermark processor 72406
spanning-tree extend system-id
username ec2-user privilege 15
crypto keyring mykey
! local-address is the private IP address of this CSR
pre-shared-key address 184.108.40.206 key Aviatrix1!
! 220.127.116.11 is the public IP address of Avaitrix
crypto isakmp policy 10
encryption aes 256
crypto isakmp keepalive 10 3 periodic
crypto isakmp profile myprofile
match identity address 18.104.22.168 255.255.255.255
crypto ipsec transform-set myset esp-aes 256 esp-sha-hmac
crypto ipsec df-bit clear
crypto ipsec profile ipsec_profile
set security-association lifetime seconds 28800
set transform-set myset
set pfs group2
ip address 10.61.0.1 255.255.255.0
ip address 169.254.48.97 255.255.255.252
ip tcp adjust-mss 1387
tunnel source 10.60.0.89
tunnel mode ipsec ipv4
tunnel destination 22.214.171.124
tunnel protection ipsec profile ipsec_profile
vrf forwarding GS
ip address 192.168.35.101 255.255.255.0
ip nat inside
no mop enabled
no mop sysid
ip address dhcp
ip nat outside
no mop enabled
no mop sysid
router bgp 65002
network 10.61.0.0 mask 255.255.255.0
neighbor 169.254.48.98 remote-as 65003
neighbor 169.254.48.98 timers 10 30 30
neighbor 169.254.48.98 activate
neighbor 169.254.48.98 send-community extended
ip forward-protocol nd
ip tcp mss 1387
ip tcp window-size 8192
ip http server
ip http authentication local
ip http secure-server
ip nat inside source list GS_NAT_ACL interface GigabitEthernet1 vrf GS overload
ip route vrf GS 0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 GigabitEthernet1 10.60.0.81 global
ip ssh rsa keypair-name ssh-key
ip ssh version 2
ip ssh pubkey-chain
key-hash ssh-rsa BF29B2896E9286C9B44DD472EF3397DA ec2-user
ip scp server enable
ip access-list standard GS_NAT_ACL
10 permit 192.168.35.0 0.0.0.255
20 permit 10.61.0.0 0.0.0.255
line con 0
line vty 0 4
transport input ssh
line vty 5 20
transport input ssh
app-hosting appid guestshell
app-vnic gateway1 virtualportgroup 0 guest-interface 0
guest-ipaddress 192.168.35.102 netmask 255.255.255.0
app-default-gateway 192.168.35.101 guest-interface 0
BGP Working Config. with address-family ipv4
The configuration above uses the vpn4 as address family. You can also make it work with ipv4 address family
Aviatrix Transit Gateway workflow allows direct connectivity from Transit Gateway to 3rd party devices. The standard IPSec protocols allows Aviatrix Transit Gateway to connect to any devices supporting IPSec. These devices could be in the same Public Cloud, a different Public Cloud or to the On-Prem devices.
The workflow based implementation allows ease of use and reduces time to market.
Provide certificate based SSL VPN user authentication
Support multi factor authentication (MFA) methods such as Google, DUO, Okta, SAML and LDAP
You should also be able to combine various authentication and authorization components to add extra level of security for the interaction. For instance the solution first authenticate from a corporate LDAP entity and then consult with DUO for MFA
Authenticate a VPN user directly from the VPN client to any IDP via SAML protocol. The SAML protocol and a client with SAML support must be the key requirement
The solution must provide a Profile Based Access Control so that beyond the authentication and autharization that was discussed above, one should also control the access right at the IP Address, CIDR or Subnet level (aka Profile Based Network Segmentation)
The Aviatrix solution has all the above mentioned design ingredients. On top of that it has features such as Geo-Location based connectivity to the closest VPN GW (or Concentrator) with support for both TCP and UDP based load-balancing
Look at this Clara customer case-study (Clara is part of SoFI now) for reference
Direct Connect Gateway is getting popularity. With large networks and deployment across regions, it is evident that customers are picking Direct Connect Gateway to provide high-availability across regions. One should remember that even with the Direct Connect GW in picture, data path still goes through the physical connection. It means that for regions that are far apart, one might notice some latency/delays.
Managing and automating Direct Connect (DX) Gateway could be challenging. Aviatrix is the platform that can orchestrate a DX Gateway that is serving as a bridge between two Transit Gateways across regions provided there is no VGW in the datapath and the DX Gateway is attached to the TGWs via the default security domain (Security Domain is Aviatrix construct to provide network segmentation between VPCs/vNETs)
Aviatrix will orchestrating the Multi-Region architecture with DX Gateway and will handle all the route propagation. In addition, it will deliver the following additional capabilities to the network:
Full HA Capabilities with no single point of failure in the network with High Performance Encryption between Regions @ 5Gbps
IPSec VPN could also be used as a Backup to the DX Gateway
Networking and Networks have transformed over period of time. Enterprises have realized that public cloud is the strategic direction for their IT infrastructure and applications. The service providers like Amazon, Google and Microsoft are extremely efficient at providing networking, security, compute and storage capabilities in their respective public cloud such as AWS, GCP and Azure.
“All Clouds are not created equally”. In order to get the best of each and every cloud, there is a need to create seamless joints between those clouds which should, like human body joints, work in conjunction with each others. They should work in harmony, in an orchestrated fashion. This joining and marriage has given birth to a new Networking Architecture, what we call “Multi-Cloud” today.