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Netronome Delivers 20x OVS Performance with Next-Gen Intelligent Server Adapter

By Michael Guta June 19, 2015

The network dynamics in today’s digital environment requires solutions that can deal with the high rates of change that take place day in and day out. The integration of mobile and cloud-based service have introduced complexities that warrant flexible, scalable and secure delivery systems capable of handling an evolving infrastructure. In order to address these challenges Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networking (SDN) have been deployed by network operators to effectively manage their traffic. Netronome, developer of high-performance networking solutions for cloud, data center, service provider and enterprise communications products, looks to improve the performance of SDN and NFV architectures with a next-generation intelligent server adapter.

The company demonstrated a thoroughly improved server performance and utilization with hardened application level security at the Open Networking Summit 2015 held this week. The intelligent server adapter addresses fundamental performance, efficiency and security challenges facing SDN and NFV architectures.

The new platform has been designed with standards-based open networking software supporting Open vSwitch (OVS), OpenStack and Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK). These adapters have been designed to be easily integrated with standard servers and semi-custom appliances so they can be deployed across a wide range of markets. The company has stated the adapters can handle cloud scale and next-generation datacenters with advanced scalability and security protocols, while delivering best in class price/performance ratio.

Currently the market has three popular switches composed of VMware virtual switch, Cisco Nexus 1000V, and Open vSwitch (OVS). Open vSwitch was created to address the open source community for Linux-based hypervisors, such as KVM and XEN, but it has since grown to include OpenStack. It can enable large scale network automation through programmatic extension, while still supporting standard management interfaces and protocols such as NetFlow, sFlow, IPFIX, RSPAN, CLI, LACP, and 802.1ag.

Image via Shutterstock

“Data center architects are actively seeking ways to reclaim their server cores in order to optimize performance for the applications and services that generate revenue,” said Sujal Das, Senior Vice President of Strategy and General Manager of Data Center Business Unit. “At the same time, they want to deliver optimal networking and security processing tasks without compromising performance. Our intelligent adapters strike a perfect balance by supporting both of these needs.”

The demonstration focused on policy-based forwarding using the OVS datapath running in the Netronome intelligent server adapter, which resulted in a 20x performance increase and a return of an entire CPU socket (or four CPU cores) dedicated to server applications and services.

The Open Networking Summit was created by the founders of software defined networking to encourage innovation and address challenges in the OpenFlow, SDN and network functions virtualization arena. End users, engineers, business leaders and researchers have been coming to the summit for the past four years with the sole purpose of meeting these challenges and shaping the future of networking. 

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

Contributing Writer

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