Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Broadcom Unveils its ARMv8-A Multi-Core Processor Architecture for NFV

Broadcom unveiled its ARMv8-A architecture for a new generation of multicore processors designed to deliver server-class performance for network functions virtualisation (NFV).

The new design is built around a 64-bit ARM core with virtualized accelerators for networking, communications, big data, storage and security applications. The design also features a quad-issue, quad-threaded 64-bit ARMv8-A core with superscalar out-of-order execution. The core enables 3-GHz performance in the advanced 16-nm FINFET process node.

“By offering the industry’s highest performance ARM-based multi-core processor architecture, Broadcom is expanding its technical leadership in multiple generations of multi-core processing,” said Ron Jankov, Broadcom Senior Vice President and General Manager, Processor and Wireless Infrastructure. “Our innovations in the CPU core and comprehensive virtualization, along with our adoption of 16-nm FINFET technology, will further separate us from our competitors.”

Broadcom and ARM announced a partnership to define and develop an open, standards-based NFV software environment for the ARM ecosystem. The companies said they will work with members of the Linaro Networking Group and European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) to standardize the environment’s programming model, tool chains, application programming model, tool chains, application programming interfaces and networking-specific libraries across the industry.

“ARM and Broadcom have enjoyed a close and long-standing partnership. We are now pleased to see Broadcom leverage the ARMv8-A architecture and push the envelope with a very high-performance processing solution for the communications market,” said Tom Cronk, executive vice president and general manager, Processor Division, ARM. “Broadcom is taking a leadership role in helping us to drive an open, standards-based NFV software environment. This environment will enable the efficient and intelligent technology needed by businesses and consumers in our increasingly connected and data-hungry world.”

Broadcom said its goal is to enable an open, portable software environment that enables developers to seamlessly migrate designs based on Broadcom’s XLP II family of multi-core processors to the new ARMv8-A processor architecture, while preserving software investment.

http://www.broadcom.com

In October 2012, Broadcom began sampling its 28nm XLP 200-Series network processor for enterprise, service provider 4G/LTE, data center, cloud computing and software defined networking (SDN) equipment.  The processor family, which is the world's first 28nm multicore communications processor family, promises up to 400 percent faster performance than competing solutions while lowering power consumption by up to 60 percent. 

Broadcom said the product launch demonstrates its successful integration of NetLogic Microsystems, which developed the XLP processors.

The new processors combine quad issue, quad threading and 2 GHz out-of-order execution capabilities with integrated networking and security acceleration.  The XLP 200-Series is the first to integrate a grammar processing engine, a fourth generation regular expression (RegEx) engine, and a broad range of autonomous encryption and authentication processing engines to deliver comprehensive Layer 7 deep-packet inspection (DPI) capabilities and complete offload of the compute-intensive security functions from the CPU cores. 

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