Monday, February 29, 2016

Pica8 Cranks Up OpenFlow Switching by 1000x

Pica8 is introducing a Table Type Patterns (TTP) functionality in its PicOS network operating system that overcomes limitations in OpenFlow scaling for very large data centers.

The company said TTP enables its PicOS to scale to 2 million flows with Cavium’s XPliant switch ASIC, and to 256,000 flows with Broadcom’s StrataXGS Tomahawk switch ASIC. Typical TCAM flow capacity in the top-of-rack installed base today is between 1,000 and 2,000 flows, and with Pica8’s TTP implementation, production networks can scale 1,000 times more.

TTP defines how tables are set up in a switch, which an SDN controller can program via the OpenFlow switch protocol. The development of a TTP-based approach has been motivated by several factors, including: to maximize the available capacity, to better accommodate heterogeneity of existing hardware switches, to enable future innovation in hardware switches through more seamless SDN application development, and to enable granular and automated communication between application / controller developers and switch vendors.

“TTP and our own abstraction technology – vASIC -- unlock custom ASICs to bring choice, programmability and scale to application developers,” said Dan Tuchler, vice president of product management at Pica8. “Application developers no longer have to worry about the limitations or differences between ASICs when delivering their solutions to the market.”

TTP is in early release and will be generally available with PicOS in March.


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