Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Cisco presents Silicon One engine of "Internet for the Future"

by James E. Carroll

Cisco unveiled its next generation architecture - its foundation for building a new Internet, by combining silicon, optics, and software. At its "Internet for the Future" event in San Francisco, the company also unveiled new carrier-class routers and discussed an expanded sales strategy that will allow hyperscale web companies and other customers to purchase silicon and optical components directly.

Cisco Silicon One is the new unified, programmable silicon architecture that will be the foundation of Cisco’s routing portfolio going forward, including fixed and modular platforms.  It offers programmability, buffering, power efficiency, scale, and feature flexibility.


The first Cisco Silicon One device - dubbed Q100 - surpasses the 10 Tbps routing performance, although in the near term the company expects to deliver up to 25 Tbps. Q100 actually began sampling 2 years ago and is now shipping. It offers global route scale, deep buffering, and P4 programmability with switching efficiency. It delivers 2x bandwidth and 3x packets-per-second over current routing silicon.

The new Cisco 8000 series carrier-class router is the first platform built with Cisco Silicon One, specifically the Q100. Key features include:
  • Optimized for 400 Gbps and beyond, starting at 10.8 Tbps in just a single rack unit
  • Powered by the new, cloud-enhanced Cisco IOS XR7 networking operating system software,
  • designed to simplify operations and lower operational costs
  • Offers enhanced cybersecurity with integrated trust technology for real-time insights into the trustworthiness of critical infrastructure
  • Service providers gain more bandwidth scale and programmability to deliver Tbps capacity
Saudi Arabia's STC will be the first carrier to deploy the Cisco 8000 series. Comcast and NTT Communications are also testing the platform.

The new Cisco IOS XRT promises:
  • 50% less memory footprint
  • 50% faster boot time
  • 40% smaller image sizes
  • 40% faster download
  • Root-of-trust in the hardware and a cloud-based method for verifying trust in the NOS
Silicon + Optics

Over the past few years, Cisco has been investing in silicon photonics, including its acquisitions of CoreOptics, LightWire and Luxtera.  Its acquisition of Acacia is pending -- all of which reflect the company's desire to improve the availability, capacity, density and power-efficiency, especially at 400G and above.  The strategy has 3 major themes:

  • Optical  innovations will drive architectural transitions, including coherent pluggables and co-packaging.
  • Different optical consumption model, including fully integrated systems, pluggables, and components
  • Cisco Optics on non-Cisco hosts.

In terms of the new sales model, Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins said the key idea is to provide greater flexibility in how customers consume the technology. Cisco cited Google and Facebook as partners who are interested in disaggregated solutions.

Microsoft is testing the use of its SoNIC technology in conjunction with the Cisco 8000 platform.

“Innovation requires focused investment, the right team and a culture that values imagination," said Chuck Robbins, chairman and CEO of Cisco. "We are dedicated to transforming the industry to build a new internet for the 5G era. Our latest solutions in silicon, optics and software represent the continued innovation we're driving that helps our customers stay ahead of the curve and create new, groundbreaking experiences for their customers and end users for decades to come.”



About 5 years ago, Cisco set out to design a new silicon architecture, one which could serve multiple markets and scale over time.

Eyal Dagan, SVP Silicon, Cisco, shares his views on the design philosophy of Cisco Silicon One. It was a clean sheet approach. A key question -- is it possible to create a routing chip with the efficiency of switching silicon?

https://youtu.be/P5QwOKaxRtI



Unpacking Cisco's Internet for the Future



Jonathan Davidson gives his take on Cisco's Internet for the Future event. Headlining the announcements is a Cisco Silicon One, its foundation for a new portfolio of carrier-class routers as well as future products.


https://youtu.be/FTF8RjvUTL0


Hyperscalers and Service Providers on Cisco's Future of the Internet



Cisco's Future of the Internet event in San Francisco featured a panel discussion with Comcast's Noam Raffaeli, AT&T's Chris Rice, Facebook's Dan Raniovitsj, and Microsoft's Yousef Kalidi.

Jonathan Davidson, SVP and General Manager of Cisco's Service Provider group, provides some key takeaways.

https://youtu.be/trYofSMFPaY

The design philosophy of Cisco Silicon One



About 5 years ago, Cisco set out to design a new silicon architecture, one which could serve multiple markets and scale over time.

Eyal Dagan, SVP Silicon, Cisco, shares his views on the design philosophy of Cisco Silicon One. It was a clean sheet approach. A key question -- is it possible to create a routing chip with the efficiency of switching silicon?

https://youtu.be/P5QwOKaxRtI



The 400G-ZR Transition



400G-ZR is going to shift network architectures, says Bill Gartner, SVP/GM of Cisco's Optical Systems and Optics Group. Many customers will continue to deploy chassis solutions, but others will choose pluggables in a router for coherent transmission.

Cisco is also discussing the changing consumption models for network silicon and optics as some customers seek fully disaggregated solutions.

https://youtu.be/RrKqRv8-7po

Broadcom ships its 25.6 Tbps Tomahawk 4

Broadcom has begun commercial shipments of its 25.6 Tbps StrataXGS Tomahawk 4 Ethernet switching silicon -- representing double the bandwidth of any other switch silicon currently on the market.

The 25.6 Tbps capacity enables port densities of up to 64 × 400GbE, 128 × 200GbE, 256 × 100GbE, 256 × 40GbE, 256 × 25GbE, or 256 × 10GbE ports.

Tomahawk 4, which is implemented in 7nm technology with 512 50G PAM4 SerDes, arrives less than two years after the previous 12.8Tbps product generation.

Tomahawk 4 is designed for the backbone for the next generation of hyperscale data center networks.

Broadcom said its Tomahawk 4 accelerates the adoption of 100/200/400GbE Ethernet solutions at a point where optics utilizing 50G PAM4 electrical connectivity are shipping in high volumes.

“The Tomahawk franchise is the flagship for cutting-edge, single-chip performance and integration among Broadcom’s multi-vectored Ethernet switch silicon portfolio, tailored to the unique and rigorous demands of hyperscale data center operators,” said Ram Velaga, senior vice president and general manager, Core Switching Group, Broadcom. “We are proud of our world-class engineering team for innovating and delivering the 25.6Tbps Tomahawk 4 chip in less than two years after we released Tomahawk 3.  Broadcom is proving yet again that customers can rely on us to lead the industry on switch silicon performance and execution at every generation.”

Key points for StrataXGS Tomahawk 4:

  • Enables the next generation of high-throughput, low latency hyperscale networks with 64 ports of 400GbE switching and routing.
  • World’s highest radix of 100GbE ports: 256 ports supported on a single chip, enabling low-latency, single-hop networks for massive alternative compute clusters.
  • Robust connectivity using 512 instances of the industry’s highest performance and longest-reach 50G PAM4 SerDes core, enabling long-reach East-West optical links and Direct-Attached-Copper in-rack cabling in the data center.
  • The industry’s most advanced 25.6Tbps shared-buffer architecture, offering up to 5X higher incast absorption and providing the highest performance and lowest end-to-end latency for RoCEv2 workloads.
  • New advanced load balancing mechanisms, virtually eliminating hash polarization and providing extremely efficient, controllable link utilization.
  • Advanced congestion management, enabling new traffic management paradigms.
  • Industry-leading instrumentation including IFA 2.0 for inband telemetry, postcards for out-of-band telemetry, SerDes link quality meters, and visibility into all on-chip packet drops and congestion events.
  • Four 1 GHz ARM processors for high-bandwidth, fully-programmable streaming telemetry and sophisticated embedded applications such as on-chip statistics summarization.
  • Implemented in a monolithic 7nm die.


Broadcom also announced the introduction of Broadcom Open Network Switch APIs (OpenNSA), opening its SDK APIs for StrataXGS and StrataDNX products. Multiple open source network operating system initiatives are underway in the disaggregation ecosystem, focused on hyperscale and service provider markets. OpenNSA enables these initiatives on merchant silicon and allows the larger community to build on top of these efforts. OpenNSA also expands Open Compute Project efforts, like Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI), by simplifying the process of translating SAI APIs to Broadcom SDK APIs. Moreover, OpenNSA accelerates the SDN ecosystem by enhancing the toolset available for the developer community.

https://www.broadcom.com/products/ethernet-connectivity/switching/strataxgs/bcm56990-series

Windstream signs its largest wavelengths deal

Windstream Wholesale signed its largest capacity wavelengths deal to date. A major hyperscale customer (unnamed) will purchase wavelengths to interconnect data centers in key cities in the United States.

Windstream said this deal, combined with additional wave capacity contracted in October, represents 5.7 terabits of capacity – the most sold in any single month at Windstream Wholesale.

Windstream Wholesale’s coast-to-coast long-haul and regional express fiber-optic network provides high-speed optical Wavelengths to support today’s massive data demands stemming from cloud computing, multimedia and bandwidth intensive applications. Our optical Wavelengths service features unique, diverse routes with high-speed connections from attractive Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets back to the most popular carrier hotels, data centers, cable landing stations and 1,200+ 1G to 100G capable POPs in Tier 1 markets in the country.

“Our flexibility and customer tailored routes coupled with our unique domestic network density in Tiers 1, 2 and 3 cities have positioned us as the ‘go-to’ provider for international carriers, content providers, fiber operators and others needing domestic diversity and redundancy,” said Joe Scattareggia, executive vice president for Wholesale Sales at Windstream. “Our Wholesale business has been on a steady growth trajectory for some time. Hitting our single highest month of capacity sold is a great accomplishment and reflects the inflection point of marketplace bandwidth demand and our network solutions designed to meet this demand.”

Nokia targets private 4G/5G networks in Japan

Nokia is building out its strategic partnership ecosystem in Japan with the goal to bring local 5G/private wireless LTE to industrial and government customers.

Spectrum designated for local 5G will be released in Japan at the end of 2019 for enterprise use.

Nokia has built a partnership eco-system with five companies spanning multiple segments, including NS Solutions for factory IoT, Marubeni for global IoT, Internet Initiative Japan for Full MVNO, Equinix for multi-cloud and global data centers, and Hitachi Kokusai Electric for smart social infrastructure and smart cities with video solutions.

John Harrington, Head of Nokia Japan, said: “Nokia Japan is strategically establishing a partnership eco-system with companies. Our aim is  to better serve the increasing needs for local 5G/private wireless LTE in Japan, which has proven its ability to provide reliable, secure, high-capacity connectivity. With spectrum availability now opening up in Japan, Nokia is bringing forth a unique combination of technology, services and partnerships to help its customers deploy end-to-end solutions that will jumpstart their digital transformations.

Fiber Broadband Association elects new leaders

The Fiber Broadband Association, which advocates for all- fiber-optic network infrastructure to the home in the Americas, announced that Katie Espeseth will serve as Chair of the Board for a one-year term beginning January 1, 2020. Espeseth has over 30 years of marketing and telecommunications experience and currently serves as Vice President of New Products at EPB.

Mark Boxer, Technical Applications Engineering Manager of OFS was elected to the Board for the first time and Kevin Morgan, Chief Marketing Officer of Clearfield and Joanne Hovis, President of CTC Technology & Energy, were both re-elected to the Board. The 2020 Management Committee was also elected: Katie Espeseth of EPB will serve as Chair; Gary Bolton of ADTRAN as Vice-Chair; Gregg Logan of Telapex, Inc. as Secretary; and Kevin Morgan of Clearfield as Treasurer.

The full 2020 Board of Directors includes:

  • Chair: Katie Espeseth, Vice President of New Products, EPB
  • Vice-Chair: Gary Bolton, Vice President of Global Marketing, ADTRAN
  • Secretary: Gregg Logan, Vice President of Engineering, Telapex, Inc. (corporate parent of the C Spire companies)
  • Treasurer: Kevin Morgan, Chief Marketing Officer, Clearfield
  • Mark Boxer, Technical Applications Engineering Manager, OFS
  • Teles Fremin, Director, LUS Fiber
  • J. Michael Hill, CEO, On Trac, Inc.
  • Joanne Hovis, President, CTC Technology & Energy
  • Joe Jensen, Americas Market Development Manager, Corning Incorporated



See also