ATCA Platform Delivers On SDN/NFV Promise

ATCA Platform Delivers On SDN/NFV Promise

The trend towards software defined networking (SDN) and its partner, network function virtualization (NFV), is clear. The need to increase performance while lowering costs is more important than ever. The challenge is to deliver hardware that can support these technologies in a fast an efficient manner. Radisys’ T-100 platform is designed to support SDN and NFV.

The T-100 implements the typical SDN/NFV architecture (Fig. 1). The management and orchestration functions control the virtualization layer were the functions operate.

Figure 1. The typical SDN/NFV architecture employs a management and orchestration section that oversees system operation.

The AdvancedTCA (ATCA) platform starts with a 14-slot T-100 Ultra chassis (Fig. 2). The A2470 intelligent switch blades deliver over 2 Tbits/s of bandwidth. The 6-slot T-100 Pro chassis delivers 640 Gbits/s of bandwidth.

Figure 2. The T-100 employs a set of A2470 intelligent switch blades and runs NFV support on the A4700 Haswell-based compute blades.

Virtual machines run on the A4700 Intel Haswell-based Xeon compute blades. Radisys’ FlowEngine technology delivers wirespeed flow classification. It allows the switch to quickly identify packets and adjust the data flow (Fig. 3). It essentially handles routing table updates without requiring software management thereby improving system latency by a factor of 50.

Figure 3. Radisys builds on the SDN architecture but streamlines the flow assignments locally providing a 50x latency improvement.

The SDN support is compatible with OpenFlow. It employs a Broadcom Trident II switch chip as well as an EzChip NP-5 network processor. The NP-5 provides additional compute power to handle the 4x 100 Gbit/s FlowEngine support at line speed.

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