Broadcom announces OpenFlow Data Plane Abstraction - Embedded.com

Broadcom announces OpenFlow Data Plane Abstraction

Open Networking Summit, 2014  — Broadcom Corporation has announced the OpenFlow Data Plane Abstraction (OF-DPA) v1.0 specification, software, and API, the industry's first openly published implementation of physical switch hardware pipeline abstraction for the Open Networking Foundation's (ONF) OpenFlow 1.3.1 Switch.

OpenFlow enables a standardized way of delivering a centralized, programmable network that can dynamically address changing application requirements. The OF-DPA v1.0 specification, software and API can be used to implement popular use cases such as network virtualization, multi-tenant networks and traffic engineering with higher scale and performance. For more details, view Broadcom's white paper, Engineered Elephant Flows for Boosting Application Performance in Large Scale CLOS Networks.”

The OpenFlow Switch in the ONF 1.3.1 specification defines a pipeline that contains multiple tables, each table containing multiple flow entries. The OpenFlow pipeline processing defines how packets interact with these tables. The OF-DPA v1.0 physical switch hardware pipeline abstraction is an implementation of the OpenFlow 1.3.1 Switch optimized for Broadcom StrataXGS Ethernet Switch devices.  The OF-DPA v1.0 software and API enables OpenFlow 1.3.1 agents and controllers to access multiple tables implemented in Broadcom switch devices. The intent is to facilitate general availability of production-quality OpenFlow 1.3.1 switches from OEM and ODM vendors as well as provide a reference platform for use by end users and in academic and industrial research networks.

Broadcom's OF-DPA v1.0 reference platform includes a comprehensive OpenFlow 1.3.1compliant specification, software and API for the Broadcom physical switch hardware pipeline abstraction, and an application development kit.  The OF-DPA v1.0 software and API can be used with any OpenFlow 1.3.1 agent and controller and is layered over Broadcom's currently available switch software development kit (SDK). The reference platform also includes a turnkey package with an open source reference agent (based on Indigo 2.0) on ODM platforms and hardware systems based on Broadcom-contributed OCP Open Switch Specification . The turnkey package is integrated with the open source RYU OpenFlow 1.3.1 Controller .  

Beta version of OF-DPA v1.0 software is available now from GitHub with the generally available (GA) version expected in March, 2014.  The following switch platforms are supported by the OF-DPA v1.0 reference platform turnkey package – the T3048-LY2 switch based on StrataXGS Trident+ from Quanta and the OCP Open Switch Specification (draft) compliant switch system Niagara 2948-6XLM-OCP based on StrataXGS Trident II from Interface Masters Technologies.  

The following OF-DPA related demonstrations will be displayed at the 2014 Open Networking Summit:

  1. Broadcom will present a workshop at the developer track on Open SDN Stack. The workshop will cover how to use OF-DPA in an open hardware and software environment.
  2. Big Switch Networks will be demonstrating OF-DPA running in Open Network Linux
  3. Adara Networks will demonstrate use of OF-DPA and StrataXGS Trident II for performing Infrastructure Orchestration and VNF Service Choreography in Multi-tenant Datacenters. 

More information   

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