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Open switch pipeline specification targets SDN app

Posted: 05 Mar 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Broadcom  SDN  open switch pipeline specification  network virtualization  Ethernet switch 

Broadcom Corp. has released the OpenFlow Data Plane Abstraction (OF-DPA) v1.0 specification, software and API. According to the company, it is 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, one of the methods for implementing software-defined networking (SDN), 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.

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.

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