Mellanox and Red Hat Deliver Enhanced Performance and Simplicity for NFV Infrastructure and Agile Cloud Data Centers

June 3, 2018

Mellanox Technologies, a leading supplier of high-performance, end-to-end smart interconnect solutions for data center servers and storage systems, today announced that the ConnectX family of Ethernet NICs are supported for OVS-DPDK on Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

This enables an open and easy-to-deploy Network Function Virtualization (NFV) and cloud data center solution with 10X performance boost due to datapath optimization technologies such as Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK) and Open Virtual Switch (OVS) hardware acceleration.

While disaggregation and virtualization bring agility and efficiency to cloud and NFV infrastructure, this comes at the cost of significant network performance penalties. Over-provisioning of CPU cores to improve performance leads to much higher CapEx, and reduces total infrastructure efficiency. Furthermore, poor integration of disaggregated components results in high total cost of ownership (TCO).

To address these challenges, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.5 now offers inbox support for Mellanox ConnectX intelligent NICs running DPDK and Accelerated Switching and Packet Processing (ASAP²) OVS offload technologies. The DPDK software library improves OVS and VNF performance, at the expense of high CPU load.

ASAP² extends these capabilities to achieve high performance and efficiency, without loading the CPU. ASAP² fully and transparently offloads CPU packet processing tasks to the ConnectX embedded switch accelerations. ASAP² accelerates performance of key networking functions such as overlays, switching, routing, firewalls, and load balancing by an order of magnitude.

“Mellanox embraces open networking and is a top contributor to the Linux kernel community. Through our cutting-edge NIC technologies, and joint innovation with the world’s leading provider of open source solutions such as Red Hat, we help to eliminate the performance barriers associated with deploying software defined cloud and NFV solutions,” said Dror Goldenberg, vice president of software architecture at Mellanox Technologies. “Moreover, this performance is achieved without sacrificing valuable server resources, agility, or ease of deployment.”

“In a production-ready NFV and cloud data center solution, a high-performance, low-latency and high-density networking infrastructure layer is a critical component for both a high quality end user experience and improved cloud infrastructure efficiency,” said Gunnar Hellekson, senior director, Product Management, Red Hat. “Mellanox’s high-performance NIC networking products combined with the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform enables us to deliver innovative designs to achieve high levels of scalability, reliability and efficiency in a virtualized cloud and NFV environment.”

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