NOVISWITCH SERVICE CHAINING FOR MANAGING SERVICE ACCESS
NoviFlow’s NoviSwitches make it possible to deliver the new Service Chaining protocols at line rate, even with complex match-action rules, huge populations of devices and users, and highly dynamic networks where the rule set is in constant flux with a high rate of change.
A DIFFERENT NETWORK FOR EVERY USER AND EVERY SERVICE
Delivery of end-to-end services from Network Providers and Enterprise datacenters has rapidly moved away from a static environment with dedicated devices and manually configured switches. A new paradigm of Virtual Network Functions (VNFs) running on commodity servers connected via a programmable switch fabric emerged. In this paradigm, the VNFs and the switching fabric are managed with Orchestration technologies. However, as users and usages of network services multiplied, so did the requirements to support multiple different characteristics of bandwidth, latency, access type, quality of service, provisioning systems, and so on. Managing the flow of packets across this chain of services in a datacenter according to user expectations – and service level agreements – has become a major challenge.
The problem of managing complex Service Chaining was addressed by a new standard – RFC 7665 Service Function Chaining Architecture. It specifies the following functions: how packets are controlled through the network to visit the VNFs assigned in a service chaining policy, how the network service chaining management software works, and how the planned service chain is inserted into the packet as a new type of header.
This is a great step forward. However service chaining functionality comes at the cost of requiring a great deal more agility and sophisticated capability than legacy networks were designed to provide.
THE NOVISWITCH DIFFERENCE
NoviFlow is at the forefront of implementing the Service Chaining Standard. Here's why: unlike legacy network equipment, NoviFlow’s NoviSwitches are architected from the ground-up to deliver a networking fabric optimized for implementing programmable forwarding planes: very large table sizes, multiple tables, packet payload matching and traffic handling at line rate for even hyperscale networks.
NoviSwitches uses Network Processors (NPUs), which provide both high throughput and full programmability. When combined with NoviFlow’s NoviWare NOS, NoviSwitch provides a silicon based forwarding plane that is 2 to 3 orders of magnitude faster than x86 processors, yet can deliver the fully programmable packet pipeline needed to provide both the agility and scalability required by today’s networks.
NoviSwitch's huge rule-set capabilities enable the largest providers to have detailed Service Function Chains for each customer, even if this requires millions of rules. NoviFlow switches provide line-rate Classification, Service Function Forwarding (SFF), and the policy Classification services, as defined in RFC 7665, eliminating the need for expensive dedicated equipment to provide the SFF and Classification services.
Also, each NoviSwitch runs the NoviWare Network Operating Software (NOS) which is field upgradable so that new features and capabilities can be added via software upgrades, protecting the value and prolonging the useful lifetime of installed switches. In addition, NoviWare also features advanced SFC features to manage a Service Chain domain in concert with OpenFlow controller applications that interacts with VM Orchestration packages to implement the service chaining policy on the NoviFlow switches.