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April 2017, Vol. 8, No. 3

Barefoot Networks' Ethernet switch chip wins Network Innovation Award

TechTarget's latest Network Innovation Award winner -- Barefoot Networks' high-speed Ethernet switch chip, called Tofino -- promises to bring the programmability of software-defined networking to the forwarding plane, without slowing down performance. Barefoot first came out of stealth mode late last year, and Edgecore Networks and WNC recently introduced white box switches with the 6.5 Tbps silicon. SearchNetworking spoke with Ed Doe, vice president of products and marketing at Barefoot Networks, based in Palo Alto, Calif., to learn more about Tofino. Editor's note: This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity. What problem does Barefoot Networks' Ethernet switch chip solve? Ed Doe: Data planes inside of networks have always been very rigid and fixed -- hardcoded into the chips that drive Ethernet switches and routers. Barefoot has come up with an open source programmable chip technology that allows people to innovate at the speed of programming. You can update that forwarding or data plane through an open ...

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