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SDN Blog roundup: OpenDaylight controller details; SDN/IP gateways

In this week's SDN blog roundup, bloggers discuss OpenFlow and SDN basics, SDN/IP gateways and details regarding the new OpenDaylight controller.

VMware launches network virtualization blog

While pulling together this week's blog roundup, we discovered that VMware Inc. recently launched a blog dedicated solely to network virtualization. VMware's Roger Fortier introduces the blog as a place where the company will engage with the industry about the trends and developments associated with network virtualization. "We will offer you forward-thinking vision -- from inside and outside of VMware -- coupled with tangible and actionable information about network virtualization deployments," Fortier writes.

Check out the rest of Fortier's post and VMware's new network virtualization blog.

A look at OpenFlow SDN fundamentals

Ivan Pepelnjak takes a look at a recent OpenFlow/SDN presentation by Stanford University's Scott Shenker on his IP Space blog. In his post, Pepelnjak highlights a few points of the talk, saying the seminar is ideal for anyone who wants insight into the basics of SDN and for anyone remotely involved in networking.

Pepelnjak notes in his blog that he agrees with Shenker on one major point: Network virtualization is the "killer app," while SDN is simply a means to an end. Additionally, Pepelnjak recaps, a network should have a complex edge and a simple core, while today's networks are full of middle boxes that are already x86-based -- the functionality of which should be moved to x86-based devices at the network edge.

Read Pepelnjak's full recap of Shenker's talk and discover more SDN fundamentals.

Imaginary SDN/IP gateways: Could they work?

On the Packet Pushers site, author Steven Iveson holds up an imaginary blueprint for an SDN/IP gateway and asks readers if they believe this could work. Iveson includes a blueprint image in his post and later describes three areas of the gateway in more detail: tables, performance and overall architecture.

After explaining his thinking behind this imaginary blueprint, Iveson warns that in this new world view, the central tenants of traditional networks will be forever reversed.

Check out more of Iveson's thinking behind an SDN/IP gateway blueprint and some of the challenges it could post.

Overlay networking and tunnel fabrics

Ethereal Mind author Greg Ferro writes an outline of how overlay networking and tunnel fabrics work. The post is the first of what will be upcoming posts focusing on the nature of tunnel fabrics in physical network environments, he explains.

Ferro lists a number of sections that detail instructions on how overlay networking works with tunnel fabrics. He discusses hypervisors and network connections, as well as network limitations and the value of software.

Ferro ends his post by addressing performance problems. The final point of software-based network devices, he writes, are their impact on the speed of configuration changes -- "the use of standard and common software on standard and common hardware creates opportunity for rapid development of new features."

View Ferros' full post on how overlay networking and tunnel fabrics work as well as the benefits and challenges of getting them to work together.


On the CohesiveFT blog, Chris Swan addresses software-defined networking (SDN) versus network functions virtualization (NFV), which is a hot topic among IT professionals. Swan illustrates the overlap between the two concepts, writing that since both SDN and NFV relate to networking and software, it's easy to confuse the two, especially with regard to implementations.

Swan also outlines standards as they relate to SDN and NFV -- specifically, OpenFlow for SDN and the fact that standards for NFV have yet to emerge, although there is some work happening at ETSI. Swan ends his post with a recap of the benefits of SDN, as well as the advantages of NFV, which, in his view, depend more on your perspective.

Read Swan's full post on how NVF and SDN overlap yet differ.

OpenDaylight Controller details released

Amidst the news that Big Switch is stepping away from the OpenDaylight Project, details of the project's controller finally have come to light, writes author Matthew Palmer on SDNCentral. According to the site, the core controller software includes Beacon, which is also included in Cisco's and Big Switch's controllers. The Service Abstraction Layer and OSGi framework that Cisco added to Beacon is included as well, while add-ons to the controller include host-tracking, tunnel management and minor features that Big Switch added to Beacon to create Floodlight.

SDNCentral featured a few questions regarding the controller as well as advice for network vendors and developers on how the controller will impact them.

Read SDNCentral's full post outlining OpenDaylight controller details and advice going forward.

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