VMware Obtains Another SDN Option with PLUMgrid Buy

PLUMgrid is a natural for VMware, because the Palo Alto-based company is investing heavily in network virtualization, security and OpenStack IP.

Virtualization superpower VMware has acquired the intellectual property and some staff members from software-defined networking startup PLUMgrid.

A VMware spokesman said the deal closed Dec. 16, SDxCentral reported Dec. 19. No information was disclosed regarding a purchase price.

The acquiring company apparently isn't offering further details, and there's no information on which executives of Santa Clara, Calif.-based PLUMgrid might be asked to move across Silicon Valley to join VMware.

Last March, PLUMgrid launched the newest version of its networking virtualization offerings that included support for the latest releases of the OpenStack cloud orchestration stack.

The company unveiled Open Networking Suite (ONS) 5.0, which supports the Kilo and Liberty releases of OpenStack for both service providers and enterprises. PLUMgrid offers both SDN and network-functions virtualization (NFV) technologies for OpenStack-based cloud environments.

PLUMgrid is a natural for VMware, because the Palo Alto-based company is investing heavily in network virtualization, security and OpenStack IP. VMware has been covering the first two categories with its NSX hypervisor, and it since has made available its own OpenStack distribution.

Along with the Kilo and Liberty support, ONS 5.0 also comes with a range of new features designed to make it easier to deploy OpenStack clouds and more efficient to run them, PLUMgrid said.

With the latest ONS release, customers that are running virtual machines, containers and bare-metal architectures in their environments can use SDN overlays for micro-segmentation for multi-tenancy, traffic isolation and policy enforcement to make management easier.

ONS 5.0 includes support for Docker containers, improved gateway integration with Cisco Systems' Nexus 9000 switches, IPv6, and PLUMgrid's new SmartLogs technology.

For the last few years, VMware has been making major changes within its NSX hypervisor to accommodate containers, which are among the hottest IT trends of the last decade.

PLUMgrid's technology, introduced in 2013, gives enterprise customers another option to capitalize on SDN, bringing a different approach from contemporaries such as Nicira (acquired by VMware) or Big Switch Networks.

Rather than create an SDN controller to dictate instructions to switches, PLUMgrid created IO Visor, an I/O processor that sits in the Linux kernel and controls virtual domains for network virtualization, monitoring, and security. IO Visor has since become a Linux Foundation project.

Founded in 2011, PLUMgrid raised a total of $27 million in venture funding.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger is Editor of Features & Analysis at eWEEK, responsible in part for the publication's coverage areas. In his 10 years and more than 3,500 stories at eWEEK, he has distinguished...