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Pluribus Unveils SDN Fabric for Virtualized Networking

The company's VCF offers a virtualized networking fabric that enables organizations to run their virtual and physical networks as a single unit.

network virtualization

Pluribus Networks wants to make the complex task of running and managing physical and virtual networks as a single unit easier.

The startup this week announced its Virtualization-Centric Fabric (VCF), an architecture for the software-defined networking (SDN) space that is part of the company's Netvisor operating system that runs on open switches. VCF offers a completely virtualized networking fabric that offers the elastic connectivity needed by virtual workloads and their distributed services, according to company officials.

The fabric can address challenges that are arising as data centers become increasingly virtualized and software-defined, according to Sunay Tripathi, co-founder and CTO at Pluribus.

"As virtualized PODs (typically a collection of hundreds of servers installed in 4-20 racks and running virtual machines and/or containers, all connected via a leaf/spine switch) become more prevalent as the unit of measure of an application building blocks, the need for running the virtual and physical network as one entity has become critical and is regularly cited as the number one customer pain point," Tripathi wrote in a post on the company blog. "This pain point becomes more amplified as users begin to form their private clouds, Hybrid clouds, or fully articulated Software Defined Data Centers (SDDC)."

The VCF, which is available now, enables the creation of a virtualized networking fabric at the hardware layer in dedicated switches, rather than consume resources at the server level, officials said. Each switch in the fabric is an equal partner and has visibility into the entire network and its endpoints. Automation capabilities ensure virtualized connectivity across the fabric, no matter the number of switches or other systems involved.

It also includes virtual port (vPort) and virtual network (vNet) segmentation, which enables any physical or virtual source to be combined into virtual networks, and Virtual TAP offers visibility into information flowing between a physical or virtual source or destination. Pluribus also is offering virtual fabric APIs using such programming interfaces as REST, Java, JSON and C++ and command-line interface (CLI) capabilities.

"Netvisor's VCF architecture solves this problem by fundamentally changing the architecture of the operating system installed on each switch to align more closely with the proven approach seen with server virtualization," Tripathi wrote. "VCF virtualizes resources, and then allows those resources to be applied to specific business needs."