I was recently asked for a few bullet points on some recent “interesting network infrastructure developments”. In the five minutes I had, I offered the following:
- TRILL – Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links – a new layer 2 routing protocol which promises to replace STP. What’s really interesting about TRILL is that it does not need to be loop free; there are no blocking ports; and frames can take the shortest path. See http://www.ipjforum.org/?p=582 and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TRILL_(computing).
- Open Networking Foundation – https://www.opennetworking.org/ – “The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) is a non-profit consortium dedicated to the transformation of networking through the development and standardization of a unique architecture called Software-Defined Networking (SDN), which brings direct software programmability to networks worldwide. The mission of the Foundation is to commercialize and promote SDN and the underlying technologies as a disruptive approach to networking that will change how virtually every company with a network operates.” – members include Facebook, Google and Microsoft.
- OpenFlow – http://www.openflow.org/ – “OpenFlow enables networks to evolve, by giving a remote controller the power to modify the behavior of network devices, through a well-defined “forwarding instruction set”. The growing OpenFlow ecosystem now includes routers, switches, virtual switches, and access points from a range of vendors.” – adopted by Googleand others.
- OpenCompute – slightly off networking but relevant – http://opencompute.org/ – “A small team of Facebook engineers spent the past two years tackling a big challenge: how to scale our computing infrastructure in the most efficient and economical way possible. … Everyone has full access to these specifications. We want you to tell us where we didn’t get it right and suggest how we could improve. And opening the technology means the community will make advances that we wouldn’t have discovered if we had kept it secret.”