SiPanda Launches to Rethink the Network Infrastructure Datapath, Create New Level of Performance
SANTA CLARA, Calif., Feb. 19, 2020 – Today SiPanda Inc. introduces Protocol And Network Datapath Acceleration (PANDA), an open-source domain-specific programming model and parser for high performance network infrastructure. PANDA establishes a model that allows efficient implementation in software running on commodity CPUs and facilitates implementation in accelerated hardware for maximum performance benefit while maintaining programming flexibility. The goal of PANDA is to enable enable data center infrastructure operators like cloud service providers (CSPs) to deliver fully software-programable data and control paths that support line rates of 200Gbps to 1.2Tbps and higher.
Hyperscalers have been building their own programmable network infrastructure using a disaggregated topology to abstract functions like networking, storage, virtualization, and security away from the compute/CPU complex. This model has worked well until now, but it cannot sustain network performance at next generation speeds of 200Gbps and beyond without compromising software programmability. Non-hyperscale CSPs have had to rely on incumbent I/O vendors for their networking solutions. These vendors, burdened by their legacy technologies, have simply iterated their current architectures and technologies to enable them to run at 100Gbs, but they cannot deliver the flexibility that CSPs need to be competitive.
SiPanda’s vision is to enable an open source C/C++ programing model that can be used by network architects and developers utilizing existing hardware accelerators and PANDA native purpose-built accelerators to provide software programmability at wire-speed performance.
“Effectively utilizing the network infrastructure while meeting the latency and throughput requirements for distributed applications at scale has always been a challenge for system architects and web-centric application developers,” said Tom Herbert, founder and Chief Technical Officer of SiPanda. “Our architecture rethinks the network datapath to simultaneously deliver wire-speed performance and maximum flexibility. The first part of that architecture is PANDA, an easy-of-use programming model that delivers the high-performance network programming solution all organizations need, without requiring an army of specialists to maintain it.”
The PANDA Parser breaks the traditional network datapath paradigm and introduces the flexibility that hyperscalers enjoy to everyone. It will compliment and work with modern network datapath frameworks and tools such as DPDK, P4, and Linux kernel (XDP/eBPF and TC Flower) to provide a comprehensive solution for network programmability while maintaining performance. PANDA provides a low-level abstraction that runs on top of existing network hardware, exploiting opportunities for parallelism in I/O processing pipelines to accelerate data plane operations. The low-level abstraction approach enables network and application architects to program the capabilities that they want to add to their network in C/C++, parse it using PANDA, and then run it across their suite of existing network hardware with minimal additional effort and without the need to rewrite their software to work on each target platform.
Over the next few months SiPanda will be rolling out the PANDA open source project. As the company progresses, SiPanda will complement PANDA with its Panda-V serial data processing accelerator based on a domain specific, enhanced OpenISA RISC-V architecture. The Panda-V will accelerate the network datapath in a similar way that GPUs accelerate graphics. All this builds towards SiPanda’s ultimate goal to provide network infrastructure with wire-speed performance, security, flexibility, and ease-of-use that scales to speeds greater than 1Tbps, with flexibility at scale for arbitrarily complex and demanding applications.
SiPanda was created to rethink the network datapath and bring both flexibility and wire-speed performance at scale to networking infrastructure. The SiPanda architecture enables data center infrastructure operators and application architects to build solutions for cloud service providers to edge compute (5G) that don’t require the compromises inherent in today’s network solutions. For more information, please visit www.sipanda.io.