Big Switch Advances Next-Generation to Accelerate SDN-Based Network Transformation

Big Switch Networks®, the leader in bringing hyperscale-inspired networking to data centers worldwide, today announced significant updates to its SDN-based Big Monitoring Fabric™ and Big Cloud Fabric™ solutions. The new releases provide broader support for key customer use cases in security monitoring, network function virtualization (NFV) and IP storage, as well as support for the latest open networking switches. Furthermore, with enhancements to visibility, troubleshooting and automated network operations, Big Switch continues its rapid pace of innovation to transform data center networking.

New capabilities in Big Monitoring Fabric include advanced feature additions to the Big Switch DPDK service node and enhanced network services for out-of-band network monitoring to achieve pervasive network visibility and security. Big Cloud Fabric updates include deeper integration with VMware vSphere®, and support for Red Hat OpenStack Platform 8, with a recently completed 300 node scale benchmark validation test with Dell & Red Hat. Big Switch is also announcing support for the latest open networking switches based on Broadcom Trident-II+ and Tomahawk ASICs, including copper 10G (10GbT) and higher-density 64x40G to double the scale of both SDN fabric solutions. With these new capabilities, Big Switch delivers next-generation network visibility and automation to any company, any workload, at any scale.

“This has been an extremely rewarding period for the company as we continue to earn the trust of customers around the world who are increasingly selecting Big Switch technologies to modernize their data centers,” said Douglas Murray, CEO, Big Switch Networks. “We understand the importance of innovation velocity and are rapidly adding transformational capabilities in support of our mission to make hyperscale-inspired networking available to anyone.”

Big Monitoring Fabric
Big Monitoring Fabric (BMF) is a next-generation network packet broker (NPB) that leverages SDN principles, Open Networking switches and an x86-based DPDK service node to provide feature-rich, scale-out data center monitoring at 50% less cost than traditional NPBs. Big Monitoring Fabric supports 1G, 10G, 40G and 100G for the most demanding and high volume network monitoring environments.

New Big Monitoring Fabric Capabilities include:

  • DPDK service node with advanced features, now including header stripping and Netflow generation support, in addition to packet slicing, de-dup, and Regex.
    • Header stripping service allows removal of user-defined packet header as well as well-known encapsulation protocols such as VXLAN, MPLS, ERSPAN.
    • Netflow generation service enables flow-level granularity for deeper security as well as network monitoring.
  • Integration with leading Technical Solution Partners
    • Certified joint solution through Blue Coat’s ETM Ready Program (Encrypted Traffic Management) helps customers combat sophisticated attacks by addressing malware hiding in SSL traffic.
    • Big Monitoring Fabric with the Riverbed SteelCentral NetExpress network performance management platform delivers all-in-one network monitoring solution combining flow and packet collection and analysis for the entire data center. Additionally, Riverbed NetExpress collects and visualizes Netflow data that is generated by the Big Monitoring Fabric service node.

Popular customer use cases for Big Monitoring Fabric include: monitoring every rack, mobile/LTE monitoring and remote DC monitoring & DMZ/Extranet inline security.

One of the fastest growing use-cases for Big Monitoring Fabric is Inline Monitoring, which is driven by cybersecurity needs. The inline mode radically simplifies software-based policy tool chaining for dramatically hardened inline network security, and scalable load balancing. Benefits include:

  • Scale-out security tool chaining
  • Operational simplicity throughout its life-cycle of deploy, provision and maintain
  • Deployment flexibility leading to infrastructure efficiency and CAPEX reduction.

Big Cloud Fabric
Big Cloud Fabric (BCF) delivers next-generation networking — the promise of hyper-scale agility, economics and operational simplicity delivered to OpenStack Platform clouds or VMware virtualization environments. BCF is the industry’s first leaf/spine SDN fabric to support open networking switches. In OpenStack environments, the BCF controller acts as a single pane of glass for network provisioning, troubleshooting, visibility and analytics of the entire physical and virtual network environment, delivering tremendous improvements in network agility, automation and operational efficiency. In VMware environments, BCF connects with vCenter APIs to provide physical network automation and visibility for vSphere, and can serve as a network fabric underlay for VMware NSX™ network virtualization deployments.

Updates to Big Cloud Fabric include:

  • NFV Everywhere — To expand NFV deployments beyond the data center to Central Offices, smaller POPs and remote locations via NEBS support, a new VM controller option and stretched-fabric deployments
  • Enhanced VMware vCenter GUI Plug-in — To deliver physical network automation, visibility and now troubleshooting directly from vCenter to simplify provisioning and operations for the cloud/virtualization admin.
  • Support for Software-Defined Storage — In addition to traditional IP storage, now supports production deployments with Red Hat Ceph
  • Inter-Pod/Inter-DC L2 Extension — Enables tenant services and application mobility across pods and data centers leveraging VXLAN (beta support)
  • Expanded SDN Security — Crypto security for SDN control-plane (CPSec) now includes controller-to-vSwitch and controller-to-controller traffic as well as controller-to-pSwitch previously supported
  • Container Networking Demonstration — Plug-in for Kubernetes container orchestration to demonstrate network automation, visibility and troubleshooting in Docker container environment

The Preferred OpenStack Networking Solution
Big Cloud Fabric provides the industry’s most scalable, high performance, production ready Neutron networking. Recently, Verizon announced it had selected technology from Red Hat, Big Switch and Dell to develop its OpenStack pod-based design that went from concept to deployment of more than 50 racks in five production data centers in less than nine months. The unified P+V architecture enables full network resiliency at scale, with no hairpinning of traffic, efficient use of compute resources and purpose built design for high availability.
New Capabilities and Benefits of BCF for OpenStack include:

  • Seamless Integration with OpenStack — Optimized integration with Red Hat Open Stack Platform 8 (RHOSP 8) helps ease deployment
  • Most scalable OpenStack SDN solution — Prove and tested in a 300 node scale benchmark with Red Hat OpenStack Platform, and Dell open networking switches at the Dell Open Networking center of excellence
  • Integration with F5 LBaaS — Validated solution with RHOSP 8 offers ease of tenant-aware application delivery for OpenStack Clouds
  • Tenant-level Service Insertion with Palo Alto Firewall — Joint BCF P+V OpenStack solution offers tenant-level security with seamless insertion of Palo Alto firewall to secure both north-south and east-west traffic across BCF

Expanded Support for Open Networking Hardware — Both Big Monitoring Fabric and Big Cloud Fabric to support latest Broadcom Trident-II+ and Tomahawk based Open Networking switches from Dell and Edgecore Networks, including:

  • 64x40G: Dell’s S6100 high-density Broadcom Tomahawk-based platform to double 40G fabric scale for both Big Cloud Fabric and Big Monitoring Fabric
  • 10GbT: Copper 10G platform (48x10GbT + 6x40G) based on Broadcom Trident-II+ for cost-optimized deployments
  • 32x40G and 48x10G + 6x40G: fiber 10G and 40G platforms based on Broadcom Trident-II+

These platforms are available for beta trials in Q3 2016.

Community Edition Sweepstakes
Visit to learn about the Big Switch Community Edition use-case contest. Four winners will be selected from the community based on proposed use cases. Switch hardware and software will be provided to the winning entries, selected based on a panel of judges comprised of Big Switch, Industry Analysts, and peers.

Company Momentum and Customer Adoption
In early 2016 Big Switch announced its Series C funding for $48.5M, which included participation from both new and existing investors. Big Switch now has multiple customer deals in excess of $1M+, customers are based across the US, APAC and EMEA regions, in verticals including tech, financial services, government, telecom, and higher education.

Customers include Verizon, the U.S. Federal Government, Intuit, Clemson University, CleanSafeCloud, U2 Cloud, 10 of the 15 largest telcos in the world, multiple global financial services firms, media companies, and a Fortune 5 oil & gas company.

Big Switch’s BSN Labs, which enables instant access to its products via an online, hands-on testbed demo environment in the cloud, now has more than 3000 active users since its release in early 2015. Additionally, in early 2016, Big Switch announced the release of Community Edition, an industry-first freemium offering for data center networking. The software is a perpetual license of both Big Monitoring Fabric and Big Cloud Fabric that can be downloaded for use in lab and development environments. Community Edition makes it easy for organizations to download software on premise and provides the opportunity to experience SDN fabrics and open networking switches.

Supporting Materials
Data sheet – Big Monitoring Fabric 5.7
Data sheet – Big Cloud Fabric 3.6
Blog – Reflections on Open Networking Hardware and SDN Software
Blog – Accelerating Network Transformation with Big Cloud Fabric 3.6 and Big Monitoring Fabric 5.7
Blog –  Big Cloud Fabric Automation and Visibility for IP Storage and Hyperconverged Infratructure
Case study – Industry’s Largest NFV Deployment
Video – Kubernetes Container Orchestration with Big Cloud Fabric
Video – Big Cloud Fabric P+V Fabric With RHOSP 8
Video – Netflow Generation with Big Monitoring Fabric
Video – VMware VSAN Integration with Big Cloud Fabric

Tweet This: Big Switch continues quest for datacenter modernization with updates to #bigmonitoringfabric and #bigcloudfabric

Supporting Quotes
“Big Switch continues its rapid pace of innovation for the Big Cloud Fabric and Big Monitoring Fabric solutions. Its new capabilities for BCF increase the scale and flexibility of the fabric in important customer environments, and the enhancements to BMF provide deeper understanding of users’ traffic and stronger protection of customers’ data in the cloud. With these new capabilities Big Switch continues to show it is up to the task of delivering necessary and compelling functionality in an open fabric environment along with powerful economic benefits.” — Paul Parker-Johnson, Principal Analyst, Cloud + Virtual System Infrastructures, ACG Research

“Increasingly, today’s security administrators are forced to deploy multiple security tools to protect enterprise applications, data and users from sophisticated security threats,” said Peter Doggart, vice president of business development, Blue Coat Systems, Inc. “This has increased operational complexity across network and security domains tremendously, requiring a new and agile security architecture to address the need. Our partnership with Big Switch has enabled enterprise customers to deploy our powerful solution to detect, prevent and combat security threats in encrypted traffic while preserving data privacy, policy and regulatory compliance.”

“Dell’s Open Networking strategy is centered around customer choice. Through our collaborative solutions with Big Switch Networks, we help provide customers the best options to fit their specific needs,” said Adnan Bhutta, Director, Global Strategy, Dell Networking. “Our work with Big Switch is a prime example of our focus in bringing next-generation, flexible, open networking solutions to our customers.”

“Open networking solutions provide a low cost and flexible infrastructure aligned to our customers’ operational requirements,” Jeff Catlin, VP Technology, Edgecore Networks. “Edgecore Networks Ethernet hardware switches, together with Big Switch Networks’ Big Cloud Fabric and Big Tap products provide customers with complete SDN solutions that reduce capital and operating costs while enabling more rapid provisioning of new applications and capacity.”

“F5 and Big Switch have tested and validated interoperability between the F5 BIG-IP LBaaS Plug-in for OpenStack and the Big Cloud Fabric.” said Phil de la Motte, Sr. Director Business Development, F5. “Through this joint solution our customers can significantly improve networking flexibility while easing the deployment process for BIG-IP services into their data center.”

“OpenStack is gaining tremendous momentum for building clouds due to agility, flexibility and operational efficiency benefits,” said Radhesh Balakrishnan, general manager, OpenStack, Red Hat. “Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Ceph Storage with Big Switch’s SDN-powered Big Cloud Fabric provides a highly scalable, operationally simple, and production-ready solution for deploying NFV OpenStack clouds, as exhibited in the recent deployment at Verizon.”

“Together, Riverbed and Big Switch are providing end-to-end solutions that offer deep visibility and control to inspect, direct, and protect workloads for data center and private cloud environments,” said Katie Colbert, VP, Global Technology Alliances, at Riverbed. “With proprietary data center networks rapidly transitioning to open SDN fabrics, we see tremendous opportunity to accelerate customers’ demand for network and application performance monitoring by leveraging innovative software-centric architectures from Big Switch.”

“As customers accelerate adoption of the software-defined data center, Big Switch Networks continues to deliver innovative solutions that enable greater IT automation and agility for the data center’s physical fabric,” said Geoff Huang, director of product marketing, networking and security business unit at VMware. “Together, VMware and Big Switch are helping our mutual customers redefine the economics and operations of modern IT through software-defined infrastructure.”

About Big Switch Networks
Big Switch Networks is the market leader in bringing hyperscale data center networking technologies to a mainstream data center audience. The company is taking three key hyperscale technologies — OEM/ODM bare metal and open Ethernet switch hardware, sophisticated SDN control software, and core-and-pod data center designs — and leveraging them in fit-for-purpose products designed for use in enterprises, cloud providers, and service providers. The company’s Big Monitoring Fabric is a feature-rich next-generation Network Packet Broker to monitor and protect existing networks, and Big Cloud Fabric is the industry’s most advanced open networking switching fabric intended for new data center pods such as OpenStack private cloud, VMware NSX, big data, and VDI. For additional information, email, follow @bigswitch, or visit

Big Switch Networks, Big Cloud Fabric, Big Monitoring Fabric, Switch Light OS, and Switch Light VX are trademarks or registered trademarks of Big Switch Networks, Inc. VMware, vSphere, NSX, and vCenter are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other trademarks, service marks, registered marks, or registered service marks are the property of their respective owners.