Category Archives: Cloud Computing

InfiniBand Enables the Most Powerful Cloud: Windows Azure

windows_Azure_logo12Windows Azure continues to be the leader in High-Performance Computing Cloud services. Delivering a HPC solution built on top of Windows Server technology and Microsoft HPC Pack, Windows Azure offers the performance and scalability of a world-class supercomputing center to everyone, on demand, in the cloud.

 

Customers can now run compute-intensive workloads such as parallel Message Passing Interface (MPI) applications with HPC Pack in Windows Azure. By choosing compute intensive instances such as A8 and A9 for the cloud compute resources, customers can deploy these compute resources on demand in Windows Azure in a “burst to the cloud” configuration, and take advantage of InfiniBand interconnect technology with low-latency and high-throughput, including Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) technology for maximum efficiency. The new high performance A8 and A9 compute instances also provide customers with ample memory and the latest CPU technology.

 

The new Windows Azure services can burst and scale on-demand, deploy Virtual Machines and Cloud Services when users require them.  Learn more about Azure new services: http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/solutions/big-compute/

eli karpilovski
Author: Eli Karpilovski manages the Cloud Market Development at Mellanox Technologies. In addition, Mr. Karpilovski serves as the Cloud Advisory Council Chairman. Mr. Karpilovski served as product manager for the HCA Software division at Mellanox Technologies. Mr. Karpilovski holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from the Holon Institute of Technology and a Master of Business Administration from The Open University of Israel. Follow him on Twitter.

Turn Your Cloud into a Mega-Cloud

Cloud computing was developed specifically to overcome issues of localization and limitations of power and physical space. Yet many data center facilities are in danger of running out of power, cooling, or physical space.

Mellanox offers an alternative and cost-efficient solution. Mellanox’s new MetroX® long-haul switch system makes it possible to move from the paradigm of multiple, disconnected data centers to a single multi-point meshed mega-cloud. In other words, remote data center sites can now be localized through long-haul connectivity, providing benefits such as faster compute, higher volume data transfer, and improved business continuity. MetroX provides the ability for more applications and more cloud users, leading to faster product development, quicker backup, and more immediate disaster recovery.

The more physical data centers you join using MetroX, the more you scale your company’s cloud into a mega-cloud. You can continue to scale your cloud by adding data centers at opportune moments and places, where real estate is inexpensive and power is at its lowest rates, without concern for distance from existing data centers and without fear that there will be a degradation of performance.

Blog MegaCloudBAandA

Moreover, you can take multiple distinct clouds, whether private or public, and use MetroX to combine them into a single mega-cloud.  This enables you to scale your cloud offering without adding significant infrastructure, and it enables your cloud users to access more applications and to conduct more wide-ranging research while maintaining the same level of performance.

Continue reading

CloudNFV Proof-of-Concept Approved by ETSI ISG

Mellanox is a CloudNFV integration partner providing ConnectX-3 and ConnectX-3 PRO 10/40GbE NIC on Dell Servers

The CloudNFV team will be starting PoC execution in mid-January, reporting on our results beginning of February, and contributing four major documents to the ISG’s process through the first half of 2014.” said Tom Nolle, President of CIMI Corporation, Chief Architect of CloudNFV in his recent related blog.and enabling active high performance data center.  Telefonica and Sprint have agreed to sponsor

tomnolle_new

the CloudNFV PoC.

We’re already planning additional PoCs, some focusing on specific areas and developed by our members and some advancing the boundaries of NFV into the public and private cloud and into the world of pan-provider services and global telecommunications.

Mellanox server and storage interconnect enable telecom data plane virtual network functions with near bare metal server performance in OpenStack Cloud environment through integration to NFV Orchestration and SDN platforms.

Read more:   The CloudNFV Proof-of-Concept Was Approved by the ETSI ISG!

eran bello
Author: As a Director of Business Development at Mellanox, Eran Bello handles the business, solutions and product development and strategy for the growing Telecom and Security markets. Prior to joining Mellanox, Eran was Director of Sales and Business Development at Anobit Technologies where he was responsible for the development of the ecosystem for Anobit new Enterprise SSD business as well as portfolio introduction and business engagements with key Server OEMs, Storage Solution providers and mega datacenters. Earlier on Eran was VP of Marketing and Sales for North and Central America at Runcom Technologies, the first company to deliver Mobile WiMAX/4G End to End solution and was a member of the WiMAX/4G Forum.

Mellanox-Based Clouds: A Key Ingredient for Your Start-up Success

Mellanox’s Ethernet and InfiniBand interconnects enable and enhance world-leading cloud infrastructures around the globe. Utilizing Mellanox’s fast server and storage interconnect solutions, these cloud vendors maximized their cloud efficiency and reduced their cost-per-application.

 

Mellanox is now working with a variety of incubators, accelerators, co-working spaces and venture capitalists to introduce these cloud vendors that are based on Mellanox interconnect cloud solution to new evolving startup companies.   These new companies can enjoy best performance with the added benefit of reduced cost, as they advance application development.  In this post, we will discuss the advantages of using Mellanox based clouds.

 

RDMA (Remote Direct Memory Access) is a critical element in building the most scalable and cost-effective cloud environments and to achieve the highest return-on-investment.  For example, Microsoft Azure’s InfiniBand based cloud, as listed on the world’s top performance capable systems (TOP500), demonstrated 33% lower application cost compared to other clouds on the same list.

 

Mellanox’s InfiniBand and RoCE (RDMA over Converged Ethernet) cloud solutions deliver world-leading Ethernet based interconnect density, compute and storage.  Mellanox’s Virtual Protocol Interconnect (VPI) technology incorporates both InfiniBand and Ethernet into the same solution to provide interconnect flexibility for cloud providers.

  • Higher Performance
    • 56Gb/s per port with RDMA
    • 2us for VM to VM connectivity
    • 3.5x faster VM migration
    • 6x faster storage access
  • Cost Effective Storage
    • Higher storage density with RDMA
    • Utilization of existing disk bays
  • Higher Infrastructure Efficiency
    • Support more VMs per server
    • Offload hypervisor CPU
    • Unlimited scalability
    • I/O consolidation (one wire)

 

Accelerating Cloud Performance
Accelerating Cloud Performance

 


 

Don’t waste resources worried about bringing up dedicated cloud infrastructures. Instead, keep your developers focused on developing applications that are strategic to your business. By choosing a RDMA-based cloud from one of our partners, you can be rest assured that you will have the most efficient, scalable, and cost-effective cloud platform available.

 

Learn more, click here:  Mellanox Based Clouds

eli karpilovski
Author: Eli Karpilovski manages the Cloud Market Development at Mellanox Technologies. In addition, Mr. Karpilovski serves as the Cloud Advisory Council Chairman. Mr. Karpilovski served as product manager for the HCA Software division at Mellanox Technologies. Mr. Karpilovski holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from the Holon Institute of Technology and a Master of Business Administration from The Open University of Israel.

Mellanox joins the CloudNFV Initiative

Today, we are pleased to announce that Mellanox has joined the CloudNFV initiative as an Integration Partner to contribute to the success of the effort and eco-system.  CloudNFV is a collaboration between its memberCloudNFV companies with a focus to prove the value of NFV.  The organization currently include the following member companies:  6WIND, CIMI, Dell, EnterpriseWeb, Overture, Qosmos, MetaSwitch and Mellanox.

“I am excited to welcome Mellanox into CloudNFV as an Integration Partner.  NFV and the cloud demand an efficient data center network and storage structure, and Mellanox is a global leader in both areas with high-availability and high-performance fabric connectivity that’s a perfect match to NFV implementations.  We’re already working to integrate Mellanox into our lab at Dell’s facilities in California, and they’ll be a key element in our public demonstration of high-performance NFV-based UCC services in December.”  Tom Nolle, President of CIMI Corporation, Chief Architect of CloudNFV

Cloud Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) is an ISG activity within ETSI, dedicated to creating an architecture to host network features and functions on general-purpose servers instead of on purpose-built network appliances or devices.  CloudNFV is a platform to test the integration of Cloud computing, SDN, NFV for Carrier Telecom Cloud.   Read more about this Initiative here.

“We are excited to join and collaborate with the CloudNFV team and contribute to this important initiative. We are integrating Mellanox’s ConnectX-3 PRO 10/40/56Gbps InfiniBand and Ethernet high performance, low latency NIC with the CloudNFV platform to enable data plane network functions running as virtual machines with near bare metal performance in an OpenStack environment through Mellanox Software Define Networking solutions” Eran Bello, Director of Business Development, Mellanox.

To find more information about Mellanox Telecom NFV solutions and CloudNV (http://www.cloudnfv.com) or to schedule a meeting during SDN & OpenFlow World Congress in Bad Homburg, Frankfurt, 15-18 October 2013 please contact Eran Bello at eranb@mellanox.com

 

eran bello
Author: As a Director of Business Development at Mellanox, Eran Bello handles the business, solutions and product development and strategy for the growing Telecom and Security markets. Prior to joining Mellanox, Eran was Director of Sales and Business Development at Anobit Technologies where he was responsible for the development of the ecosystem for Anobit new Enterprise SSD business as well as portfolio introduction and business engagements with key Server OEMs, Storage Solution providers and mega datacenters. Earlier on Eran was VP of Marketing and Sales for North and Central America at Runcom Technologies, the first company to deliver Mobile WiMAX/4G End to End solution and was a member of the WiMAX/4G Forum.

Accelerating Red Hat’s new OpenStack cloud platform with Mellanox Interconnect

Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform is a new leading Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) open-source solution for building and deploying cloud-enabled workloads. This new cloud platform gives customers the agility to scale and quickly meet customer demands without compromising on availability, security, or performance.

Red Hat built an industry leading certification program for their OpenStack platform. By achieving this technology certification, partners can assure customers that their solutions have been validated with Red Hat OpenStack technology.  Anyone who earns this new certification will be able to show that they can accomplish the following tasks:

•             Install and configure Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform.

•             Manage users, projects, flavors, and rules.

•             Configure and manage images.

•             Add compute nodes.

•             Manage storage using Swift and Cinder.

 

Mellanox is listed in the Red Hat marketplace as a certified Hardware partner for Networking (Neutron) and Block Storage (Cinder) services. This ensures that Mellanox ConnectX-3 hardware was tested, certified, and now supported with Red Hat OpenStack technology.

Mellanox Technologies offers seamless integration between its products and Red Hat OpenStack services and provides unique functionality that includes application and storage acceleration, network provisioning, automation, hardware-based security, and isolation. Furthermore, using Mellanox interconnect products allows cloud providers to save significant capital and operational expenses through network and I/O consolidation and by increasing the number of virtual machines (VMs) per server.

With Mellanox ConnectX-3 card and OpenStack plugins, customers will benefit from superior performance and native integration with Neutron:

 

Mellanox OpenStack solution extends the Cinder project by adding iSCSI running over RDMA (iSER). Leveraging RDMA, Mellanox OpenStack delivers 5x better data throughput (for example, increasing from 1GB/s to 5GB/s) and requires up to 80% less CPU utilization.

Eli Blog 092013 Img1

 

Mellanox ConnectX-3 adapters equipped with onboard embedded switch (eSwitch) are capable of performing layer-2 switching for the different VMs running on the server. Using the eSwitch will gain higher performance levels in addition to security and QoS. The eSwitch configuration is transparent to the Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform administrator by using the Mellanox neutron plugin. By implementing a technology called SR-IOV (Single Root IO Virtualization) and running RDMA over eSwitch, we were able to show a dramatic difference (x20) compared to when using para-virtualized vNIC running a TCP stream connectivity.

Eli Blog 092013 Img2

Learn more:

Mellanox and Red Hat OpenStack joint solution - click here

View the Mellanox certificationclick here

eli karpilovski
Author: Eli Karpilovski manages the Cloud Market Development at Mellanox Technologies. In addition, Mr. Karpilovski serves as the Cloud Advisory Council Chairman. Mr. Karpilovski served as product manager for the HCA Software division at Mellanox Technologies. Mr. Karpilovski holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from the Holon Institute of Technology and a Master of Business Administration from The Open University of Israel.

ConnectX-3 Leverages Network Services in SDN Era

Guest blog by: Alon Harel

 

If your job is related to networking, be it a network admin, an R&D engineer, an architect, or any other job involving networks, it is very likely you have heard people around you (or GASP! maybe even heard yourself) express doubts about the proliferation of Software Defined Networking (SDN) and OpenFlow. How many times have you encountered skepticism about this new revolutionary concept of decoupling control and data planes and “re-inventing the wheel”? Many people used to think “this is hype; it will go away like other new technologies did, and it will never replace the traditional network protocols…” Well, if you perceive SDN/OpenFlow only as a replacement for the current network distributed protocol, these doubts may be turn out to be valid. The concept of saying “OpenFlow is here to replace the old strict protocols” is pretty much the message one gets from reading the old white papers regarding OpenFlow. These papers used to describe the primary motivation for moving to OpenFlow as the determination to introduce innovation in the control plane (that is, the ability to test and apply new forwarding schemes in the network).

 

This long preface is the background for the use case we present below. This use case is not about a new forwarding scheme, nor is it about re-implementing protocols; rather, it is a complementary solution for existing traditional networks. It is about adding network services in an agile way, allowing cost-efficient scalability. It is innovative and fresh and, most importantly, it could have not been done prior to the SDN era. Its simplicity and the fact that it relies on some very basic notions of OpenFlow can only spark the imagination about what can be done further using the SDN toolbox.

 

RADWARE’s security appliance, powered by Mellanox’s OpenFlow-enabled ConnectX®-3 adapter, brings a new value proposition to the network appliance market, demonstrating the power of SDN by enabling the addition of network services in a most efficient and scalable way.

 

Security and attack mitigation service is applied for pre-defined protected objects (servers) identified by their IP address. Prior to SDN, the security appliance had to be a ‘bump in the wire’ because all traffic destined for the protected objects must traverse through it. This, of course, dictates network physical topology, limited by the appliance’s port bandwidth and imposing high complexity when scale comes into play.

 

RADWARE’s DefenseFlow software is capable of identifying abnormal network behavior by monitoring the amount of bytes and packets of specific flows destined for the protected objects. The monitoring is performed by installing specific flows in the forwarding hardware only for the sake of counting the amount of data traversing it. Flow configuration and counter information is retrieved via standard OpenFlow primitives. The naïve approach would be to use the OpenFlow switches to accommodate the flows (counters); however, the limited resource capacity of commodity switches (mainly TCAM, which is the prime resource for OpenFlow) rules out this option. (Note that a switch may be the data path for hundreds or thousands of VMs, each with several monitored flows). Thus, the viability of the solution must come from somewhere else. Enter Mellanox’s OpenFlow-enabled ConnectX-3 SR-IOV adapter.

 

ConnectX-3 incorporates an embedded switch (or eSwitch) enabling VM communication to enjoy bare metal performance. The HCA driver includes OpenFlow agent software, based on the Indigo-2 open source project, which enables the eSwitch to be controlled using standard OpenFlow protocol.

 

Installing the flows (counters) on the edge switch (eSwitch) makes a lot of sense. First, each eSwitch is responsible only for a relatively small amount of protected objects (only those servers running on a specific host), therefore the scale obstacle becomes a non-issue. Moreover, more clever or sophisticated monitoring (for example, event generation when a threshold is crossed) can easily be added, offloading the monitoring application (DefenseFlow in this case).

 

You might think, “What’s new about that? We already have Open vSwitch (OVS) on the server which is OpenFlow capable.” Well, when performance is the name of the game, OVS is out and SR-IOV technology is in. While in SR-IOV mode, VM communication is performed by interfacing the hardware, directly bypassing any virtual switch processing software; therefore, in this mode OVS’s OpenFlow capabilities cannot be used (as it is not part of the data path).

 

Let’s take a look at this practically by describing the setup and operation of the joint solution. The setup is based on standard servers equipped with Mellanox’s ConnectX-3 adapter and OpenFlow-enabled switch and with RADWARE’s DefensePro appliance and DefenseFlow software, which interacts with the Floodlight OpenFlow controller.

SDN bog iamge1.png

Figure 1 – Setup

 

Here’s a description of the joint solution operation, as depicted in Figure 2:

  • DefenseFlow installs the relevant flows on each ConnectX-3 adapter.
  • The security appliance does not participate in the normal data path.
  • ConnectX-3 counts traffic matching the installed flows.
  • Flow counters are retrieved from ConnectX-3.
  • Once an attack is identified, only relevant traffic is diverted to the security appliance (where it is cleared of malicious flows and inserted back toward its destination).

 

 

SDN bog iamge2.png

Figure 2 -Joint Solution

 

I would argue that every skeptic seeing this example use case and the added value it brings to existing network environments using these very basic OpenFlow knobs, would have to reconsider his SDN doubts…

Mellanox Joins the Network Intelligence Alliance

We are happy to join the Network Intelligence Alliance, an industry organization created for collaboration among the Network Economy’s technology providers. Through our participation in the Alliance, Mellanox will help develop and market innovative solutions that further improve networking solutions for Enterprise, Cloud providers and Telecom Operators.

 

Using Mellanox’s low-latency, CPU efficient 10/40GbE NICs and switches, customers can deploy an embedded virtual switch (eSwitch) to run virtual machine traffic with bare-metal performance, provide hardened security and QoS, all with simpler management through Software Defined Networking (SDN) and OpenFlow APIs. The hardware-based security and isolation features in our 10/40GbE solutions can enable wider adoption of multi-tenant clouds while maintaining user service level agreements (SLA). In addition, utilizing SR-IOV to bypass the Hypervisor, customers will gain more VMs when virtualizing Network Functions on their cloud and data center server and storage infrastructure deployments.

 

In a world that now depends and runs on networks—accurate visibility and precise tracking of data crossing networks have become crucial to the availability, performance and security of applications and services. The growing complexity of IP transactions, the explosion of mobile applications, and the mainstream adoption of cloud computing surpass the capabilities of conventional tools to improve how networks operate, expand services, and cope with cybersecurity.  Just like Business Intelligence solutions emerged to unlock information hidden in the enterprise, Network Intelligence technology is an emerging category of technology to reveal the critical details of the data locked inside network traffic and transactions.
Mellanox is excited to be a part of this great group and we are looking forward to collaborating with other members.

http://www.mellanox.com/

Mellanox encourages you to join our community and follow us on; LinkedIn, Mellanox Blog, Twitter, YouTube, Mellanox Community

How did Windows Azure achieved performance of 90.2 percent efficiency

Written By: Eli Karpilovski, Manager, Cloud Market Development

 

Windows Azure, one of the largest public cloud providers in the world today, recently ran a system performance benchmark, called LINPACK, to demonstrate the performance capabilities of its ‘Big Compute’ hardware. Windows Azure submitted the results and was certified as one of the world’s largest supercomputers on the TOP500.

 

Results were super impressive – 151.3 TFlops on 8,065 cores with 90.2 percent efficiency, 33% higher efficiency versus other major 10GbE cloud providers that ran the same benchmark!

 

What is their secret? 40Gb/s InfiniBand network with RDMA – the Mellanox way.

 

Learn more about it >>  (http://blogs.msdn.com/b/windowsazure/archive/2012/11/13/windows-azure-benchmarks-show-top-performance-for-big-compute.aspx)

 

Join the Mellanox Cloud Community: http://community.mellanox.com/groups/cloud

Why Atlantic.Net Chose Mellanox

Atlantic.Net is a global cloud hosting provider that offers Atlantic.Net can now offer customers more robust cloud hosting services through a reliable, adaptable infrastructure, all at a lower cost in comparison to traditional interconnect solutions.

Why Atlantic.Net Chose Mellanox

  • Price and Cost Advantage

Expensive hardware, overhead costs while scaling, as well as administrative costs can be avoided with Mellanox’s interconnect technologies and thereby reduce costs 32% per application.

  • Lower Latency and Faster Storage Access:

By utilizing the iSCSI RDMA Protocol (iSER) implemented in KVM servers over a single converged InfiniBand interconnect adapter, iSER delivers lower latency and is less complex, resulting in lower costs to the user.

  • Consolidate I/O Transparently

LAN and SAN connectivity for VMs on KVM and Atlantic.Net’s management environment is tightly integrated; allowing Atlantic.Net to transparently consolidate LAN, SAN, live migrations and other traffic.

The Bottom Line

By deploying Mellanox’s InfiniBand solution, Atlantic.Net can support high volume and high-performance requirements– on-demand – and offer a service that scales as customers’ needs change and grow. Having built a high performance, reliable and redundant storage infrastructure using off-the-shelf commodity hardware, Atlantic.Net was able to avoid purchasing expensive Fibre Channel storage arrays, saving significant capital expenses per storage system.

 

http://youtu.be/frTWWwjacyc