Time just right for SDN, says ONF’s Dan Pitt (video)

4 Jul 2014

Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation

The revolution in software-defined networking (SDN) that is sweeping the data centre and telecoms industries has been inspired by the collision of virtualisation with advanced processing capabilities, said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation (ONF).

Pitt was in Dublin earlier this week to address the Open Tech Ireland gathering on SDN technology, presented in co-operation with the Irish Software Association, Intune Networks, KEMP Technologies, and Sanctum Networks.

Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Verizon, Yahoo! and Deutsche Telecom founded the Open Networking Foundation in 2011 to improve networking through SDN and standardise the OpenFlow protocol and related technologies.

Pitt previously told Siliconrepublic.com that until recently, CIOs and IT managers were at the mercy of networking-equipment vendors who decided the innovation curve for networking technology.

“Networking is the last bastion of the old way of doing things – why is it happening now with SDN? It’s hard to explain except we have critical mass in terms of experience with virtualisation, tremendous advances in distributed computing. We have multi-core processing that has accelerated the ability to do more networking things in processors, we’ve had merchant silicon for switching.

“So the time was just right, it was possible to do, and the frustration level got so high among people who operate and use networks that it just happened,” Pitt said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years