NVIDIA’s plans to acquire Cumulus Networks, a pioneer of using open source for networking, is a sign that open networking is finally ready for a big leap forward.
Open networking has been tightly coupled with software-defined networking (SDN) because the combination promises to make networks significantly more agile, open and easier to customize to specific needs. Cumulus has been working on it for years, and NVIDIA started pushing into it when it acquired Mellanox last week.
The question the Cumulus acquisition raises is “why now”? The concept of open networking has been hotly debated since SDN came into prominence. The concept is sound, and open systems will disrupt the network industry much as it did the compute space. Yet while Linux and open source are wildly successful in the compute industry, open source has yet to take off in networking outside of webscale networks and a handful of large organizations.
Thanks to Zeus Kerravala (see source)