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The HPE Disaggregated Networking Solution: Cumulus Linux for HPE M-series ONIE Switch Family


Enjoy the freedom of purchasing switch hardware and operating system separately, based on enterprise needs. HPE gives you that option with Cumulus Linux as its disaggregated NOS offering for HPE M-series ONIE switches.

Cumulus Linux_Blog_shutterstock_1496655965.jpgDon’t let legacy networks become a barrier to the success of your business

When it comes to data center networks, traditional solutions are being re-imagined to keep up with the pace of change and the agility required to serve customers better, faster and cheaper. It is important to remember that not all systems were designed for today’s applications, with private and hybrid cloud models in mind. Network operations require a significant rethink to successfully adapt to future technologies and process demands such as containers, DevOps, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud, and software-defined infrastructure.

What is disaggregated networking?

Disaggregated Networking enables on-demand creation of autonomous networking infrastructure units from a pool of individual hardware and software resources. This marks the trend of moving from proprietary, closed hardware and software sourced from a single vendor, toward totally decoupled, disaggregated components which are combined to form a complete switching and routing device. The result is a unique, bespoke product that is perfectly tailored for each customer’s requirements.




The benefits of this approach include:

  • Flexibility and control of architecture
  • Lower hardware and operations costs
  • Simplification and scale
  • Agility
  • Ease of management

Partnering to provide a complete disaggregated networking solution

HPE M-series partnered with Cumulus Networks to provide a complete disaggregated networking solution, offering customers the combination of HPE M-series ONIE switches, with Cumulus Linux network operating system, backed by trusted HPE Pointnext support.

The solution was developed to provide networking software that can design, run, and operate modern data centers that are open, resilient, agile, and scalable.  In addition, this networking software allows you to build and efficiently operate your network like a large data center, unlocking the power and flexibility of vertical network stacks. It delivers a modern, future-proof network architecture with cutting-edge innovation in automation, Ethernet VPN (EVPN), and operations.

Unprecedented network visibility

Cumulus also offers an operational management tool, Cumulus NetQ that provides unprecedented network visibility of the entire fabric in real-time, giving actionable insights and operational intelligence into the health of the data center network.Disaggragated2.png


Cumulus Linux is built on top of open source components to leverage disaggregation.  All of the intelligence is built into the software, and runs on a cost effective hardware platform like the HPE M-series switch family. The NOS applies some of the same philosophical tenets as the largest web-scale operators without needing to be the size and scale of such companies. Traits include intelligence in software; open and modular design; scalable, efficient, generic infrastructure; converged operational teams; and, integrated tool chains. It also leverages automation and monitoring wherever possible to minimize manual intervention with real-time visibility into the entire fabric.

A strategic business partner

Disaggregated networking is all about enabling network operations to become a strategic partner to the business. Enterprises have started to consider it to be a valuable investment for accelerating provisioning times, improving IT utilization, and simplifying overall IT operations. HPE also recognizes its key benefits as competitive differentiators for our customers and believes this offering is a step forward in supporting disaggregated infrastructure.

Learn more about storage networking here.

Sukhmani Kahlon_HPE.jpg

Meet Around the Storage Block blogger Sukhmani Kahlon, Product Management, HPE Storage Networking. Sukhmani is an Associate Product Manager at HPE’s storage business group, managing software solutions for storage network orchestration.


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