NetLogic Microsystems Inc. (NASDAQ:NETL), a provider of semiconductor products for next-generation Internet networks, and EZchip Semiconductor Ltd. (NASDAQ:EZCH), maker of Ethernet network processors, are collaborating to deliver high-performance, merchant, packet-processing systems for IPv6-ready, Terabit-class systems.
The companies are optimizing and implementing exclusive operational modes in both EZchip’s NP-4 100Gbps network processor (NPU) and NetLogic Microsystems’ NL11k knowledge-based processor, enabling customers to achieve enhanced performance and functionality when using both processors together. The companies also are collaborating to enhance the performance optimizations and tight coupling between EZchip’s next-generation NP-5 200Gbps NPU and NetLogic Microsystems’ next generation of knowledge-based processors at the 28-nm node.
The increasing demand for network bandwidth and smarter networks is driving OEMs to look for systems that offer faster and more extensive packet processing. Additionally, the depletion of IPv4 addresses is forcing the migration to IPv6 Internet addresses, which require 5x the processing capability compared to IPv4 packets. Moreover, the growing requirement for deep-packet inspection throughout the network is driving a need for knowledge-based processors with significantly higher performance and database capacity.
“We are excited to expand upon our long-standing collaboration with EZchip on multiple generations of our respective best-in-class products,” says Chris O’Reilly, vice president of marketing at NetLogic Microsystems. “With each successive generation, we have seen an increase in the content of EZchip’s network processors, as well as our knowledge-based processors per line card offering increasing levels of performance and functionality. This trend bodes well for both our companies as customers are expected to continue to demand higher performance, more intelligence, and greater functionality.”
NetLogic Microsystems offers a portfolio of high-performance, knowledge-based processors optimized for IPv6 processing. The NL11k processor family’s architecture boasts 128 massively parallel, knowledge-based processing engines and the Sahasra Algorithmic Engine. This combination of technologies enables the NL11k processor to deliver 1.6 billion decisions per second (BDPS) of IPv6 classification, QoS, and forwarding processing, all performed with a high level of parallelism compared to any other search processing technology while consuming less power than alternative solutions, says a spokesperson.
The NL11k knowledge-based processor features a high-speed serial interface that delivers 225 Gbps of raw chip-to-chip interconnect bandwidth, representing an increase in I/O bandwidth-per-pin and enabling wider IPv6 keys to be processed at the same search rate as narrower IPv4 keys. By being manufactured in the advanced 40-nm process node, the NL11k processor enables 3x higher knowledge database density over competing 65-nm solutions.
EZchip’s NP-4 enables the building of high-density switch/router line cards that feature 200-400 Gigabit-per-second (Gbps) throughput and twenty to forty 10-Gigabit ports per line card. NP-4 highlights include: 100-Gbps programmable packet processing, integrated traffic management, Operations, Administration, and Management (OAM) processing offload, Synchronous Ethernet and IEEE1588v2 offload, IP reassembly, integrated serial ports with support for 1, 10, 40, and 100 Gigabit Ethernet, and use of DDR3 DRAM memory chips for minimizing power and cost. The NP-4 is software compatible with EZchip’s 200-Gigabit NP-5.
This 100G joint system from NetLogic Microsystems and EZchip, now available, is well suited to switch and router designs being upgraded to handle the new paradigm of native IPv6 processing and the bandwidth requirements of advanced mobile infrastructure given the explosion of video and data traffic over smartphones and tablets.
To learn more about equipment design and EZchip, visit the Lightwave Buyers Guide.