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Cumulus Networks Extends Data Center Networking Software to the Campus

Cumulus builds on Cumulus Linux and NetQ to deliver innovation to campus networking.

Lynn Haber

October 16, 2019

3 Min Read
Data Center Network
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Cumulus Networks, the open, scalable networking OS vendor, on Wednesday announced that its open networking software for the data center – Cumulus Linux, a network OS, and NetQ, a network operations tool set – is now available for the campus network. NetQ 2.0 was announced in April. 

This latest innovation from Cumulus Networks targets organizations looking to extend the benefits of open and disaggregated networking from their data centers to their campus networks, such as next-generation retail stores or remote branch offices. 

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Cumulus Networks’ Partho Mishra

“Several years ago, a few of these next-gen companies asked us to provide the building blocks that they needed in order for them to take the architecture and the way of deploying switches in the data center and make it work for the campus,” Partho Mishra, president and chief product officer at Cumulus, told Channel Futures. “The driving force behind it was to apply the same principles of automation and a DevOps-type flow, in which you could bring up switches in an automated manner through scripts, for example.” 

Campus operators are increasingly seeking to leverage the benefits of open, modern and disaggregated networking to remove complexity, simplify operations and modernize their campus networks.

The latest campus innovation from Cumulus builds on the features and benefits of Cumulus Linux and NetQ that are used in the data center. The extension of Cumulus Linux to campus networks include critical features such as 802.1x, an authentication mechanism for devices trying to connect to a LAN or wireless LAN (WLAN), automation, power over ethernet (PoE), 1G supported campus switches with multigig, voice VLAN, L2/L3 switching, multi-chassis link aggregation group (MLAG), and EVPN/VXLAN.

“We’ve been actively working on porting our software to make it work with what is, essentially, a new generation of hardware that’s being built by Dell and others, for these types of switches,” said Mishra.  

A key feature of the Cumulus architecture is that a single operating system is used in both the data center and campus platform, which means that all the ways to control the behavior of the OS, whether manual or automated, are identical. 

The first platform the Cumulus technology will come out on is the Dell EMC PowerSwitch 3248, Mishra said.

Dell is a Cumulus technology partner as are other Lenovo, Mellanox Technologies and Penguin, for a few examples. Cumulus also works with traditional partners on the fulfillment side. 

JR Rivers, Cumulus co-founder and CTO, left the company in June, after almost 10 years, and surfaced as senior principal engineer at Amazon Web Services. In a distinguished career, Rivers also worked at Cisco for about 15 years, and for a short stint at Google.

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About the Author(s)

Lynn Haber

Content Director Lynn Haber follows channel news from partners, vendors, distributors and industry watchers. If I miss some coverage, don’t hesitate to email me and pass it along. Always up for chatting with partners. Say hi if you see me at a conference!

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