On December 13, 2012, the Packet Pushers published show 128, a video podcast with Big Switch Networks, where Dan Hersey & Andrew Harding discuss & demo the Big Switch controller, and applications that run on the Big Switch controller such as Big Virtual Switch and Big Tap. If you haven’t seen that show yet, you might want to give show 128 a view before listening to this podcast.
What this podcast covers is the Q&A session after the formal recording of show 128 was complete. There were a lot questions from the live audience, and we talked through several of them. These questions & answers are excellent for helping a traditional network engineer better understand the Big Switch controller and how it fits into both current and future network designs.
What We Discuss
- Explain how the Big Switch controller is plumbed to the network and how it is redundant.
- Is there as separate or out-of-band network for control-plane or management traffic?
- Explain the pros and cons of physical vs. virtual switches.
- What version of OpenFlow is supported today, and what’s the roadmap for other versions of OpenFlow?
- What’s the status of standardization for northbound APIs?
- What is a REST API?
- What does software defined networking mean for network security?
- Can a Big Switch network route between L3 domains?
- Is there IPv6 support?
- What are the performance numbers?
- Where is the bottleneck in a Big Switch environment?
- What’s the status of a GUI vs. CLI vs. other means of interacting with the controller?
- Discuss Big Switch’s open approach to SDN as compared to some other vendors.