Big Switch Networks Extends Software Defined Networking Controller to OpenStack Developers

IT enterprises can now manage multi-tenant OpenStack networks through physical and virtual OpenFlow-enabled network devices

PALO ALTO, CA – July 10, 2012 – Marking the next step in the evolution of the industry’s first open-standards based approach to software-enabled next-generation networks, Big Switch Networks today announced OpenStack developers can now plug-in to the company’s open source OpenFlow Controller, Floodlight, for programmable networking in multi-tenant cloud and virtualized environments. Continuing on the movement towards an open software defined networking (SDN) architecture, the new plugin allows OpenStack users to create and manage virtual networks using both hypervisor-based and physical OpenFlow switches controlled by Floodlight.

“Big Switch is at the forefront of delivering an open solution for next-generation networking, and today we are taking the next step in fulfilling that vision,” said Kyle Forster, co-founder of Big Switch Networks, the industry leader in software defined networking. “We’ve experienced significant market traction and downloads as OpenFlow developers have embraced Floodlight, and with our new OpenStack support, we look forward to bringing the power of programmable networks to a broader cloud community.”

“The need for an open cloud is helping fuel adoption and OpenStack’s success in the industry,” said Kyle MacDonald, VP of cloud at Canonical. “Open SDN is the future of networking, and we believe Big Switch’s OpenStack support will make it easier for developers from both the OpenStack and SDN communities to collaborate.”

With today’s announcement, developers now have the programmability and vendor independence of OpenFlow on top of the benefits of cloud automation from OpenStack. Floodlight’s OpenStack support relies on Quantum, a network connectivity as a service between interface devices (e.g. vNICs) managed by other OpenStack services. In addition to support for hypervisor-based switches like Open vSwitch, Floodlight brings support for a growing ecosystem of physical OpenFlow switches. Additionally, Floodlight offers an open API platform on which OpenStack-specific SDN applications can be created. Unlike other OpenStack-ready technology currently available, this plugin provides SDN innovators a bridge to OpenStack through an open source controller which works with vSwitched as well as OpenFlow switches on the market.

“Floodlight is an open, production-ready OpenFlow controller, with quite a few ready-made networking services that the OpenStack community can leverage and innovate upon,” said Soheil Hassas Yeganeh, PhD student at the University of Toronto working on SDN and network virtualization.

Released this past January, Floodlight is an Apache-licensed open source OpenFlow controller. OpenFlow controllers are central components of SDN as they capture control information from OpenFlow-enabled switches to centrally manage networks. Floodlight serves the needs of academics, offers a powerful platform to commercial developers to build SDN network services and helps network administrators experience OpenFlow first hand.

There has been growing momentum around SDN, with major infrastructure vendors bringing OpenFlow switches to market, and the OpenStack and Floodlight ecosystems are keeping up pace with technological innovation. Floodlight is now downloaded more than 1200 times per month by a development community spanning four continents, and the OpenStack community includes over 180 companies and over 3000 developers. Floodlight and its corresponding OpenStack plugin are available on the Floodlight website at

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Webinar – July 11, 2012 at 8:30am PT
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About Big Switch Networks
Big Switch Networks was founded in 2010 to bring cloud innovation to enterprise networks using OpenFlow-based Software-Defined Networking. Big Switch Networks is headquartered in Palo Alto, California. For more information, visit:


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