Last Updated: June 02, 2020
Netvisor, a bare-metal network hypervisor, is a Network Operating System technology designed to power a variety of network devices from merchant silicon based ODM switches, to high-performance network computing appliances based on commercial off-the shelf server and network components. Netvisor is the first data center operating system, which solves the complex problem of virtualizing the infrastructure at the physical network fabric layer, which is the centerpiece of the data center infrastructure.
- Clustering for simplified management
Netvisor is a distributed operating system based on a peer-to-peer, high-availability cluster architecture (see “Software Defined Fabric Switching” section for more details). This switch cluster technology is the foundation of Pluribus’ Software Defined Fabric, an architecture deeply ingrained in the network operating system, underpinning many of the other value-add network applications described hereafter. Pluribus’ Software Defined Fabric abstracts the complexity of the physical network topology by presenting the fabric-cluster as a single logical switch1 to services, applications and orchestration layers on top of the physical fabric.
Netvisor provides advanced analytics directly in the network fabric (a.k.a. inNetwork Analytics) therefore eliminating the need for separate taps, probes and monitoring fabic.
- Services Virtualization / Application Hosting:
Netvisor brings the ability to run L4-L7 network services inside the network fabric either in high performance containers or in virtual machines (e.g. KVM and Bhyve). Netvisor also allows developers and administrators to run Linux applications in KVM and Bhyve virtual machines right on the network switches.
- Switch Fabric Virtualization
Netvisor brings the ability to virtualize bare metal of an entire cluster of switches, thus providing network and cloud administrators the ability to carve the entire fabric in logical containers with a dedicated set of network and compute resources. You can think of Netvisor as a bare metal (type 1) hypervisor2 for the network fabric, analogous to bare metal hypervisors for the compute infrastructure (such as VMWare ESXi).