FD.io improves Kubernetes networking in sixth software release

FD.io, one of Linux Foundation’s open source projects, has introduced its 18.01 software release with a focus on improving Kubernetes Networking, Istio and cloud native NFV.

This is FD.io’s sixth software release to date.

By allowing cloud native networking in Kubernetes to run entirely as a high-performance microservice in a Kubernetes pod, FD.io said its pure user space networking technology can improve performance, latency, efficiency, maintainability and innovation.

The 18.01 release includes improvements in Network Address Translation (NAT) and Access Control Lists (ACL) performance as well as methods to improve support for Kubernetes Service and Network Policy APIs. FD.io said these improvements were incorporated into the upcoming 2.0 release of the open source Contiv Kubernetes Network plug-in.

Additionally, FD.io’s userspace Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)/User Datagram Protocol (UDP) Host Stack offers what it said is a faster, more efficient, more scalable transport solution for next-generation cloud-native infrastructure solutions requiring high capacity connections such as Istio. The 18.01 release introduces enhancements to the Host Stack, such as improved congestion control and namespacing for secure separation of different container workloads.

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Offering FD.io’s high-performing data plane services in a container allowed it to be used to construct cloud native virtual network functions (VNFs), enabling NFV to break free of virtual machines and advance to Kubernetes. Version 18.01 includes performance improvements to the memif interconnect. Memif allows two cloud-native container-based VNFs running on the same host to be connected together at the speed of the memory bus. These improvements are leveraged by the open source Ligato framework to enable rapid development of high-performance cloud native VNFs.

FD.io’s move into cloud-native NFV expands on its work providing virtual customer premises equipment (vCPE) dataplane VNFs for use in ONAP’s inaugural Amsterdam Release.

Besides making new releases, FD.io has continued to grow its member community and capabilities. For instance, during the 18.01 release cycle, FD.io improved Arm support. This included common Arm support features upstreamed and several different Arm-based family platform types arriving in the FD.io continuous performance lab to enable continuous integration testing for this release.

Vendor support for FD.io continues to ramp

Huawei, which upgraded its status in FD.io from being a Gold to a Platinum member, has made contributions for the organization’s DMM project (Dual Mode, Multi-protocol, Multi-instance) and plans to make more contributions in the next release. DMM will also provide a transport protocol framework to enable NFV applications to adopt different protocol stacks according to their functional or performance requirements. Also, DMM supports both user and kernel mode protocol stacks.


Cisco and Netgate are also making strides. With the introduction of its Container Platform, Cisco will incorporate FD.io through its use of the Contiv Kubernetes Network plug-in and the Ligato framework. Netgate’s upcoming TNSR and SCLR secure networking platforms are co-evolving with each FD.io software release.