Microsoft, well known as the web services giant has built a Linux based data center network operating system for Azure Cloud infrastructure in order to gain more control over its network management software.
Already, all big web service providers like Google, Facebook, Twitter and Amazon are designing their own data center hardware and much of the software that runs on that hardware. By having a custom technology stack that does exactly what they need, companies a gaining a lot from it.
It is evident that integration of radically different software’s running on each type of switch into a cloud wide network management platform is a tough task.
But Microsoft wants to overcome this issue by riding the tide of newer switch hardware innovation.
Microsoft’s Azure Cloud Switch, enables the company to use the same software stack across hardware from multiple switch vendors. The specs were also open sourced through open compute project.
The Azure Cloud switch (ACS) of Microsoft has enabled Microsoft to identify, fix and test software bugs much faster. Additionally, it is also allowing the company to run a lean software stack that doesn’t have unnecessary features for its data center networking needs. Moreover, it allows Microsoft to try new hardware faster and makes it easier to integrate the networking stack with the company’s monitoring and diagnostics system.
Microsoft it its latest media interaction revealed that its Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI)spec, helps in running Azure Cloud Switch across different supplier’s hardware. SAI abstracts data center networking hardware underneath to make it easier for users or vendors to write networking management software without writing it for specific products.