Data center interconnect | Cumulus Networks

Data center interconnect

Today’s challenges for service providers, enterprises and telco's

The demand and the bandwidth for cloud solutions and Internet services is becoming a more tangible challenge every day. Data center and telecommunication operators need scalable, cost-effective, long-haul interconnect solutions to support rising global internet usage and bandwidth-intensive applications like video, VR, scientific research and machine learning. Traditionally, optical and networking vendors have sold these two services separately, with hardware and software bundled together in those separate boxes. Yet these monolithic, proprietary and cost-prohibitive offerings have limited delivery of innovative services to market. The current proprietary solutions are extremely expensive, inflexible and difficult to scale. Additionally, there is a major emphasis on how to efficiently deploy fiber both within and between urban and rural areas.

The solution — optical disaggregation

The key to providing efficient bandwidth and cloud services across the globe is by creating open and unbundled networking solutions. Popular bandwidth-intensive applications are causing operators to search for scalable, inexpensive, backhaul infrastructure solutions to support their customers' needs for high-performing wireless connectivity. The way to drive innovation and cost-efficiency in this space is by breaking apart the hardware and software components of the data center network stack to open up more flexibility. Disaggregation in optical networking allows operators to be much more flexible than they were with monolithic solutions. Openness drives more collaboration and innovation across all aspects of the network. With disaggregation, cloud infrastructure providers and enterprises can now build a network utilizing the advanced capabilities of routing, switching and coherent optical transport.

Voyager: open hardware and software for DCI

To address these challenges, Cumulus Networks, the leader in web-scale networking for the digital era, is collaborating with the Telecom Infra Project (TIP) community on Voyager, a project developed by Facebook that is the industry’s first open optical transponder and routing platform. Voyager offers a data center interconnect solution that unifies IP and optical, making it flexible, simple and cost-effective. Because Voyager is disaggregated, you can purchase the white-box hardware that fits your budget, rather than being locked-in to proprietary options, saving you thousands. Voyager combines the speed and long distance connectivity of DWDM optics with IP packet technologies for Layer 2 and Layer 3 networking protocols and features. That means you can leverage all the benefits of open networking in the DCI space. You can also easily scale to your business's current and future needs, since Voyager includes DWDM transponders with 100G/200Gbps speeds over optical transmissions.  Through increased operational efficiency via Cumulus Linux, and the lowered capital costs via disaggregation, Voyager will ensure faster time to market and lower the barrier of entry for new digital services and technologies for organizations at any size.  

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Data center interconnect partners


"We've played an intrinsic role in the development of the Voyager platform since day one. We're continuously working with our partners to evolve the solution to meet the specific networking needs of multiple service providers and enterprises. What Cumulus Networks is announcing today is the latest step on this journey, and we're excited to be helping roll it out."

Niall Robinson, VP of global business development, ADVA


“We are excited to have so much bandwidth potential in such a compact form factor, coupled with the capabilities of Cumulus Linux. We anticipate significant growth in research traffic, and our partnerships with Cumulus and ADVA, along with our participation in TIP, will help us unlock the potential of our network to handle those demands.”

Bill Owens, CTO of NYSERNet


"We're interested in finding ways to drive down the cost per bit across our backbone. In working with our colleagues at the New York State Education and Research Network (NYSERNet), we see promise in disaggregated solutions like Voyager to help us get there in a flexible and scalable way."

John Moore, AVP for Research and Infrastructure Strategy, Internet2