The networking and telecommunications industries have begun to incorporate virtualization technology in ways similar to data centers. Adopting principles outlined by network functions virtualization (NFV), network functions are being consolidated onto standard, high-volume servers, switches, and storage in order to increase flexibility, equipment utilization, and operating efficiencies. Since networks functions are easily co-located on the same hardware platforms, combining services together, as needed for service chaining, is more straightforward.
Today, network functions are deployed in a multitude of ways and in various locations, making service chaining more complex and difficult. For instance, sharing information generated by L4-L7 deep packet inspection (DPI) may require manual intervention to properly configure network functions, which creates inefficiencies in the management of cloud-based enterprise infrastructure.
Qosmos DPI technology, running on hypervisor-hosted platforms based on Intel® Xeon® processors, allows DPI functions to be performed once and used many times for various services like load balancing, traffic steering, and security functions. To facilitate sharing, application-ID and metadata can be placed either in packet headers (i.e., a proposed IETF contribution is named NSH for Network Service Header), or in flow tables being accessible through specific APIs or through initiatives using tagging/labeling, specific tunneling. Since DPI is not run repeatedly, chained services using DPI run more efficiently, enabling higher cost/performance ratios for the virtual networking applications and allowing more resources for the tenant applications, like Apache servers.