Intel Plans to turn Your PC into “Router Bricks”

It believes that clusters of general-purpose computers hardware which is known as Routebricks can be replaced by traditional network router equipment. In fact the chip giant is already aiming to make this come true.

There is much more power lurking in the routers of your home or your office than you can even think of. It might also be capable of the tricks that are powerful and also such that a multihundred dollar enterprise router can already do. Then why can you get them in your houses. This is because of the firmware which is built in to your router. The demand is not big enough for routers with fancy tricks for a simple home or small-office device. Also, if the capabilities were added to those routers, then the router makers are likely to see a big upsurge in support calls of technology. In fact, so much of the capabilities of the hardware go untapped.

According to Gianluca Iannaccone who is an Intel researcher, Routebricks will probably enable programmers to reprogram or build networks at a faster speed and it can do so with the help of those hardware and software platforms with which they are most comfortable. Routebricks can be defined at their best as a novel network running on clusters of general-purpose PC hardware as said by Iannaccone in an event that was recently held in Silicon Valley. Software-based routers which are modified via a SW upgrade can be build through clustering multiple such servers together. In addition to all this that can be done, high performance of 1+ Tbps – can be achieved by adding more servers to those clusters. Iannaccone also explained that how will Routebricks help in offering a number of other advantages. These include advantages such as lower-cost, higher-volume manufacturing, supply-support which is widely spread, an advanced management of power options and consolidation of specialized network appliances.

In order to illustrate this of his point, Iannaccone showed TechEye a Routebricks system which comprised of four dual-socket along with Nehalem-EP servers and also eight 10 Gbps Ethernet NICs. The prototype as dubbed RB8/4 is apparently capable of acting as or replacing an 8 port, 10Gbps per port IPv4 router which is fully compliant with RFC 1812. Although RB8/4 is quite an impressive leap forward yet, it remains far from certain if the concept of Routebricks will enjoy wide-scale of an adoption anytime soon. Indeed, David Kanter who is a chip expert said that TechEye that for Intel that is software routing is all about newer ways to use products rather than the R&D which is done for manufacturing or even chip designing. So, like many other software-based approach for example software-defined radios etc., the question that arises is whether the convenience and flexibility for the up gradation of SW instead of ripping out HW is sufficiently valuable or not. It also questions that what will the performance and power efficiency cost.

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