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Startup SocketPlane Plans to Bring SDN to Clouds That Use Docker Containers

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SocketPlane, a new Software Defined Networking startup, is working on a solution to address the performance, availability and scale requirements of networking in large, container-based cloud deployments.

SocketPlane was given venture funding this week from LightSpeed Ventures to develop its own open-source networking stack.

Given the massive popularity of Docker (as well as its growing support) as a container technology, SocketPlane aims to bring enterprise-grade networking solutions to the ecosystem which are native to Docker and easy for developers and network operators to use.

Many developers have been interested in creating SDN solutions which essentially add a software layer between the network hardware and the software controlling it. This frees many networking functions from physical networking equipment and enables virtual networking solutions that are more adaptive and responsive.

Earlier this year, for instance, Oracle bought carrier SDN startup Corente to help it virtualize enterprise data center LAN and the WAN. And Nokia and Juniper partnered to help bring SDN to the telco market.

Google, Facebook and Twitter have all developed their own SDN capabilities to operate their large-scale, policy-driven networks with a great deal of agility.

SocketPlane hopes to provide similarly DevOps friendly capabilities to any container-based environment using Docker.

“Our approach to SDN is unique compared to most ‘SDN’ vendors” SocketPlane product VP Dave Tucker said in a statement. “Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, we realized early on that there is value in our networking heritage and we are building our solution on top of these solid technologies”

With its first product slated for release in early 2015, SocketPlane hopes to providing engineers robust APIs for network automation, provide elastic network scaling, and provide using network virtualization that simplifies network complexity.

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