Wind River boosts Intel's communications story
Chip giant's real time Linux unit promises performance boost and traffic intelligence for Intel comms processors
Published: 21 February, 2013
Real time Linux player Wind River is a hugely strategic member of the Intel family, since being acquired in 2011. Increasingly, the chip giant is building a full platform of middleware and embedded software around its processors to handle key functions like security and M2M device management, right down at silicon level. Controlling operating system and real time smarts is an important way to enhance the performance of Intel's platforms in demanding environments like network processors.
While Wind River continues to work with the ARM platform as well, its developments will increasingly be used primarily to boost its parent's offerings. The latest breakthroughs focus on fashionable areas of carrier concern - speeding up packet processing, while boosting the intelligence throughout the network in order to allocate resources efficiently and use complex analytics to understand user traffic patterns.
Wind River says its patent pending Intelligent Socket Layer technology can deliver up to a threefold performance boost, compared to a native Linux network stack, without any application modification; while a new data plane software engine, Flow Analysis Engine, provides real time visibility into massive network traffic, to enable more intelligent management of that traffic.
These features will be incorporated in the Wind River Intelligent Network Platform, which targets LTE systems, firewalls and other segments where large scale packet analysis is required. The platform is complemented by the firm's Intelligent Device Platform, unveiled last fall, which provides a Linux development environment for M2M applications. The Intelligent Socket Layer will be part of Wind River's Application Acceleration Engine.
The Flow Analysis Engine is a set of software libraries and tools that enable deep visibility into traffic flows at Layers 4 to 7, including real time packet classification and protocol and application identification. Carriers can use this data accelerate traffic, manage bandwidth more flexibly, assign different levels of QoS to different users or applications, or guard against malware.
Along with the Application Acceleration Engine and Wind River's existing Content Inspection Engine, the new element forms a key part of the broader Intelligent Network Platform, which is optimized for Intel's communication infrastructure and intgrated with the the giant's Data Plane Development Kit.
"This is certainly a major step in delivering a comprehensive and yet high performance packet processing solution as new use cases for deep packet inspection gain stronger footing in the network domain," said Keate Despain, general manager of the platforms group at Radisys, a Wind River partner which will integrate the Intelligent Network Platform with its own network appliance solutions."