Network infrastructures are shifting from physical systems to virtual functions, and this requires a new class of network appliance that provides high-performance processing, balanced input/output (I/O) and hardware or software acceleration. Software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) are changing the way networks and services are provisioned. This new virtualized infrastructure requires a combination of standard server technology and modular systems that can be configured to support line-rate performance with network interfaces up to 100 Gbit/s. This paper explores the requirements for delivering line-speed performance in a virtual infrastructure environment and reviews an exciting solution to this challenge.
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