A new class of networking platform has emerged that combines the cost effectiveness of carrier-grade servers with the flexibility and manageability of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) platforms such as ATCA. The network appliance platform has been developed by taking the standard carrier-grade server and using the extensive input/output (I/O) interfaces on the latest processors from Intel and other vendors to provide high performance and flexible networking interface and acceleration options. Several vendors have also increased availability using enhanced BIOS features and IPMI to control redundant subsystems. These network appliance platforms provide significant benefits in many applications, including software-defined networking (SDN)/network functions virtualization (NFV) and stand-alone network appliances.
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