If you following information technology you’ve probably heard the term Software-defined Networking in conversation, and the explanations of what it is are often lacking.
Here’s a simple summary.
- Throughout the history of networking we’ve managed routing and switching by logging into the routers and switches themselves, issuing commands, and getting our desired outcomes.
- This doesn’t scale, since large organizations have hundreds, thousands, or tens of thousands of pieces of networking gear.
- Software-defined Networking addresses this by abstracting the control of networking (the control plane) from the execution of networking (the data plane).
In short, networking hardware is joined into a software fabric, we issue commands to the centralized software, and the software then makes the config changes to direct traffic accordingly.
- Here is the Wikipedia entry for SDR