Midokura Embraces Kubernetes Container Networking

Today, software Defined Networking (SDN) firm Midokura announces a new update to its enterprise platform to provide multi-cloud connectivity and some container networking support as well.

Midokura CTO Pino de Candia explained that the new Midokura Enterprise MidoNet (MEM) 5.2 update is based on Open Source MidoNet 5.0. Midokura first open-sourced its MidoNet platform in November 2014 at the OpenStack Summit in Paris.

“There is no difference in the core functionality between open source MidoNet and MEM,” de Candia told Enterprise Networking Planet. “MEM 5.2 is the commercial, hardened release of MidoNet, includes management via MidoNet Manager, analytics via MEM Insights with Fabric Topology, 24/7 enterprise-class support.”

Among the big feature enhancements in MEM 5.2 is multi-cloud connectivity with router peering, a feature enabled in part by MidoNet’s VXLAN tunneling capabilities. MidoNet has supported both VXLAN and GRE protocols as an overlay since Midokura first got started. With the enhanced capabilities in the new release, multiple sites in two different geographic locations can be connected with the same fabric.

“We are extending Layer 2 over Layer 3 networking,” de Candia explained. “We are extending the same VNI [VXLAN Network ID] across multiple sites and we use the gateways to advertise the route.”

In some cases, having an extended, geographically disparate networking fabric can introduce network latency, but that’s not necessarily the case with MidoNet. De Candia noted that MidoNet does not introduce any overhead or add latency.

While Midokura has a strong association with cloud and the OpenStack platform in particular, the growing popularity of containers hasn’t gone unnoticed by Midokura either. The prior MEM 5.0 milestone provided users with an overlay driver for Docker by way of the libnetwork interface. With the new MEM 5.2 update, Midokura is now adding support for Kubernetes.

“Kubernetes is the second container orchestration engine [COE] MidoNet integration,” De Candia said. “We will be adding other COE as customer demands.”

Looking forward, Midokura is working on further expanding MEM and MidoNet for the next generation of networking challenges, including the Internet of Things (IoT) and IPv6. De Candia said that networking is an enabler for IoT, and each IoT device has its own UUID and an IP address.

“IP exhaustion can be a reality,” De Candia said. “We will support 6 to 4 NAT [a mechanism for IPv6 migration] in the interim and eventually, you’ll see full blown IPv6 support.”

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Enterprise Networking Planet and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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