Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK) is a bundle of libraries and controllers that helps us to build applications, thanks to which commodity hardware can achieve higher throughput to software. In short, it is a tool that unlocks faster packet processing. This is achieved by bypassing the kernel space entirely and running everything in the user space. DPDK was designed by Intel to be integrated with the x86 line of processors. Various industries can benefit from DPDK deployment, since it has already become the de facto standard in the NFV and SDN world. It can accelerate virtual applications like next-gen firewalls and applications for Big Data analysis and switching, where Open vSwitch is a prime example of a successful DPDK application. 


Even though DPDK is a powerful tool for data plane processing, not every network interface card supports it. Fortunately, Netcope FPGA-based network adapters come with native support for DPDK and push the limits of DPDK even further by combining Netcope Data Plane (NDP) with DPDK. Since the maximum theoretical throughput of PCI Express is much lower than the maximum theoretical memory throughput of the x86 line of current server processors, NDP was designed to maximize throughput between FPGA-based network interface cards and the host system. In other words, NDP squeezes as much bandwidth as possible from the PCI Express interface, mitigating the bottleneck of PCI Express limited throughput.

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NDP forwards packets through the card and PCI Express in a clever and efficient manner. NDP and DPDK work together as a layered solution. The lower layer (NDP) forwards data through PCI Express interface, and the upper layer provides access to data adhering to the DPDK API and data model. With this solution it is possible to achieve full duplex 100 Gbps throughput for packet lengths above a certain threshold and near 100 Gbps throughput for short packets. Simply put, DPDK accelerated by NDP is a perfect fit for you if you plan to use a high-performance CPU for your tasks and you need full DPDK API compatibility as well as very high throughput.

Download our whitepaper and learn how we are able to achieve 148 Mpps throughpout, a maximum theoretical throughput for DPDK.


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