Centec Boosts SDN Applications with N-Flow Technology

SANTA CLARA, Calif., April 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Centec Networks, a leading innovator of IP/Ethernet switching silicon and advanced turnkey system solutions, today announced N-FlowTM technology in its third generation GreatBelt Series Switching Silicon at Open Networking Summit 2013 (ONS 2013), to enable more advanced applications for Software-Defined Networking (SDN), in an attempt to widen the commercialization of the OpenFlowTM protocol.

TCAM (Ternary Content Addressable Memory) is widely used in supporting the wildcard matching rule according to OpenFlow™ specifications, resulting in high power, cost, and limited number of entries. In most applications of the OpenFlow protocol, the required flow key may be different. However, for a specific application, usually the required key fields are identical, such as IP 5-tuple key fields. As such, Centec Networks introduced N-FlowTM technology to combine TCAM-based wildcard rules with hash-based exact match rules. N-FlowTM technology can greatly extend the number of flows embedded on the chip, while maintaining the flexibility of matching rules, at a cost and power level similar to regular switch silicon.

With N-FlowTM technology, GreatBelt supports up to 64K L2 flows, 64K IPv4 flows, or 32K L2+IPv4 flows, as well as 4K wildcard matching flows on the chip. It also features two stage flow tables that can be concatenated with metadata, with more stage flow tables available via Centec's patented internal loopback mechanism. The chip provides 120G bps switching capacity with less than 15W power consumption at maximum. It optimizes for OpenFlow 1.3 to support group table, meter, and MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching).

"Merchant silicon plays a vital role in the SDN ecosystem," said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation. "We are pleased to see more innovations in switching silicon to enable advanced and scalable SDN applications to deliver cost efficient services with performance."

SDN and the OpenFlow protocol are promising technologies that are revolutionizing today's networks. The technology is still in its early stage, but the increase in innovative implementations and deployments are driving the technology to maturity, and enabling cost-efficient service offerings. In support of its movement, Centec Networks' innovative N-FlowTM makes GreatBelt series silicon ideal for large-scale SDN and the OpenFlow protocol deployments.

"Centec Networks is pioneering in switch silicon-enabling SDN and OpenFlow protocol applications. The number and flexibility of flows that N-FlowTM provides have attracted overwhelming interest from leading SDN players," said Tao Gu, vice president of business development of Centec Networks. "We are working closely with ecosystem partners such as ODM, controller vendors and solution providers. We have joint demos with NEC, LSI, and Vello System at Open Networking Summit in Santa Clara, Calif., and we welcome attendees to come and see our new SDN technology and products."

About GreatBelt SDN Whitepaper

Centec recently released a white paper on GreatBelt SDN Innovations with N-FlowTM. For a free download, please visit Centec's website.

About Centec Networks

Centec Networks is a technology leader providing high-speed carrier-grade IP/Ethernet switching silicon and advanced ODM/OEM system solutions. Since 2005, Centec has delivered a series of silicon and system products, covering a wide range of carrier access and aggregation market. Centec's cutting-edge silicon products and system solutions enable telecom/network equipment vendors to build complete product portfolios with dramatically reduced development costs and rapidly improved time-to-market. For more information, please visit

Enka Hu
Tel: +86-512-62885358

Source: Centec Networks (Suzhou) Co., Ltd.