For any link speed at any time
PLUG & PLAY
Out of the box solution
Multiple SmartNICs in one server
Synchronize multiple servers
Accelerate your application
IN-LINE AT 200G
Full throughput with zero packet loss
Multiple speeds in one server
More powerful server usage
Full line-rate packet capture
Napatech SmartNICs are highly optimized to capture network traffic at full line-rate, with almost no CPU load on the host server, for all frame sizes. Zero-loss packet capture is critical for applications that need to analyze all the network traffic. If anything needs to be discarded, it is a matter of choice by the application, not a limitation of the SmartNIC. Standard network interface cards (NICs) are not designed for analysis applications where all traffic on a connection or link needs to be analyzed. NICs are designed for communication where data that is not addressed to the sender or receiver is simply discarded. This means that NICs are not designed to have the capacity to handle the amount of data that is regularly transmitted in bursts on Ethernet connections. In these burst situations, all of the bandwidth of a connection is used, requiring the capacity to analyze all Ethernet frames. Napatech SmartNICs are designed specifically for this task and provide the maximum theoretical packet capture capacity.
Multi-port packet sequence and merge
Napatech SmartNICs typically provide multiple ports. Ports are usually paired, with one port receiving upstream packets and another port receiving downstream packets. Since these two flows going in different directions need to be analyzed as one, packets from both ports must be merged into a single analysis stream. Napatech SmartNICs can sequence and merge packets received on multiple ports in hardware using the precise time stamps of each Ethernet frame. This is highly efficient and offloads a significant and costly task from the analysis application.
There is a growing need for analysis appliances that are able to monitor and analyze multiple points in the network, and even provide a network-wide view of what is happening. Not only does this require multiple SmartNICs to be installed in a single appliance, but it also requires that the analysis data from all ports on every accelerator be correlated.
With the Napatech Software Suite, it is possible to sequence and merge the analysis data from multiple SmartNICs into a single analysis stream. The merging is based on the nanosecond precision time stamps of each Ethernet frame, allowing a time-ordered merge of individual data streams.
Intelligent Multi-CPU distribution
Modern servers provide unprecedented processing power with multi-core CPU implementations. This makes standard servers an ideal platform for appliance development. But, to fully harness the processing power of modern servers, it is important that the analysis application is multi-threaded and that the right Ethernet frames are provided to the right CPU core for processing. Not only that, but the frames must be provided at the right time to ensure that analysis can be performed in real time.
Napatech Multi-CPU distribution is built and optimized from our extensive knowledge of server architecture, as well as real life experience from our customers.
Napatech SmartNICs ensure that identified flows of related Ethernet frames are distributed in an optimal way to the available CPU cores. This ensures that the processing load is balanced across the available processing resources, and that the right frames are being processed by the right CPU cores.
With flow distribution to multiple CPU cores, the throughput performance of the analysis application can be increased linearly with the number of cores, up to 128. Not only that, but the performance can also be scaled by faster processing cores. This highly flexible mechanism enables many different ways of designing a solution and provides the ability to optimize for cost and/or performance.
Napatech SmartNICs support different distribution schemes that are fully configurable:
Hardware Time Stamp
The ability to establish the precise time when frames have been captured is critical to many applications.
To achieve this, all Napatech SmartNICs are capable of providing a high-precision time stamp, sampled with 1 nanosecond resolution, for every frame captured and transmitted.
At 10 Gbps, an Ethernet frame can be received and transmitted every 67 nanoseconds. At 100 Gbps, this time is reduced to 6.7 nanoseconds. This makes nanosecond-precision time-stamping essential for uniquely identifying when a frame is received. This incredible precision also enables you to sequence and merge frames from multiple ports on multiple SmartNICs into a single, time-ordered analysis stream.
In order to work smoothly in the different operating systems supported, Napatech SmartNICs support a range of industry standard time stamp formats, and also offer a choice of resolution to suit different types of applications.
64-bit time stamp formats:
Optimum Cache Utilization
Napatech SmartNICs use a buffering strategy that allocates a number of large memory buffers where as many packets as possible are placed back-to-back in each buffer. Using this implementation, only the first access to a packet in the buffer is affected by the access time to external memory. Thanks to cache pre-fetch, the subsequent packets are already in the level 1 cache before the CPU needs them. As hundreds or even thousands of packets can be placed in a buffer, a very high CPU cache performance can be achieved leading to application acceleration.
Buffer configuration can have a dramatic effect on the performance of analysis applications. Different applications have different requirements when it comes to latency or processing. It is therefore extremely important that the number and size of buffers can be optimized for the given application. Napatech SmartNICs make this possible.
The flexible server buffer structure supported by Napatech SmartNICs can be optimized for different application requirements. For example, applications needing short latency can have frames delivered in small chunks, optionally with a fixed maximum latency. Applications without latency requirements can benefit data delivered in large chunks, providing more effective server CPU processing by having the data. Applications that need to correlate information distributed across packets can configure larger server buffers (up to 128 GB).
Up to 128 buffers can be configured and combined with Napatech multi-CPU distribution (see “Multi-CPU distribution”).
On-Board Packet Buffering
Napatech SmartNICs provide on-board memory for buffering of Ethernet frames. Buffering assures guaranteed delivery of data, even when there is congestion in the delivery of data to the application. There are three potential sources of congestion: the PCI interface, the server platform, and the analysis application.
PCI interfaces provide a fixed bandwidth for transfer of data from the SmartNIC to the application. This limits the amount of data that can be continuously transferred from the network to the application. For example, a 16-lane PCIe Gen3 interface can transfer up to 115 Gbps of data to the application. If the network speed is 2×100 Gbps, a burst of data cannot be transferred over the PCIe Gen3 interface in real time, since the data rate is twice the maximum PCIe bandwidth. In this case, the onboard packet buffering on the Napatech SmartNIC can absorb the burst and ensure that none of the data is lost, allowing the frames to be transferred once the burst has passed.
Servers and applications can be configured in such a way that congestion can occur in the server infrastructure or in the application itself. The CPU cores can be busy processing or retrieving data from remote caches and memory locations, which means that new Ethernet frames cannot be transferred from the SmartNIC.
In addition, the application can be configured with only one or a few processing threads, which can result in the application being overloaded, meaning that new Ethernet frames cannot be transferred. With onboard packet buffering, the Ethernet frames can be delayed until the server or the application is ready to accept them. This ensures that no Ethernet frames are lost and that all the data is made available for analysis when needed.
In mobile networks, all subscriber Internet traffic is carried in GTP (GPRS Tunneling Protocol) or IP-in-IP tunnels between nodes in the mobile core. IP-in-IP tunnels are also used in enterprise networks. Monitoring traffic over interfaces between these nodes is crucial for assuring Quality of Service (QoS).
Napatech SmartNICs decode these tunnels, providing the ability to correlate and load balance based on flows inside the tunnels. Analysis applications can use this capability to test, secure, and optimize mobile networks and services. To effectively analyze the multiple services associated with each subscriber, it is important to separate them and analyze each one individually. Napatech SmartNICs have the capability to identify the contents of tunnels, allowing for analysis of each service used by a subscriber. This quickly provides the needed information to the application, and allows for efficient analysis of network and application traffic. The Napatech features for frame classification, flow identification, filtering, coloring, slicing, and intelligent multi-CPU distribution can thus be applied to the contents of the tunnel rather than the tunnel itself, leading to a more balanced processing and a more efficient analysis.
GTP and IP-in-IP tunneling are powerful features for telecom equipment vendors who need to build mobile network monitoring products. With this feature, Napatech can off-load and accelerate data analysis, allowing customers to focus on optimizing the application, and thereby maximizing the processing resources in standard servers.
IP fragment handling
IP fragmentation occurs when larger Ethernet frames need to be broken into several fragments in order to be transmitted across the network. This can be due to limitations in certain parts of the network, typically when GTP tunneling protocols are used. Fragmented frames are a challenge for analysis applications, as all fragments must be identified and potentially reassembled before analysis can be performed. Napatech SmartNICs can identify fragments of the same frame and ensure that these are associated and sent to the same CPU core for processing. This significantly reduces the processing burden for analysis applications.
In-line application support
The Napatech SmartNIC family supports 4 Gbps in-line applications enabling customers to create powerful, yet flexible in-line solutions on standard servers. The more CPU-demanding the application is, and the higher the speeds of links, the higher the value of this solution. Features include:
Napatech Software Suite provides an efficient migration path by allowing you to mix and match ports and speeds. An advanced cooling design assures the required airflow while sensors monitor voltage, power, and temperature.
Detect Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) and other breaches to your network at 2x100G speeds – no activity goes unnoticed.
Across industries, cyber assaults are accumulating at alarming rates. Hackers are constantly refining their tactics and repeatedly circumventing static defenses.
To identify any suspicious activity on your network, you need full visibility at all times. Even a marginal fraction of information lost can potentially compromise the safety of your business. Who has been on your network, what have they done, and when exactly did they do it? A myriad of intelligent security solutions are available to help you answer these questions – but to deliver the needed insights, they need fully reliable data. And with network speeds advancing to 100G, the challenge of attaining reliable data is firmly growing.
With the Napatech Compact 2 x 100G accelerator, we help you ensure that no data is lost and no activity goes unnoticed. Napatech provides guaranteed delivery of network data, and supply all the information needed for effective forensic analysis in real-time, even at speeds up to 100G. This means a much shorter response time, improved mitigation and ultimately a reinforced security.
Break through the cost/performance barrier when upgrading to 100G speeds.
With the increasing number of telecom carriers migrating to 100G solutions, the need to continually upgrade network performance is growing. But monitoring and analyzing 2 x 100G of communication brings certain challenges. The common approach requires a comprehensive system of numerous 10G lines connected to a range of appliances – but this escalates both complexity and cost.
The compact 2 x 100G accelerator from Napatech enables direct analysis of 100G with just a single server. It merges upstream and downstream data so specific information can be delivered directly to the right CPU core even for fragmented traffic and GTP tunnels. This lowers the processing load on the CPUs and enables the application to efficiently analyze the target data in 1U form factor servers.
With the compact 2 x 100G accelerator, applications will be able to monitor performance and analyze quality of experience even at 100G. This enables telecom operators to improve quality, while better managing the bandwidth challenges posed by rich media applications.
Enable full flow analysis of your 100G infrastructure in real-time, and keep rackspace, power and cooling at a minimum.
Maintaining performance while enhancing services to accommodate 100G and beyond is fundamental to the long-term viability of cloud and data center businesses. Data center managers are further challenged to retain the lowest possible CAPEX and OPEX.
With the compact 2 x 100G accelerator, Napatech is helping the industry to tackle these challenges. Because of its compact design, this solution enables 2 x 100G applications in 1U server platforms, thus saving rack space and cutting costs while maintaining integrity and performance.
With its intuitive plug and play features, this solution can be seamlessly integrated and significantly accelerate time-to-market, even for advanced Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) and netflow based applications. As Napatech SmartNICs provide the freedom to mix and match ports and speeds, customers can continually scale their solutions to accommodate the ever-changing market dynamics.
Provide reliable results and insights for 100G links without compromise, in real time and with nanosecond precision.
With the colossal growth of web-based applications and cloud services, users are demanding greater access to data at faster speeds. In the era of 100G, network operators are in continuous pursuit of more effective monitoring and analysis solutions to help them boost performance. But even the best solutions cannot deliver without completely reliable data.
The compact 2 x 100G accelerator guarantees quick and accurate data delivery even at 100G. Traffic on the two 100G ports is timestamped with nanosecond precision and delivered to the network application in the right order – a huge benefit for the analysis of network traffic. This enables network solutions to instantly and effectively identify and remediate any performance issues – and ultimately helps to optimize infrastructure, increase network uptime and reduce the number of man-hours required to identify any issues.
NT200A01-SCC & NT200A01-NEBS
Supported Optical Transceivers
Hardware Time Stamp
Pluggable Options for Time Synchronization
Host Interface and Memory
Environment for NT200A01-SCC
Environment for NT200A01-NEBS
Regulatory Approvals and Compliances