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By | Richard Chirgwin 28th September 2015 13:05

Cisco who? HP puts Pica8's OS into its open switches

That'll solve all our scaling issues, chuckles SDN upstart's carefree veep

HP has taken another step away from the world of the Borg, certifying the Pica8 open switching operating system to run on its Altoline open networking switches.

The deal also includes global HP resale and support of PicOS. That's a big deal for the small company, as Pica8's marketing veep Steve Garrison told The Register: “Scaling is a challenge for the small company. HP is solving our go-to-market, service delivery and solution delivery challenges.”

HP's Sean Maddox said it's clear that for SDN to get wide adoption, “having OpenFlow-capable devices isn't enough. SDN has to have an ecosystem that spans hardware, software controllers, and applications".

And the open approach to SDN means “you don't have to have a soup-to-nuts-stack with all the product content from one supplier”, Maddox added.

Maddox also pointed to HP's global networking workforce of 7,000, plus around 5,000 Linux staffers (some of the former having been long-time Cisco techs) as a big part of the deal.

The support arrangement will start with training a hundred engineers on Pica8, Maddox said, and extending that across the other networking and Linux experts, he said.

Pica8's Garrison said arrangements like this get SDN off the whiteboard, and start demonstrating the business and technology value.

“We already have pre-qualified application partners in HP's SDN app store,” he said, with apps for VPN provisioning and Wi-Fi management showing that SDN is getting out of the hyperscale data centre and into the enterprise. ®

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