Both IPv6 and Software Defined Networking (SDN) loom large in the Future of Networking. One would therefore anticipate a natural affinity between IPv6 and SDN. And yet, the leading SDN control protocol, the OpenFlow Switch protocol, is only now coming to market on products with capabilities that can form the foundation of SDN-based solutions for IPv6 networking.
The leading OpenFlow Switch protocol available in the market today is version 1.0 (OFS1.0), published in 2009, almost 4 years ago. The first OFS version to offer real support for IPv6 is OFS1.3, first published within the ONF in the spring of 2012, and OFS1.3-enabled products are only now coming forward. Although I chair a working group at the Open Networking Foundation (which manages the development of OpenFlow), folks who know me will tell you that I don’t sugar coat things. I will talk through the good news / bad news of today’s OpenFlow Switch protocol, covering these topics:
[Image Credit: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Handshake_stylised.png; OpenFlow logo is trademark of Open Networking Foundation, opennetworking.org]