The new SmartNIC extends accelerated computing by leveraging software-defined, hardware-accelerated engines to offload more security and network processing from CPUs.
Amit Krig, senior vice president of software and NIC products in Nvidia's Mellanox networking business said: “Modern cloud and enterprise data centers rely on accelerated networking to address their scalability and compute challenges. ConnectX-6 Lx SmartNIC delivers cost-effective, accelerated and secure networking for the new era of disaggregated, composable data centres.”
The new SmartNIC has accelerated security features such as IPsec in-line cryptography and Hardware Root of Trust, and a 10x performance improvement for Connection Tracking. The big idea is that it can manage Zero Trust security throughout the data centre. Nvidia claims it has best-in-class RDMA over converged Ethernet (RoCE), advanced virtualisation and containerizsation, and NVMe over Fabrics storage offloads provide highly scalable and performant networking.
Scott Raynovich, founder and chief technologist of Futuriom, said “The server industry is rapidly transitioning from 10GbE to 25GbE network speeds with fast growth expected. With increasing requirements being placed on the network, more offloads need to be performed on SmartNICs.
"Nvidia's Mellanox ConnectX-6 Lx enables SmartNIC offloads, including advanced switching and security, in a cost-efficient 25/50GbE solution”.
The Mellanox ConnectX-6 Lx provides two ports of 25Gb/s, or a single port of 50Gb/s, Ethernet connectivity with PCIe Gen 3.0/4.0 x8 host connectivity;Security features including Hardware Root of Trust, Connection Tracking for stateful L4 firewalls, and in-line IPSec cryptography acceleration;GPUDirec RDMA acceleration for NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) storage, scale-out accelerated computing and high-speed video transfer applications;Zero Touch RoCE (ZTR) for scalable, easy-to-deploy, best-in-class RoCE without switch configuration and accelerated switching and packet processing (ASAP2), with built-in SR-IOV and VirtIO hardware offloads for virtualisation and containerisation, to accelerate software-defined networking and connection tracking for firewall services
ConnectX-6 Lx is sampling now, with general availability expected in Q3 2020. It is compatible with the Mellanox SmartNIC software stack and works with Mellanox Spectrum switches and the LinkX family of cables and transceivers, ConnectX SmartNICs for high-performance networks.
Mellanox SmartNICs and software are used in cloud, hyperscale and enterprise data centers, high-performance computing, cybersecurity, and financial services systems around the world.