FastGate Networking Stack

FastGate Networking Stack

  • Solution for Critical Performance Challenges for Packet Processing and Future SDN

    Industry Challenges

    Since the introduction of WiFi, 3G and LTE, the demand for wireless data has been growing very rapidly. The network performance of wireless access network infrastructure (such as WiFi access controller, LTE EPC) is critical because all user packet data require sophisticated protocols and packet processing (such as L2/L3 tunneling, packet inspection/classifications, QoS control, etc).

    Achieving high throughput and linear scalability are the key challenges that network infrastructure equipment vendors are facing. However, networking stack software and framework that are flexible enough to build different network infrastructure equipment with high performance and scalability are very limited in the market.

    FastGate Network Introduction

    FastGate Network is a well-designed network processing framework with software modules which can be used to build high performance networking equipment. FastGate Network offers the following unique features:

    Optimized for Multi-Core Scalability
    FastGate framework supports lock free packet processing to deliver linear scalability on multi-core processors. Multi-core communication (MCC) enables reliable communications and lock free synchronization between cores.

    Ready for Customized Packet Processing R&D
    FastGate framework includes standard L2 and L3 packet processing modules. Customized packet processing modules can be supported easily in isolated manner. FastGate can effectively reduce time-to-market and development cost.

    Superior Performance
    FastGate can reach line speed packet processing (“physical limit of the interface”) with extremely low latency and can scale linearly. It fully utilizes the interfaces and packet processing power of the hardware. FastGate is at least 10X faster than Linux, and more reliable and scalable.

    There are many innovative design and techniques in FastGate implementation to address high performance, capacity and flexibility requirements.

    Hardware and Platform Agnostics
    FastGate not only supports different networking hardware platforms. Vendor specific features like Cavium POW are often not trivial to use, but FastGate makes it more straightforward. FastGate is also Linux compatible.

    FastGate Applications

    FastGate has been used as the data plane for many networking equipment, and potentially for many others.

    Wireless Infrastructure Equipments
    LTE EPC (Packet Data Network Gateway, Serving Gateway), WiMAX ASN-GW and WiFi access controllers have sophisticated packet processing requirements (e.g. per-connection QoS, mobility, tunneling). ASTRI’s LTE EPC, WiMAX ASN-GW, WiFi + 4G convergence gateway are built using the same FastGate framework.

    Security Appliances
    Carrier grade IPSec security gateway/firewall can support more than 500K users. ASTRI IPSec Security Gateway is one of them.

    Network Appliance
    FastGate includes optimized L2/L3 which can deliver line speed L2/L3 functions like VLAN, trunk, bridging and routing.

    SDN/Network Virtualization
    Network virtualization (such as OpenFlow) is the trend for data center networking. FastGate architecture can be adapted to SDN based networks.

    FastGate Architecture

    • FastPath – Dedicated for packet processing to ensure highest performance
    • SlowPath – Manages protocol states and performs controls
    • Multi-Core Communications – Enables lock free and reliable communications between cores, fast/slow paths, Linux kernel
    FastGate high level architecture
    ASTRI’s FastGate high level architecture

    Hardware and Software Platforms

    • Data Plane Processor
      • Cavium 58xx or 68xx based
      • OS: Cavium Simple Executable + Cavium Linux/Carrier Grade Windriver Linux
    • Hardware Platform
      • Radisys ATCA 7220, 7240 (Cavium 58XX/68XX based)


    ASTRI’s FastGate provides two licensing options:
    • OEM Licensing: Only binaries provided + support/upgrade
    • Source Licensing: Source code provided