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Pensando Systems, the networking startup founded by the team of engineers who built Cisco’s flagship switching products, is launching a new switching solution — and it’s doing so in partnership with one of Cisco’s biggest competitors: Hewlett Packard Enterprise. 

HPE and Pensando are rolling out a new networking offering known as a distributed services switch, the two firms announced on Tuesday. The technology aims to make it more affordable for enterprises to manage web traffic for edge computing, in which data processing is located physically closer to companies’ data centers or connected devices like smart cars.

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 20, 2021 — Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, introduced the industry’s first Distributed Services Switch enabling enterprises to deploy software-defined stateful services where data is created and processed, eliminating legacy appliances and host software needed to build the hybrid clouds demanded by modern applications and IT organizations.

The Aruba CX 10000 Series Switch

“Markets in transition create new opportunities for disruption. As the Cloud moves to the Edge, distributed services are disrupting everything from AI/ML, to 5G and virtualization,” said John Chambers, chairman of Pensando, CEO of JC2 Ventures, and former CEO of Cisco Systems. “This new category – the Distributed Services Switch, enabled by Pensando software-in-silicon, makes the process of deploying distributed services, previously only available to hyperscalers like AWS, in the enterprise both simple and more cost-effective. By eliminating legacy appliances and host software, enterprises can deliver 100x the scale and 10x the performance at 1/3 the TCO of traditional approaches.”

The Aruba CX 10000 Series Switch represents a new category of data center switches that combines best-of-breed Aruba data center L2/3 switching with the industry’s only, fully programmable DPU (Pensando Elba) to deliver stateful software-defined services inline, at scale, with wire-rate performance and orders of magnitude scale and performance improvements over traditional data center L2/3 switches at a fraction of their TCO.

”Aruba and Pensando have enabled the industry’s first distributed services architecture that allows enterprises to create and operate network infrastructures that perform and scale just like the hyperscale infrastructure giants,” said Alan Weckel, founder and technology analyst at 650 Group. “We believe this is an emerging industry category, distinguished from all others, that will grow over time. New and emerging workloads like AI/ML will drive the ecosystem towards comparable solutions based on innovative, distributed services principles.”

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