NYSE Euronext is the latest announced exchange customer for Solarflare Communications, which sells go-faster 10gE network interface cards (NICs) and acceleration software. The company announced CBOE as a customer earlier this month.
Specifically, NYSE has deployed Solarflare’s SFN5122F 10GbE server adapter with its EnterpriseOnload software to reduce latency and jitter on network I/O in its distributed core trading systems.
EnterpriseOnload is Solarflare’s commercial packaging of its OpenOnload open-source offering. One gets what one pays for – in this case that means better support with SLAs.
OpenOnload is Linux-based software that facilitates data transfer between a NIC and an application’s memory space, without the need to run TCP/IP stacks and network drivers on the main CPU – aka Kernel bypass.
Among other things, Solarflare says that OpenOnload allows for TCP and UDP protocols (including multicast) and provides a BSD sockets API, so most applications do not require code changes to take advantage of the performance boost.
It sounds to me as though OpenOnload is similar in functionality to Mellanox Technologies’ VMA acceleration software (in use at the Singapore Exchange), and Chelsio Communications’ recently-introduced WireDirect, though being open source, it’s the right price. No doubt there are other differences, and I am sure Steve Pope will point those out!