Home Business IT Cloud CloudRouter project to develop software-based secure router

CloudRouter project to develop software-based secure router

Software has started taking over many functions traditionally handled by hardware and networking is but the latest. And a natural outcome of this trend is the setting up of a project that creates open source routing and software-defined networking technologies for the cloud.

Named CloudRouter, the project kicked off officially today in Silicon Valley. It is backed in the main by peering company International Internet Exchange (IIX) and headed by Jay Turner, who is a 16-year veteran of Red Hat.

Turner is the head of DevOps at IIX and was a founding member of Red Hat's satellite engineering team which oversaw development of code that was later released to the community as Spacewalk. Turner has also participated in projects such as Fedora, oVirt, Gluster, Red Hat JBoss Operations Network and Red Hat Global File System.

The project will accept outside contributions, Turner said during a chat with iTWire, adding that the different bits would all be under open-source licences. The code developed by the project itself is under the AGPL 3 licence.

He said that to his knowledge there were no competitors to CloudRouter at the moment. While IIX is the sponsor and primary contributor to CloudRouter, other projects like  CloudBees, Cloudius Systems, NGINX and OpenDaylight are also involved.

Asked whether companies whose primary products are routers with proprietary software would not feel somewhat threatened by the development of software-defined networking, Turner admitted this was true. "However, I think it will be a long time before the main routers on the internet are replaced by SDN," he added.

He said that projects like CloudRouter stood to gain from the disclosures by American whistleblower Edward Snowden as there would always be the suspicion about the existence of backdoors, put there at the insistence of the NSA, in proprietary software.

"Open source software provides the code for examination and any backdoors can be detected," Turner said.

CloudRouter will incorporate the latest release of OpenDaylight - a project sponsored by the Linux Foundation to enable SDN and create a foundation for network function virtualisation for networks of any size and scale - maintain a stable and up-to-date Linux distribution based on Fedora.

A beta version is available for download here.

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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.