Enhancing K8s Networking with SmartNICs

Dave Cremins at KubeCon + CloudNativeCon North America 2020

As more workloads like IoT, big data and machine learning move towards the edge, it becomes critical that networks continue to advance. Low latency, performance and higher throughput become prerequisites to ensure that the edge is a viable location for heavy duty applications. There is a growing trend of building new K8s clusters on bare-metal infrastructure, eliminating the need to deploy hypervisors for hardware abstraction. Better performance at scale can be attributed to K8s enhancements in resource management and accelerated networking. SmartNICs bring further opportunities for packet processing. By offloading more operations to the NIC, we free up resources on the host enabling us to further accelerate the processing capabilities of the entire platform. With these offloads, edge computing can reach its full potential and become a desired choice for high-performance workloads.