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Nvidia acquires data centre networking specialist Cumulus Networks

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Graphics giant Nvidia has announced plans to acquire data centre networking specialist Cumulus Networks. The acquisition of Cumulus, which is headquartered in Mountain View, California, will bolster Nvidia’s networking software capabilities, the company said.

The two companies did not disclose the transaction details.

Given that Cumulus had raised $134 million since it was founded in 2010, the size of the deal could be considerably big, TechCrunch reported.

Cumulus already had a previous partnership with high-performance networking major Mellanox, which Nvidia recently acquired for $6.9 billion.

“With Cumulus, Nvidia can innovate and optimise across the entire networking stack from chips and systems to software including analytics like Cumulus NetQ, delivering great performance and value to customers,” Amit Katz, Vice President Ethernet Switch at Mellanox, wrote in a blog post.

This open networking platform is extensible and allows enterprise and cloud-scale data centres full control over their operations, he said.

Cumulus supports more than 100 hardware platforms with Cumulus Linux, its operating system for network switches.

“Our ultrafast Nvidia Mellanox Spectrum switches already ship with Cumulus Linux and SONiC, the open source offering forged in Microsoft’s Azure cloud and managed by the Open Compute Project,” Katz said.

The courtship began in 2013, when Mellanox was forming its Open Ethernet strategy.

Nvidia’s approach to creating both the hardware and software for accelerated computing expands deeper into networking software with Cumulus.

“The ability to innovate across the entire technology stack will help us deliver performance at scale for the accelerated, software-defined data center,” Katz said.

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