Host CPU Offload Adapters?

In last week’s blog, we discussed the term “SmartNIC” and its use when referencing FPGA-based adapters. SmartNIC is a great marketing term because it piggybacks off the overall “smart revolution” that encompasses phones, watches, houses etc.

However, the more descriptive (but admittedly boring) term for Accolade ANIC cards is “host CPU offload adapters”. In fact, we often refer interchangeably to ANIC cards as SmartNICs or host CPU offload adapters. The latter clearly does not role off the tongue but gets at the essence of what the adapter does.

The purpose of ANIC adapters is to remove or offload the burden of repetitive, packet processing functions from the appliance’s host CPU. In other words, free up the host CPU to deal with high value functions and not mundane tasks which are better left to an FPGA. Examples of these repetitive, packet processing functions are timestamping, flow shunting, deduplication, packet filtering, and flow classification.

SmartNIC and host CPU offload adapter are terms we use at Accolade Technology, but one of our main partners and the supplier of all our FPGAs, prefers the term “adaptable accelerator cards”. This is also arguably an awkward phrase but works for Xilinx because their Alveo platform is meant for many purposes (hence adaptable) and acceleration is in some sense another form of offload. In other words, with Xilinx Alveo adapters you can accelerate your host CPU processing because the FPGA offloads the burden.

Accolade Technology offers a complete line of host CPU offload adapters or SmartNICs from 1G all the way up to 2-ports of 100G. For a complete review of all ANIC adapter features please see this URL.

Host CPU Offload Product Features Summary

wdt_ID Speed 1G 10G 10G 10G 10G/40G 10G/40G 100G 100G 100G
1 Model 4Ku 20ku 40ku 40kq 80ku ATLAS-1100 Service Node ANIC-200KFlex ANIC-100Kq ANIC-200Kq
2 Port/Type 4X1G SFP 2X10G SFP+ 4X10G SFP+ 1X40G QSFP+ 4X10G SFP+ 2X40G QSFP+ 8X10G SFP+ 4x10G SFP+ 1x40G QSFP+ 2x100G QSFP28 2x40G QSFP28 1X100G QSFP28 2X100G QSFP28
3 PCIe Interface Gen3 x8 Gen3 x8 Gen3 x8 Gen3 x8 Gen3 x8 Gen3 x8 Gen3 x16 Gen3 x16 Gen3 x16
4 Dimensions(H x L inches) 4.25 x 6.5   4.25 x 6.25 4.25 x 6.25 4.25 x 6.25 4.25 x 6.25 1.75 x12.28x14 4.25 x 6.5 4.25 x 10.5 4.25 x 10.5
5 Memory 32MB 4G 4G 4G 4G 16/32G 8G 12G 12G
6 Timestamp 5.7 nS 5.7 nS 5.7 nS 5.7 nS 5.7 nS 5.7 nS 4 nS 4 nS 4 nS
7 100% Packet
8 Gigamon, AristaTimestamp
9 Packet Merging
10 Packet Parsing

About Accolade

Accolade is the technology leader in FPGA-based Host CPU Offload and 100% Packet Capture PCIe NIC’s and Scalable 1U Platforms. Accolade’s line of 1-100GE products enable 100% packet capture, flow classification, flow shunting, deduplication, packet filtering and more. Our customers are global leaders in network monitoring & cybersecurity applications as well as in the network test and measurement, telecom and video stream monitoring markets.

FPGA Acceleration Features

100% Packet Capture | Flow Classification | Flow Shunting | Precise Time Stamping | Packet Merging | Packet Slicing | Packet Parsing | Packet Filtering | Deduplication | Host Packet Buffer | Packet Steering | Direct Memory Access (DMA) | Statistics (RMON1)

Free Product Evaluation

Resolve all your host CPU offload bottlenecks. Share Your Technical Requirements with our FPGA and software experts to tailor the optimal solution. Accolade offers a 60 day free product evaluation for qualified customers to fully test and evaluate our products.