A first solution to accelerate software processing comes from accelerators. Many performance accelerator products are already on the market such as DPDKs (Data Plane Development Kits). The DPDK environment is a set of data plane libraries and network interface drivers that accelerate communications. Actual virtual machine migrations – the actual transport of all the software associated with a virtual machine – from one physical machine to another physical machine now take only a few milliseconds to complete.

A second accelerator, FD.io (Fast Data – Input/Output), comes from a simple observation that the more congestion there is, the more packets are waiting in the output queues and the more time can be saved by processing several packets from the same session simultaneously.

DPDK and FD.io are good examples of accelerators that can bridge the performance gap of processors handling certain software that needs to achieve high performance. There are other types of accelerators that can be seen as intermediaries between pure software solutions and pure hardware solutions. However, the advent of increasingly powerful reconfigurable microprocessors is a much better way to accelerate processing.

The return to hardware is inevitable. Indeed, going back to hardware accelerates performances and gains in consumed energy, but the loss comes from a lower flexibility. To make up for this deficit, we need to move to hardware virtualization instead of software virtualization. ...

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