Big Switch Networks, the Bare Metal Software Defined Networking (SDN) Company, is a startup at the forefront of the next generation of networking technologies.  By combining commodity OEM/ODM Ethernet switch hardware (“bare metal switches”) with sophisticated SDN control software, the company is delivering modern networking fabrics for the world’s most advanced datacenters looking to achieve high degrees of network automation at cloud-competitive price points.

The company’s product lines are focused on data center switching or routing networks and monitoring networks, with more to come.

Big Switch was founded in 2010 and has raised more than $45M from Khosla Ventures, Intel Capital, Index Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Goldman Sachs and others.  With roots in the original Stanford research team that invented SDN, the company is widely considered one of the original SDN pioneers and has one of the industry’s broadest portfolio of enabling technologies for SDN, including the Switch Light Operating System for bare metal physical switches and the virtualized Switch Light vSwitch.

Starting in 2013, the company began packaging technology components in to Bare Metal SDN Fabric Solutions, bringing together the advanced feature sets enabled by SDN software with the industry-leading price points provided by bare metal switches.  While switching and routing is one area of focus, these core technologies are currently being applied in several key networking markets.  The company’s product lines follow a two-prong strategy, with solutions that either augment a network (e.g. the Big Tap Monitoring Fabric) or that replace a network (e.g. the Unified P+V Cloud Fabric).

  • Unified P+V Cloud Switching Fabric solution, currently in beta, streamlines network operations and brings leading public cloud economics within reach of private cloud networks.  Unified P+V Cloud Switching Fabrics bring together physical switches, hypervisor virtual switches and controllers as a unified system and are an alternative to costly Overlay/Underlay cloud network designs.
  • Big Tap Monitoring Fabric solution, currently shipping, is a specialized fabric for tools that need access to network taps, connecting any tap to any tool at any time. It leverages bare metal switching to reduce cost and uses SDN for multi-tenant control, facilitating coordination between teams monitoring the network for areas such as troubleshooting, security, compliance and performance monitoring.

If you are interested in learning more about Bare Metal SDN, or look to get involved in the modern trends in data center networking, follow us @bigswitch or contact us at

James Davis Sr. VP, Global Network Services
Fidelity Investments