Packet Partners with Arm to Accelerate Adoption of Armv8-A for Datacenter Workloads

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Works On Arm to Provide CI/CD Infrastructure for Open Source and Commercial Software Testing

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Our mission at Packet is to provide hardware at the end of an API, empowering developers to quickly take advantage of the innovation occurring at all levels of the ecosystem.

Packet, the leading provider of automated bare metal for developers, today announced a partnership with Arm to support the rapidly expanding ecosystem for the Arm®v8-compatible architecture. Through the partnership, Packet will provide free on-demand access to Armv8-A bare metal systems from Cavium, Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, and others - enabling open source and commercial software projects to easily test against a variety of datacenter-grade machines.

Today, the software community already leverages the popular Linaro Developer Cloud for rapid innovation and CI/CD. Going forward, Linaro will be able to meet increased demand by virtualizing Packet hosted physical servers. However, as datacenter interest in the Armv8-A architecture continues to grow, and compelling new processors are brought to market, direct access to physical infrastructure becomes critical for the software ecosystem to build and deploy next generation workloads that fully utilize the underlying hardware capabilities.

“Our mission at Packet is to provide hardware at the end of an API, empowering developers to quickly take advantage of the innovation occurring at all levels of the ecosystem,” noted Jacob Smith, SVP of Engagement and a co-Founder at Packet. “This partnership builds upon our recent donation to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), and we’re thrilled to work with such a diverse group of innovators in the Arm ecosystem to make the next generation of Arm-based servers available to the developer community.”

In addition to providing access to infrastructure, Arm will support a small group of engineers at Packet to engage deeply with the software community around Armv8-A. As part of the partnership, Packet has re-launched, a site that will serve as a public source of information to help end users, developers, partners, and Arm work in collaboration to accelerate the adoption of servers, based on the Armv8-A architecture, in the datacenter.

“Adopting the benefits of new hardware architectures starts with establishing a robust ecosystem. Packet’s position as a trusted partner in the developer community will enable rapid adoption of these powerful new resources to accelerate interest, compatibility, and demand,” said Jeff Underhill, director of Open Source Enablement, Infrastructure Group, Arm. “By collaborating across the ecosystem, Works On Arm is a testament to the growing strength and diversity of the Arm server market.”

The collaborative nature of Works On Arm represents a unique strength and helps accelerate development of the Armv8-A ecosystem.

“Works On Arm is a collaboration that catalyzes adoption of open source software with leading edge hardware, such as our world’s first 10nm server processor,” notes Elsie Wahlig, director of product management, Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies, Inc. “New cloud compute solutions can be rapidly assembled, prototyped and realized by harnessing Packet’s bare metal automation, the open source developer community, and innovative server technologies. We’re excited to provide Qualcomm Centriq 2400 in a collaborative environment that natively works on Arm.”

“Elastic has been an early beneficiary of the Works On Arm infrastructure for our open source Elastic Stack (Elasticsearch, Kibana, Beats, Kibana), X-Pack, and Elastic Cloud offerings,” said Drew Raines, lead engineer at Elastic. “Our ability to easily deploy physical Armv8 servers for intensive testing has accelerated our progress immensely.”

Other projects include Docker’s LinuxKit team, NixOS, Golang, and CoreOS Container Linux, who can get early access to systems as they come to market, such as Qualcomm®’s Centriq™ 2400 and the upcoming Cavium™ ThunderX2™.

“The Works On Arm partnership provides developers and open source projects with on-demand access to high-end Armv8 systems, including Packet’s popular Type 2a server, which is based on Cavium’s dual-socket capable 48-core ThunderX® processor,” said Larry Wikelius, Vice President, Software Ecosystem and Solutions Group at Cavium. “Importantly, Works on Arm encourages real-time collaboration between hardware and software innovators, which enables the kind performance optimizations that are driving Arm server adoption among a huge range of applications, industries and use cases.”

About Packet
Founded in 2014, Packet’s proprietary technology automates physical servers and networks without the use of virtualization or multi-tenancy to provide on-demand compute and connectivity. Customers can either build on Packet’s public cloud service or leverage advanced automation software to enable their own private compute infrastructure.

The company is headquartered in New York City and maintains an advanced global IP network between its 15 data center locations including facilities in New York Metro (Parsippany, NJ), Sunnyvale (CA), Amsterdam (NL) and Tokyo (JP). Packet is a member of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) where it donates the Community Infrastructure Lab, and is also a supporter of many open source projects, including and

Qualcomm Centriq is a trademark of Qualcomm Incorporated.

Qualcomm Centriq is a product of Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies, Inc.

Cavium, ThunderX, ARM, and XPliant are registered trademarks or trademarks of Cavium Inc., registered in the United States and other countries.

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