Last week, Facebook announced a new product that’s supposed to have the networking industry trembling. There were many news stories about Facebook’s new homegrown SDN switch, known by the codename “Wedge” that’s supposed to be the next big threat to Cisco and the traditional networking vendors. The operating system on the product runs Facebook’s proprietary version of Linux called FBOSS.
Facebook plans to put the switch into the Open Compute Project, an open-source development community that Facebook has been active in. In many ways, Wedge isn’t so much a switch as it is a reference design. Everything in the switch is open source – software, processors, etc. – so anyone can build their own switch from the design. Now, for customers that are interested in this product, there’s no “Facebook Store” to buy this from. Nor can organizations pick up the phone and call the friendly, neighborhood VAR. Instead, businesses would need to order it from a custom manufacturer.