Cumulus Networks
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Cumulus Networks
Cumulus Networks
Private company
IndustryNetworking software, Cloud Networking
FoundedJanuary 2010
Key people
Josh Leslie, CEO,
JR Rivers, Co-Founder,
Nolan Leake, Co-Founder
ProductsOperating System for Switches

Cumulus Networks is a computer software company headquartered in Mountain View, California, USA. The company designs and sells a Linux operating system for industry standard network switches to deliver networking solutions[buzzword] for large datacenter, cloud computing, and enterprise environments.


Cumulus Networks was founded by JR Rivers and Nolan Leake in 2010. The company raised a first round of seed funding in 2012.[1] Cumulus Networks emerged publicly in June 2013[2] after previously operating in stealth mode.[3][4][5] The company is backed by Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Sequoia Capital, Peter Wagner and 4 of the 5 original VMware founders.[6][7]

In 2014 Dell made a deal with Cumulus to offer the option of the Cumulus Linux network OS with their switches.[8]

In 2015, Hewlett Packard Enterprise made a deal with Cumulus Networks to offer Cumulus Linux on their Altoline switches.[9]

In 2016, Mellanox made a deal with Cumulus Networks to offer Cumulus Linux on their Spectrum switches.[10]

In 2018, Lenovo made a deal with Cumulus networks to offer Cumulus Linux on their ThinkSystem Rackswitch [11] line of switches.[12]

On June 20, 2019, the company announced the departure of co-founder JR Rivers, who had been the original CEO and, since March 2016, the CTO.[13] According to the company's website, neither Rivers nor Leake remain on the Board of Directors.


Cumulus Linux

Cumulus Linux is an open source Linux based networking operating system for bare metal switches. It is based on Debian.[14] In a 2017 Gartner report Cumulus Networks was highlighted as a pioneer of open source networking. Gartner drew attention to the fact that Cumulus Networks had developed an open source networking operating system in a market where hardware vendors delivered proprietary operating systems pre-installed. According to Gartner, Cumulus Networks had worked around the lack of vendor support for open source networking by deploying bare metal switches with the Cumulus Linux operating system in large corporate networks. 32 percent of the Fortune 50 companies used the Cumulus Linux operating system in their data centers in 2017.[15]


NetQ is a fabric-wide telemetry-based validation system that enables organizations to validate network state, both during regular operations and for post-mortem diagnostic analysis.[16][17]

Host Pack

Host Pack includes software essentials that brings the host to the network through NetQ and FRRouting. Host Pack focuses on trying to enhance network visibility through NetQ's end-to-end fabric validation, and on trying to promote network connectivity through FRRouting's open source routing protocol. It enables the host to be part of the layer 3 network, while supporting layer 2 overlay networks.[18]

Open source projects

Open Network Install Environment (ONIE)

In 2012 Cumulus initiated the open network install environment project. The Open Compute Project turned ONIE into an initiative to define an open source install environment for bare metal network switches. A network switch with a ONIE install environment gives data centers the choice of network operating system. Therefore ONIE allows for a business model where networking hardware is disaggregated from the operating system. The Cumulus Linux operating system can be installed on all ONIE compliant switches, such as the Lenovo ThinkSystem RackSwitch series.[19]


  1. ^ Stacey Higginbotham (March 5, 2012). "The lowdown on stealth startup Cumulus Networks". GigaOM.
  2. ^ Deborah Gage (June 19, 2013). "Bringing Linux to Networking, Cumulus Publicly Emerges" (blog). The Wall Street Journal.
  3. ^ Paul Venezia (June 19, 2013). "Cumulus Networks unveils 'Cisco killer'".
  4. ^ Greg Ferro (June 19, 2013). "Cumulus Networks Casts a Shadow On Cisco Strategy".
  5. ^ Jack Clark (June 20, 2013). "Cumulus sighting means storm coming for Cisco".
  6. ^ "Cumulus Networks(TM) Brings The Power Of Linux® To Networking". June 19, 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-06-27.
  7. ^ "Cumulus Networks Investors".
  8. ^ "Dell Teams With Cumulus Networks To Sell Bare-Metal Switches".
  9. ^ "HP Launches New Open Network Switches for Web Scale Cloud Data Centers".
  10. ^ "Mellanox Lets Cumulus Linux Ride its Ethernet Switches". SDxCentral. 2016-03-07. Retrieved .
  11. ^ "Lenovo ThinkSystem NE2572O RackSwitch Product Guide > Lenovo Press". Retrieved .
  12. ^ "Lenovo Partners With Cumulus on Open Networking". eWeek. 2018-12-11. Retrieved .
  13. ^ "Co-Founder and CTO JR Rivers Leaves Cumulus Networks". Sdx Central. 20 June 2019.
  14. ^ "Cumulus Linux: An open network operating system on Linux | Cumulus Networks". Retrieved .
  15. ^ Micha? Chora? & Ryszard S. Chora?, eds. (2018). Image Processing and Communications Challenges 10: 10th International Conference, IP&C'2018 Bydgoszcz, Poland, November 2018, Proceedings. Springer. p. 151. ISBN 9783030036584.CS1 maint: uses editors parameter (link)
  16. ^ "NetQ Fabric Validation | Cumulus Networks". Retrieved .
  17. ^ "Cumulus launches NetQ to monitor networks built on its SDN software". SearchSDN. Retrieved .
  18. ^ "Linux Network OS | Cumulus Networks". Retrieved .
  19. ^ Linda Hardesty (10 December 2018). "Lenovo Works With Cumulus to Offer Disaggregated Switch Hardware, Software". Retrieved .

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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