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Ethernet overlay networks are a powerful tool for virtualizing networked applications. Their performance suffers on advanced interconnects such as Infiniband, however, be-cause of differences between the semantics of Ethernet and the underlying network. In this paper, the authors demonstrate that providing a virtual TCP offload Ethernet device to the guest operating system dramatically improves overlay network performance on advanced interconnects like Infiniband. The virtual offload device enables the overlay system to leverage the semantics and performance characteristics of the underlying network to maximize overlay performance.
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