I’ve been a huge fan of Cisco and NetApp’s FlexPod since 2011, when I had the pleasure of working with it for the first time. We had just gotten two brand new UCS Chassis full of B-Series blades, and I was impressed with how quickly I had them up and running. I wired up the UCS Chassis to a Nexus 5000 switch I had in the lab, as well as a NetApp FAS2020, it wasn’t pretty, and it wasn’t in the same rack, but it was still a FlexPod. When I did some firmware updates a couple of weeks later, again, it was simple process. I could have actually scheduled it to run later, which I thought was an extremely cool feature. It took next to no time to have everything revved to current levels (the poor UCS sat in the lab neglected for a few months before I got my hands on it).
FlexPod has come a long way since then, so let’s take a look at some of the hottest Cisco Validated Designs out there today, and a little bit more about what makes a FlexPod a FlexPod Read More »
Tags: #ciscochampion, Cisco UCS, FAS, FlexPod, Nexus 5000
What is the new Nexus 5600?
We at Cisco are really excited to introduce the new Cisco Nexus 5600 platform! It is the third generation of industry’s leading Data Center Server-Access Nexus 5000 series of switches. Cisco Nexus 5600 is the successor of industry’s most widely adopted Cisco Nexus 5500 series switches (with over 20,000 customers and 25 million ports shipped) that maintain all the existing Nexus 5500 features such as LAN/SAN convergence, Fabric Extenders (FEX) and Fabric Path.
The new Nexus 5600 was unveiled at CiscoLive Milan in January 2014 with quite a bit of interest
Nuts and Bolts
We are introducing 2 models under the 5600 platform:
Cisco Nexus 5672UP – A 1 RU 10/40G Ethernet switch offering wire-speed performance for up to 48 10G Ethernet ports (16 of which are Unified Ports) and 6 true 40G ports.
Cisco Nexus 56128P – A 2 RU 10/40G Ethernet switch offering wire-speed performance for up to 96 10G Ethernet ports (48 of which are Unified Ports) and 8 true 40G ports..
In addition to the existing features of the Nexus 5000, 5600 platform brings new features such as True 40 GE support, VXLAN bridging and routing and Cisco Dynamic Fabric Automation (DFA) innovation. With a latency of about 1 µsec, the 5600 platform is ideal for applications which need low latency. For those of you who need network programmability, the Nexus 5600 supports Cisco OnePK and Openflow.
Why these new features matter
Extensibility with VXLAN support
The Cisco Nexus 5600 with its VXLAN support is very well suited for multi-tenant cloud deployments. In large scale, multi-tenant cloud deployments, there is a need for VMs to migrate across layer-3 boundaries. Traditional VLANs only support about 4000 VLANs which are insufficient in the deployments of thousands of VMs. With the migration need across layer-3 boundaries complexities of layer-3 routers are introduced. To solve the scalability as well as the migration issues VXLAN was developed. For more details on VXLAN, watch the video: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/prod/collateral/switches/ps9441/ps9902/vidoe_fundamentals_vxlan.html
Ease of management with Cisco Dynamic Fabric Automation (DFA)
Our customers are also faced with complex, manual network configurations and have a hard time keeping up with application requirements. To solve these challenges, Cisco has developed an architecture called Dynamic Fabric Automation (DFA) which simplifies management and automation – such as automatic device and fabric configuration, automatic VM deployment, migration and seamless integration of bare-metal and virtualized resources in the data center. The Cisco Nexus 5600 platform with DFA implemented in the hardware as well as software is ideal for the multi-tenant and mixed (physical and virtual) cloud infrastructure.
For more information on DFA, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/solutions/ns340/ns517/ns224/ns945/dynamic_fabric_automation.html
True 40G support
The difference between a 40G and True 40G port is that you can push an entire 40G flow in the True 40G port and in the normal 40G port, the port really is divided into 4 10G ports via Etherchannels, Thus in the True 40G, you get full 40G bandwidth. The Cisco Nexus 5600 platform switches has True 40G ports, which help in servicing the full 40G flows.
The Big Picture
Cisco has one of the most comprehensive portfolios for the Data Center and Cloud Networking and this Nexus 5600 platform is but one of the pieces of this portfolio. You may want to read this excellent blog, which explains Cisco’s Data Center and Cloud Networking portfolio.
Tags: Cisco DFA, Cisco Nexus 5600, DCNM, Nexus 5000, Nexus 5600, Nexus 56128P, Nexus 5672UP, Nexus 6000, NX-OS, switch, Unified Fabric, Unified Ports, virtualization, VXLAN
You probably have already heard that during CiscoLive Milan, we have unveiled the new additions to our Data Center and Cloud networking portfolio:
- New Nexus 7706 and a high density F3 Series 1/10G module for Nexus 7700 provide increased deployment options for data center interconnect, core or aggregation.
- The next generation Nexus 5600 family offers VXLAN bridging and routing capability, line rate L2/L3, and 40G uplinks, to deliver high performance in a compact form factor for 10G Top of Rack, 1/10G FEX aggregation deployments.
- New Nexus 6004 Unified Port LEM Module brings industry’s highest UP port density in a four RU form factor simplifying LAN and SAN convergence.
- New Nexus 3172TQ top of rack 1 RU switch delivers industry-first 1/10G BaseT copper server access and superb performance combined with robust NX-OS features.
- New Nexus 1000V on the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) hypervisor brings OpenStack cloud a fully integrated network virtualization solution that can be deployed consistently across VMware, Microsoft, and Linux based software platforms.
AND THERE HAS BEEN BROAD CUSTOMER ADOPTION ACROSS THE DATA CENTER!
From Nexus 1000V to the Nexus 9000, Cisco’s holistic approach resonates with customers because it provides increased business agility, operational efficiency, and empowers IT to rapidly evolve as business requirements change.
Here are the latest examples of why our customers chose Nexus:
Read More »
Tags: Cisco, Cisco DFA, Cisco Dynamic Fabric Automation, cloud, Cloud Computing, data center, DCNM, F3 Modules, FabricPath, KVM, LISP, nexus, Nexus 1000v, Nexus 3000, Nexus 3100, Nexus 5000, Nexus 5600, Nexus 6000, Nexus 7000, Nexus 7700, NX-OS, OTV, private cloud, switch, Unified Fabric, Unified Ports, virtualization, VXLAN
It’s been a long time coming, it’s true. It was long the #1 request I have gotten when it comes to Cisco’s deployment for Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE): when is UCS going to have “FCoE Northbound?”
Now, at long last, I can confirm that the answer is right now.
I saw the announcement over the weekend, and before I had a chance to even sneeze out a tweet of my own, I was beat to the punch by a few other intrepid UCS fiends. The reaction was one of unadulterated joy and pure, rapturous bliss.
Or something close to that.
In all seriousness, from a storage perspective the one thing that has driven people crazy is the fact that the UCS Fabric Interconnects (FIs) could not continue with convergence upstream. It’s been the #1 question I’ve gotten as a storage Product Manager, and while I’ve long said that FCoE is not the panacea for the Data Center, I believe this goes a long way in making converged network even more realistic in today’s environments. Read More »
Tags: Multihop FCoE, Nexus 5000, Nexus 7000, UCS
For those of you wondering about the impact to Cisco of Software Defined Networking and the combined SDN strategy of VMware and Nicira, I point you to a very rational and well-articulated article by Mike Fratto of Network Computing, that basically says Cisco doesn’t have much to worry about. (Enterprise Strategy Group had already said something similar, by the way).
Specifically, Fratto says:
The lack of programmability in existing networking hardware is certainly a problem, but VMware’s acquisition of Nicira does not mean that Cisco and its ilk will be marginalized… It does mean the role and management of the physical network is changing, and I think Cisco is further ahead than most of its competitors in creating a vision for the next phase of networking.
I couldn’t agree more. Since Cisco live! when we announced our Cisco ONE strategy for network programmability as well as the advances in our Nexus 1000V portfolio for virtual network overlays, I have been posting on many of the same points.
My take here was that the VMware-Nicira acquisition did not portend a strategic break with Cisco, and while there are some obvious overlaps in our product lines, there are still a number of areas of collaboration, cooperation and interoperability. The virtual network infrastructure is just one piece of a larger software stack and the differentiation will likely be decided in the orchestration, management and applications built on top of the newly programmable infrastructures sometime down the road. Read More »
Tags: Cisco ONE, Cisco Open Network Environment, FabricPath, LISP, Nexus 1000v, Nexus 5000, Nexus 7000, Nicira, OpenStack, OTV, SDN, software defined networking, virtual network overlays, VMware, vPath, VXLAN