Continuing the blog series (Part-I) on the production deployment designs and the real-world benefits of Multi-Hop FCoE infrastructure, this blog features University of Siegen, based in Germany.
Before delving into the details, a bit of background – The University of Siegen is a modern educational institution with a strong international profile. Its 17,500 students and 1700 staff are based in eight locations around the town of Siegen in Germany, although more than 11 percent of students come from other countries. The BYOD, e-learning initiatives and other research applications were putting the university’s IT environment under pressure. So, the University was looking to optimize IT services for educational and operational efficiency and as well to introduce the latest technology for future-proofing their Data Center.
Using the Cisco “wire-once, enable anywhere” design philosophy, the University connected the old storage environment, which is based on Fibre Channel, with the new FCoE domain. Cisco UCS server is connected to the Director-Class Cisco Nexus 7000 platform, which in turn is connected via Multi-hop FCoE to Cisco MDS 9000 SAN Director. The newer FCoE Storage array is connected directly to Nexus 7000 for the End-to-End FCoE connectivity.
The benefits to using Cisco Unified Fabric infrastructure were quite significant Read More »
Tags: Cisco Unified Fabric, convergence, FCoE, Multihop, Storage
Last week I had the rare pleasure of being able to attend a storage conference (rare in the sense that I usually am one of the speakers, rather than one of the attendees). It was SNIA’s Storage Developer’s Conference, and like most events there were both things that were interesting and worthwhile, and things that left something to be desired.
The lasting impression that I walked away with, however, was something that went beyond any one particular conversation, presentation, or technology. Indeed, the thoughts that have been rattling around in my brain for the past week made me realize that, if we (those of us in the industry) aren’t careful, the future looks extremely convoluted and confusing. At worst we may actually wind up mismatching solutions to problems, taking giant steps backwards, locking us into a perpetual game of ‘catch-up’ as we struggle to accomplish what we can do today using traditional storage methodology and equipment Read More »
Tags: software defined storage, Storage
While FCoE technology has been standardized for quite some time now, most FCoE deployments have been upto the access layer of the network. Multi-hop FCoE deployments are gaining traction increasingly. Many a times, I get asked to share the production deployment designs and the real-world benefits of Multi-Hop FCoE infrastructure. So, in this series of blogs, I plan to share the same. In this blog, the spotlight is on a division of the world’s largest aerospace company, Boeing Defense, Space, and Security (BDS).
BDS provides end-to-end services for large-scale systems and supports a diverse range of customers, including the U.S. Army, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). When the global recession hit the aerospace industry in 2010, BDS came under extreme pressure to cut costs. Dual network topologies, both FC and IP, were adding complexity to the network. BDS needed to reduce the TCO and at the same time increase the network agility, improve scalability and maintain highest availability possible.
As a result, the company decided to adopt FCoE to consolidate its IP and SAN data traffic on a single network. Since 2010, BDS has extended its use of FCoE and is now 100 percent Multi-hop FCoE. BDS deployed End-to-End FCoE architecture with Nexus 5000 at the access layer, the Director-class Nexus 7000 at the Core, connected to the FCoE Storage Arrays.
For BDS, the shift to the new Cisco Unified Fabric infrastructure and leveraging FCoE has delivered unparalleled value to the organization. Read More »
Tags: Cisco Unified Fabric, convergence, data center, FCoE, Multihop, Storage
In the past articles we’ve talked about doing distance extension for SANs, focusing first on building the physical elements that are required, before moving on to how Fibre Channel can be extended using buffer credits.
In this article we’re going to talk about how it is best to think of extending Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) SANs (finally!).
I know, I know, I start off this whole shebang by saying I’m going to talk about FCoE and distance, and it takes me this long to get to it? Sheesh! Read More »
Tags: distance, FCoE, Fibre Channel, Storage
In the previous article we looked at some of the physical characteristics of building a SAN extension. In other words, we looked at the different ways there are to “build the pipe.” We didn’t, however, get the chance to talk about the speed or capacity of the pipes, nor did we talk about the various methods to fill the pipe with SAN data.
In this article, we’re going to look at the first of four specific methods of how we can extend SANs across distances using those pipes: “Native” Fibre Channel (FC). Understanding how FC works becomes critical for understanding how distance solutions are resolved using the technology, and that in turn leads us to understand how something like Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) differs.
Afterwards, we’ll take a brief look at how the pieces fit together and are part of the process for building a strong solution. Read More »
Tags: distance, FC, FCoE, Fibre Channel, Storage