Video: Arista Networks and technology talk

While at SNW Europe I had the opportunity to visit the Arista Networks booth with my video camera in hand, and the guys on booth duty were good enough to allow me to shoot some footage while we talked about their products.Enjoy the video and then feel free to comment on my thoughts below - First up, Arista is start-up networking company, and like all networking companies…….. they have Cisco in their crosshairs. Although low cost seems to be their trump card, to be fair to Arista they are also touting performance as another key advantage. …

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Video: Virtual Fabric for IBM BladeCenter

The below video is something I shot yesterday while at Storage Networking Europe in Frankfurt Germany.  In the video, William Lloyd Scull Senior Network Architect at BLADE Network Technologies, demos a feature of the IBM BladeCenter Virtual Fabric (comprised of Emulex OneConnect UCNA, BLADE Network Technologies Blade Switches and IBM BladeCenter hardware).In the video William dynamically reduces network bandwidth allocated to a vSwitch from 2500Mbps down to 1900Mbps, as well as talks us through some of the other features and some of the hardware involved in the Virtual Fabric solution.Its an interesting video if you want quick and…

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Emulex UCNA at SNW Europe

Today I attended the Emulex launch of their OnceConnect Universal Converged Network Adapter (UCNA) at SNW Europe, and I liked what I saw.Most will know by now that Im all for converged Ethernet unified fabrics.  Still, Im well aware that some of the vendor offerings are very “Generation 1” and have that version 1.0 feel to them.  Todays launch from Emulex honestly didn’t have that feel to it.  In fact it seems that the products shipping around CEE are getting more and more mature by the day.  So let me take a few minutes to discuss some…

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CEE the future

Wherever you look these days there’s no shortage of talk about FCoE.  However, sometimes I think a little too much attention is given to FCoE and people sometimes overlook the underlying DCB/CEE Enhanced Ethernet – In my opinion, this where much of the real work and enabling is happening.  So lets spend a couple of minutes talking about CEE......NOTE: Im using the term CEE. I should probably use DCB, but Im not.  For disambiguation of the interchangeable terms CEE, DCB and DCE see here.    Half bakedFirst up, and in the spirit of honesty, I have to mention that…

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FCoE: Framing deep dive

My current series of posts on FCoE and CEE have generated a lot of questions and feedback via the comments section and on Twitter.  In this post I will attempt to address some of the questions and misunderstandings – especially around encapsulation and framing efficiency……I received a comment on the site today from a confused reader.  The point of confusion is a common one and not something to be embarrassed about.  Part of the comment read as follows “…..but it’s [FCoE] problem is that it consists of 3 different protocols (IP, FC, SCSI) just enlarging it’s frame size…

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Why HP should buy Brocade

One of the rumours doing the rounds today is that Brocade are apparently up for sale or at least considering the possibility - I stress at the moment of writing this that it is pure speculation.  Clearly rumours like this must be taken with a bucket of salt and are often either blatantly untrue and sometimes calculated in their nature.Anyway, the interesting thing from my point of view is that it was just last week that I cheekily said to somebody at HP, via email, that I thought HP should buy Brocade.  So with the current rumour in mind…

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FCoE: Unovering the CNA - Deep Dive

Continuing with my current theme of Fibre Channel over Ethernet, and at the request of several people, this post will take a close look at Converged Network Adapters (CNA). Now then, there is no easy way to put this, but to do justice to a topic like this will require a lot of words.  I’ll do my best to keep it succinct, but if you are looking for a high level overview in under 1,000 words then this is probably for you, but thanks for stopping by………  However, if you want a deep dive and opportunity for technical…

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FC: recapping FC flow control

Amid all the discussion of FCoE and the many requests to cover more aspects and underlying technologies, I thought it probably a good idea to take a step back for a moment and recap flow control in native FC networks.  After all, FCoE is almost a transplant of FCP onto Ethernet.Granted, to some people this will be teling you how to suck eggs, but for others clearly not!  So………. native FC Class 3 networks achieve reliable frame delivery/lossless behaviour through the use of a link layer flow control mechanism called buffer-to-buffer credits (aka BB_Credits)  NOTE:  Class 3,…

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