Lippis Report 151: A Two or Three Tier High-End Data Center Ethernet Fabric Architecture?

June 30th, 2010

nicklippis.jpgIt hasn’t been since the mid 1990s that the networking industry was focused on multi-protocol integration or convergence. The industry is gearing up for a major innovation and competitive cycle fueled by the multi-billion dollar addressable market for data center network fabrics. Over the last eighteen months, every major Ethernet infrastructure provider has been talking about two and three tier network fabrics for high-end data centers. Companies such as Cisco, Arista Networks, HP/3Com, Force10, Voltaire, Extreme, Brocade, Juniper et al have announced network fabrics for data centers with five thousand and more servers with and without storage enablement. Juniper talks of a one-tier fabric through their Project Stratus work with IBM to be available some time in the future. Brocade recently introduced its’ Brocade One, which is a converged data center fabric. Cisco just launched its’ FabricPath Switching System or FSS for the Nexus 7000 that enables massive scale of a two-tier fabric. In this Lippis Report Research Note, we review the architectural attributes of two and three tier network fabrics and review FSS and its accompanying F-Series 10GbE module.

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Leading the Way to Borderless Networks

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June 30th, 2010

By Cisco Systems

We work, live, play, and learn in a world that has no boundaries and knows no borders. We expect to connect to anyone, anywhere, using any device, to any resource—securely, reliably, transparently. That is the promise of borderless networks. To fully deliver on this promise, Cisco is advancing along three critical fronts: workplace transformation, technology leadership, and operational excellence.

Building Mission-Critical Data Center

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June 30th, 2010

By HP

The traditional three-tier model of access, aggregation, and core switching has turned into an operational nightmare. With a variety of technologies, protocols, and management at each tier, the complexity of a legacy network can create significant management challenges for IT managers. Older-generation switches may be closed, rigid, and monolithic, incapable of the agility so vital to today’s business operations. With FlexFabric as the blueprint for an efficient, highly integrated and secure data center network, HP converged infrastructure solutions streamline the design of next-generation data centers to ensure the superior resiliency, performance, and agility that enterprise networks now require.

Find out how by downloading this HP white paper:

A Modern Approach To FAX Management Via Unified Communications

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June 30th, 2010

Bob WoodUnified communications is becoming an integration point for traditional dial tone, FAX, video and messaging as it adds increased access and functionality to these important forms of communications. Sagemcom is by far the industry leader in IP FAX, having successfully integrated FAX capability into Cisco, Avaya, Alcatel-Lucent and Microsoft’s UC platforms.  Its’ XmediusFAX has proven to reduced cost, increase access and security of FAX communications.  In this Lippis Report podcast, I talk with Bob Wood, Executive Director at Sagemcom, about how FAX communications can be integrated into the UC platform of your choice and the business outcomes it delivers.

Lippis Report 150: What is the Motivation Behind The Unified Communications Interoperability Forum?

June 14th, 2010

nicklippis.jpgIn mid May of this year HP, Juniper Networks, Microsoft, Logitech / LifeSize and Polycom established a forum to develop a set of interoperability test methodologies and certification programs along with specifications and guidelines that enable mixed vendor Unified Communications UC solutions to work with each other. In short, the UC Interoperability Forum or UCIF is trying to define what it means for multi-vendor UC implementations to interoperate. Since its establishment, membership has grown by thirteen vendors, but blaringly obvious is the omission of Cisco, Avaya, Mitel, ShoreTel and other major UC providers. This begs the question of motivation. Is the UCIF interested in interoperability or changing the market landscape to gain advantage on the established leaders? In this Lippis Report Research Note we explore this question.

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SIP-O-Nomics Saving Money and Simplifying Architecture with the Session Initiation Protocol

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June 14th, 2010

By Irwin Lazar Vice President, Communications Research, Nemertes Research

SIP, the Session Initiation Protocol, offers the potential to reduce telecom operational cost and complexity, take advantage of new hosted services, and integrate disparate applications via unified communications to improve collaboration. The introduction of SIP session management offers the potential to simplify communications system and policy management by fundamentally rethinking the way organizations deploy and integrate disparate communications applications.

But implementing SIP is not without challenges. IT architects must leverage solid ROI case studies to build tangible business cases to justify investment. They must also address training and interoperability concerns to ensure a successful deployment. Those organizations that meet these challenges stand to reap the benefits of SIP via delivery of new services and/or reduced operating costs.

Find out how to use SIP by downloading this white paper.

A Rational Storage Strategy: To Unify or Not to Unify

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June 14th, 2010

By Arista Networks

Arista Networks views storage networking as a key horizontal technology in the data center and an important area of focus because of the architectural disruption that has started, but is far from finished. This white paper reviews all the major storage networking technologies and provides Arista’s view of a Unified Storage Strategy.

Find out what Arista thinks about Unified Storage Strategy by downloading this paper.

IPv6 First Hop Security: Protecting Your IPv6 Access Network

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June 14th, 2010

By Cisco Systems

This paper provides a brief introduction to common security threats on IPv6 campus access networks and will explain the value of using First Hop Security (FHS) technology in mitigating these threats. An overview of the operational principle of FHS is provided together with some examples on how to enable FHS on Catalyst® 6500, 4500, and 3750 Series Switches. The target audience for this paper are network architects and network operation engineers.

Find out about FHS by downloading this Cisco whitepaper.

Siemens Changes UC Market with OpenScape UC Server 2010

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June 14th, 2010

Kathy HeilmannThe Unified Communications (UC) market is changing significantly in terms of how solutions are deployed, services are packaged and systems procured. Siemens addressed all of these areas in one fell swoop with the recently released OpenScape UC Server 2010. Siemens announced new licensing options for endpoints and integrated UC endpoint services in packaged solutions including social media plug-ins such as Twitter. Kathy Heilmann, Director, Large Enterprise Voice and UC Solutions Marketing at Siemens Enterprise Communications joined me to talk about the new rules of UC procurement and its value to IT business leaders.

Making Networks More Agile With Force10’s Open Automation

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June 14th, 2010

stephengNetworking has become “rigid”. Yes, I know it’s almost absurd to attribute inflexibility or rigidity to networking, but we are in a compute innovation cycle that’s driving a fundamental change in networking, which screams out the need for more flexibility and configuration automation. The well understood problem is that when a virtualized machine is moved from one physical machine to another, the network, load balancers, firewalls/IPS, broadcast domains, etc., have to be reconfigured. There is no automation in place, meaning that the network is not flexible or agile enough to make the changes required. Networking companies such as Force10 Networks are driving an open approach to automation to enable network changes. I spoke with Steve Garrison, Vice President Marketing for Force10 Networks about their “Open Automation” approach to networking. Enjoy, Nick