Open Industry Network Performance & Power Test for Cloud Networks Evaluating 10/40 GbE Switches

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February 12th, 2014

By Lippis Enterprises

Now available, the latest independent industry Lippis/Ixia tests of data center switches. In this report, the following products are tested and compared for performance and power consumption:

Alcatel-Lucent OmniSwitch 10K
Alcatel-Lucent OmniSwitch 6900-40X
Arista 7504 Series Data Center Switch
Arista 7124SX 10G SFP Data Center Switch
Arista 7150S-24 10G SFP Data Center Switch
Arista 7050S-64 10/40G Data Center Switch
IBM RackSwitchTM G8124E
IBM RackSwitchTM G8264 upgraded
IBM RackSwitchTM G8316
Brocade VDXTM 6720-24 Data Center Switch
Brocade VDXTM 6730-32 Data Center Switch
Brocade VDXTM 6740 Data Center Switch
Brocade VDXTM 8770 Data Center Switch
Extreme Networks BlackDiamond X8
Extreme Networks Summit X670V
Dell Force10 S-Series S4810
Juniper Network EX Series EX8200 Ethernet Switch

IBM’s New, Easy-to-Deploy Flex System Communications Module

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February 12th, 2014

By Clabby Analytics

Clabby Analytics published a report, “How Cisco’s UCS Compares to IBM Flex System,” in which we concluded that IBM is out-innovating Cisco when it comes to system and communications subsystem design.

In August 2013, IBM introduced yet another communications innovation with its new Flex System Fabric SI4093 Systems Interconnect Module (SI4093). This serves as a transparent network device that simplifies layer 2 connectivity and helps IT administrators avoid possible loops by eliminating spanning tree and offers the benefits of both a pass-through and a true switch. It is preconfigured and unmanaged, but also provides cable consolidation and chassis-level switching, reducing configuration and management complexity, without giving up the performance of the EN4093R. The primary competitors for the new SI4093 are Cisco and HP. In this white paper, we provide competitive analysis across Cisco, IBM and HP.

IBM Expands Network Portfolio with SDN VE

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October 21st, 2013

By Bob Laliberte, Senior Analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group

As organizations continue to virtualize their environments and build out cloud environments, the requirement for more flexible and agile networks is becoming a priority. One of the more promising network architectures being developed to address these challenges is software-defined networking (SDN). Although this space is still being defined, one aspect of SDN, network virtualization, is gaining mindshare. This technology leverages a virtual switch, controller, and virtualization technology. IBM has just announced its offering in this area, called Software Defined Network for Virtual Environments or SDN VE.

IBM Software-Defined Networking Solutions

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July 8th, 2013

by IBM

This quick two-page paper provides key drivers to SDN and IBM’s SDN plus OpenFlow product road map.

IBM Software Defined Network for Virtual Environments Network Virtualization for the Network You Have

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June 24th, 2013

by IBM

Into a world populated by position papers, statements of direction and technology roadmaps, IBM introduces its latest solution that supports the next major advance in enterprise communications, which is Software Defined Networking (SDN). SDN is a new network paradigm that separates network control logic from the underlying network hardware. IBM is putting it to work with IBM SDN for Virtual Environments (SDN VE), a network overlay solution that supplies a complete implementation framework for network virtualization. In short, SDN VE software supplies a core component of SDN architecture, which is fully deployable for data center expansion. The purpose of this white paper is to provide an overview of the functions and benefits of SDN VE, and outline the steps to implementation.

Intelligent Networking for the Optimized Agile Datacenter

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March 25th, 2013

by IDC Brad Casemore, sponsored by IBM System Networking

As the use of server virtualization has matured, IT organizations are realizing they cannot achieve an optimized and agile datacenter unless the network architecture is designed to support converged systems. Therefore, any approach to converged systems that leaves networking as a secondary consideration will be doomed to failure. Fortunately, the industry has responded with networking products that are integrated with converged systems architectures. These solutions deliver the high performance required for next-generation datacenters. This approach delivers benefits in several areas, including optimization of physical and virtual resources, reduction in ongoing management of virtual machines, increased security, and IT agility. This white paper describes the business and economic advantages of an intelligent datacenter network for converged system applications.

IBM Flex System Fabric Network Strategy

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January 7th, 2013

by IBM System Networking

Complexity has become a roadblock to data center efficiency. In order to have efficient, cost-effective data center operation, IT administrators must integrate and simplify network resources and data center management. The solution to simplifying management, reducing costs, easing complexity and increasing time-to-value lies in addressing all the elements of the system: servers, storage and networking. IBM® Flex System™ provides compute, storage and networking resources in a single environment that is both efficient and easy to manage. IBM PureFlex™ System and IBM PureApplication™ System offer an integrated solution using components from the IBM Flex System portfolio. These components provide advanced networking, storage and virtualization technologies, with flexibility for a variety of workloads.

Building a World-class Data Center Network Based on Open Standards

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November 26th, 2012

by IBM System Networking

Data centers are undergoing a major transition toward a smarter, more dynamic infrastructure. More flexible IT architectures are emerging to address the demands of current business applications and new areas, such as cloud computing, multitenancy, bring your own device (BYOD), big data, and analytics. As part of the dynamic infrastructure trend, the role of data center networks is also changing. It is causing businesses to re-evaluate their current networks, which were never designed to handle modern workloads and applications. IBM’s Open Data Center Interoperable Network or ODIN addresses many of the key problems faced by modern data networks, including automation, integration, and management. Compared to classical Ethernet architectures, ODIN fabrics have several distinguishing benefits, which are discussed in this white paper.

Lippis Report 201: What Comes After Zero Latency Switching?

November 5th, 2012

During mid-September 2012, Arista Networks and Cisco Systems launched what both claimed to be the industry’s lowest latency switches aimed at big data, cloud, Web 2.0 and high frequency trading markets. Both products are Top of Rack (ToR), 10 and 40GbE switches. Arista’s is based upon merchant silicon, while Cisco utilized custom ASIC. Arista’s 7150 Series claims 10 and 40GbE, 350 nanoseconds Layer 2 or 3 forwarding, VXLAN support and what it calls “flexible forwarding.” Cisco’s Nexus 3548 claims 10GbE, 250ns to 190ns Layer 2 or 3 forwarding, and Cisco Algorithm Boost or Algo Boost technology. At 10GbE speeds, a bit is 1/10 of a nanosecond long, so Arista’s 7150 and Cisco’s 3548 switches delay is 3500 and 2500 or 1900 bits, respectively. That is, these products offer processing delays equal to the time it takes a few thousands of bits to traverse a simple metallic or optical wire at 10Gbs! In this Lippis Report, we review Arista’s and Cisco’s new ToR switches and answer the question: what comes after zero latency switching?

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Lippis Report 199: IBM and HP Offer Software-Defined Networking Controllers

October 12th, 2012

It’s been a few months since VMware acquired Nicira and Cisco launched Cisco ONE. But at the sleepy Interop NY show, IBM and HP expanded their SDN portfolios with the addition of SDN controllers. To date, there are just a few firms with controllers, including VMware, Big Switch Networks, Cisco, HP, IBM, NEC and Nebula. VMware put a value on SDN overlay controllers at $1.26B, which peaked the interest of every venture capitalist as well as network executive; so there’s no surprise to see more controllers entering the market. But what’s occurring is that the controller market is segmenting into OpenFlow and Overlay controllers with little to no awareness and/or interoperability between the two control plains. In this Lippis Report Research Note, we examine the new SDN controllers from Cisco, IBM, Big Switch Networks and HP with an analysis of their evolution.

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Moving to an Open Data Center with an Interoperable Network

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September 25th, 2012

Create a flattened, converged, virtualized, standards-based network
by IBM System Networking

An open data center with an interoperable network is a flat, converged, virtualized data center network that is based on open industry standards. Instead of under-utilized devices, multi-tier networks, and complex management environments, the modern data center is characterized by highly utilized servers running multiple VMs, flattened, lower latency networks and automated, integrated management tools. New software-defined network approaches (including overlay networks and OpenFlow standards) greatly simplify the implementation of features such as dynamic workload provisioning, load balancing, and redundant paths for high availability and network reconfiguration. Further, high-bandwidth links between virtualized data center resources may extend across multiple data center locations to provide business continuity and backup/recovery of mission-critical data. A highly virtualized data center offers greater resource utilization and lower costs. This new network infrastructure also simplifies management and addresses network issues such as latency, resilience, and multi-tenant support for public and private cloud environments. By taking advantage of IBM’s Open Interoperable Networking (ODIN) design approach, enterprises can design a cost-effective and manageable data center that fully uses the potential of virtualization, and gives customers the flexibility to migrate to federated data centers, in which computing, storage, and net-work resources may be treated as dynamically provisioned resource pools that can be rapidly partitioned into any desired configuration. To learn more about the ODIN, visit: ibm.com/systems/networking/solutions/odin.html

The Changing Face of Data Centre Networks

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August 14th, 2012

By Quocirca

UK analyst firm, Quocirca, describes why fast and intelligent system networks, such as IBM’s, are of critical importance for the smarter data centre. As networking technology has standardised around Ethernet, the perception has grown that it has also commoditised. However, as technical architectures evolve to keep pace with the impact of virtualisation, cloud computing and high-performance workloads, the needs around networking are also changing. This is driving data centre operators to understand how recent performance advances and standards-based innovations in system networking infrastructures can meet the performance, scalability and agility requirements of today’s data centres.

Lippis Report 196: VMware Bets Heavy on Virtual Overlay Networking with $1.26 B Nicira Acquisition

July 24th, 2012

If it wasn’t clear before July 23rd that the Software-Defined Networking (SDN) controller market resides within a cloud stack, then it’s clear now, thanks to VMware’s $1.26 billion acquisition of Nicira Networks. VMware is building a cloud stack that’s first to recognize the importance of virtualized networking and places a very high value on it. The multiple to Nicira’s revenue is, let’s say, very high. Microsoft, IBM, Citrix, Red Hat and the open stack community have just taken notice and are in the process of evaluating Big Switch Networks, Arista Networks, Embrane, Pluribus, Plexxi, et al. In this Lippis Report Research Note, we explore this exciting turning point in the open networking marketplace.

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OpenFlow and SDN: Optimizing the Network for Greater Performance and User Control

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July 24th, 2012

by Clabby Analytics

This white paper discusses how Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and OpenFlow are changing the way that networks are being designed, utilized, and managed. According to Clabby Analytics, SDN will radically alter the networking market competitive landscape. Thus, companies need to understand these new technologies to meet rising demand for cloud, big data, analytics and virtualization.