Lippis Report 195: CiscoLive, GigaOm Structure and IBM DOVE, Oh My

July 2nd, 2012

June could not have been a busier month for the networking industry. Cisco launched Cisco ONE, Cloud Connect and Unified Access at CiscoLive. IBM System Networking launched an SDN stack tied into the IBM PureSystems computing platforms of Expert Integrated Systems. And the folks at GigaOm delivered another great Structure conference that brought in cloud thought leaders. In this Lippis Report Research Note, we highlight some of the more significant June of 2012 announcements.

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Building A Smart Virtual Network Infrastructure With IBM

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January 10th, 2012

Renato Recio, IBM Fellow & System Networking CTO

Renato Recio, IBM Fellow & System Networking CTO

There are a growing number of options to make data center networking more flexible. One option is the use of Edge Virtual Bridging or EVB, which has been standardized in project IEEE 802.1Qbg and championed by IBM, HP, Brocade, QLogic, Emulex and many others. This approach extends the Virtual Ethernet Bridge or VEB sometime called Virtual Ethernet Switch (VES) used by hypervisors to connect VMs to the data center network. Renato Recio, IBM Fellow & System Networking CTO joins me to discuss IBM’s approach to virtual network infrastructure overlays and in particular its support for Edge Virtual Bridging.

Cloud-Ready Network Architecture

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December 5th, 2011

By IBM

The cloud model isn’t about transforming IT. It’s about reinventing the way organizations do business. Organizations in every industry, regardless of size or geography, are embracing cloud computing as a way to reduce the complexity and costs associated with traditional IT approaches. Organizations that approach cloud in a tactical fashion risk adding complexity and inefficiency (not to mention security exposure) due to fragmentation, redundancy and operating silos. Conversely, organizations that embrace cloud strategically—from a business as well as IT perspective—can capture new business value through innovation, flexibility, speed, integrity and security—while reducing cost and complexity.

To deliver the cloud’s full business value, cloud-enabled data centers require speed, flexibility, cost-effective operation and scalability. This paper discusses the technical and business requirements of cloud computing, focusing on the networking layer of the cloud.

Fall 2011 Open Industry Network Performance And Power Test Report

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December 5th, 2011

The IT Industry’s Third Open Network Performance and Power Consumption Test
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What We Have Learned From Eighteen Months of Testing

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December 1st, 2011

The Lippis Report has conducted three open industry test of 10 and 40GbE data center fabric switches at Ixia’s iSimCity. Michael Githens of Ixia interviews Nick Lippis of the Lippis Report to look back on what we have learned after testing eleven products from nine vendors including Alcatel-Lucent, Arista Networks, Brocade, Dell/Force10, Extreme Networks, Hitachi Data Systems, IBM, Juniper Networks and Mellanox/Voltaire. We then look forward as to what the industry will be serving up in 2012 for data center fabrics.

Download “Fall 2011 Open Industry Network Performance And Power Test Report” here.

40 Gb and 100 Gb Ethernet

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November 7th, 2011

Just as 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) is going through widespread
deployment in the data center, the discussion has now shifted to even
higher speed interconnects—namely 40 GbE and 100 GbE
By IBM

In July 2006, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Higher Speed Study Group was formed to look into the next evolutionary step after 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE). In the past, Ethernet speeds would increase by a factor of 10. However, the next generation jump from 10 GbE to 100 GbE has proven to be a technological challenge. Some within the IEEE group felt that 100 GbE made sense for communication service providers and other backbone network providers, but not as a next step for servers—it was simply more speed and expense than would be needed for the near future. While the IEEE initially planned to standardize only on 100 GbE as the next step after 10 GbE, server vendors initiated a push in early 2007 to include 40 GbE in the standard, with the rationale that the effort used to develop 40 GbE would be used for the development of 100 GbE.

In July 2007, the IEEE 802.3ba study group was named, and it is the first standard to include two different Ethernet speeds—the 40 Gbps rate for local server applications, and the 100 Gbps rate for internet backbone—to serve both market needs. In June 2010, the official 802.3ba standard was ratified, opening the field to higher performance in server systems and components, data centers, network storage and systems, high-performance computing (HPC) clusters, data centers, carriers, and the like. This paper provides perspective on the placement and use of 40 and 100GbE.

VMready: Virtual Machine-aware Networking

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September 26th, 2011

By IBM

Data centers are undergoing monumental paradigm shifts. As demand for greater processing continues to outstrip available floor space, rack space, power and air-conditioning, the market has turned to virtualization to use the resources available efficiently. Most networking switches are not aware of VMs. This creates security and availability issues for both server and network administrators as they try to exploit the value of virtualization and manage this new environment. IBM® System Networking offers VMready®, switches. Find out how these switches solve the most difficult VM mobility and visibility problems.

Who Wins? The Benefits of Convergence to Ethernet for Storage Advances in Data Center Bridging and FCoE Improve Ethernet Performance for iSCSI and HPC Clusters

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September 12th, 2011

By IBM

Use of Ethernet as a switching fabric provides servers with a single connection and can greatly reduce the amount of equipment required in the data center. Companies with storage networks are switching from Fiber Channel to Ethernet-based storage solutions that use 10GbE. This trend is accelerating now with lossless DCB or Data Center Bridging Ethernet products such as IBM BNT RackSwitch G8124. With the adoption of the new DCB Ethernet protocols, Ethernet switching fabric can offer the technical features and the economic value necessary to become the switching fabric of choice for data center networking, storage and clustering. Find out how by downloading this white paper.

Managing Virtualized Storage Environments with IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center

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August 8th, 2011

By IBM

This white paper provides a summary of how IBM® Tivoli®
Storage Productivity Center supports the IBM System Storage®
SAN Volume Controller. This information is intended to describe
the management capabilities of Tivoli Storage Productivity Center
in a virtualized storage configuration.

The EssentialCIO Insights from the Global Chief Information Officer Study

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July 11th, 2011

By IBM

How are technology leaders helping their organizations adapt to the accelerating change and complexity that mark today’s competitive and
economic landscape? To find out, we spoke in person with 3,018 CIOs, spanning 71 countries and 18 industries. They shared how they are innovating with technology for organizational success. CIOs increasingly help their organizations cope with complexity by simplifying operations, business processes, products and services. To increase competitiveness, 83 percent of CIOs have visionary plans that include business intelligence and analytics, followed by mobility solutions (74 percent) and virtualization (68 percent). Since our 2009 Global CIO Study, cloud computing shot up in priority, selected by 45 percent more CIOs than before and leaping into a tie for fourth place with business process management (60 percent each). In this report, CIOs provide you insight in to both their challenges and opportunities from increasing complexity.

IBM Expands System Networking Offering

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June 20th, 2011

IBM’s System Networking is focused upon creating an interconnect fabric/System Network within data centers upon which servers and storage rely upon to deliver IT applications. IBM recently formed IBM System Networking that includes BNT along with partnerships of Cisco Brocade, Juniper and Mellanox plus its management solutions of Tivoli. Vikram Mehta, Vice President IBM System Networking is my guest as we discuss IBM’s expanding role in System Networking.

IBM Expands System Networking Offering

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June 20th, 2011

IBM’s System Networking is focused upon creating an interconnect fabric/System Network within data centers upon which servers and storage rely upon to deliver IT applications. IBM recently formed IBM System Networking that includes BNT along with partnerships of Cisco, Brocade, Juniper and Mellanox plus its management solutions of Tivoli. Vikram Mehta, Vice President, IBM System Networking, is my guest as we discuss IBM’s expanding role in System Networking.

A Low-Latency Solution for High- Frequency Trading from IBM and Mellanox

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June 7th, 2011

In the world of High-Frequency Trading (HFT), opportunities exist only fleetingly and therefore trading solutions must run at the lowest latency to be competitive. Low-latency 10 Gigabit Ethernet has become the interconnect of choice for HFT solutions. IBM® and Mellanox® have demonstrated a solution that performs at high throughput rates and low latency to facilitate High-Frequency Trading solutions.

Lippis Report 172: A Perfect Storm Clears a Path for IBM to Re-Enter the Network Market

May 24th, 2011

Three strong trends are taking shape that are so powerful they threaten the status quo of the networking industry. These trends are more like storms than new markets; in fact they represent a major industry discontinuity. The first storm is happening now and is represented by merchant silicon for 10 and 40 GbE chips lowering the barrier of entry for new entrants in the Ethernet switch market. The second storm is much weaker but promises to be just as big, or bigger, than the first. This second storm is the creation of a software ecosystem in the networking industry, thanks to initiatives such as Software Defined Networks (SDN), OpenFlow, Arista Network’s EOS Central, etc. The third storm is the paradigm shift in enterprise IT spending thanks to mobile and cloud computing. These three storms are starting to interact and feed upon each other, forming a perfect storm in the networking industry. The perfect storm is already doing damage, as all major IT firms position product portfolios to navigate through it and prepare for its aftermath of making existing networking legacy.

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