Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Brocade Unveils its "One" Architecture for Virtualized Data Centers

At a press and industry analyst event in NYC, Brocade outlined its vision for unifying network architecture and simplifying the virtualization of enterprise applications.

The strategy centers on removing network layers, simplifying management and protecting existing technology investments as enterprises migrate to cloud architectures.

In the data center, Brocade shares a common industry view that IT infrastructures will eventually evolve to a highly virtualized, services-on-demand state enabled through the cloud.

Brocade is developing a Virtual Cluster Switching (VCS) technology as the core technology for building large, high-performance and flat Layer 2 data center fabrics to better support the increased adoption of server virtualization. VCS is built on Data Center Bridging (DCB) technologies to meet the increased network reliability and performance requirements as customers deploy more VMs. The VCS technology would eliminate the need for Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) and would simplify the data center fabric by treating a cluster as a single logical chassis.

Brocade VCS would act as masterless and distributed control plane, providing continuous synchronization of state, status and configuration information -- such as virtual machine (VM) meta-data, network and storage policies -- between member nodes to enable converged fabrics to be self-forming, auto-healing and self-configuring.

Another key technology in Brocade VCS is the emerging IETF standard Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links (TRILL) that will provide a more efficient way of moving data throughout converged fabrics. This includes automatically determining the shortest path between routes.

The Brocade One architecture also calls for a new logical layer between Brocade converged fabric and server virtualization hypervisors. This would help ensure a consistent interface and set of services for virtual machines (VMs) connected to the network. The company said its Brocade Virtual Access Layer would be vendor-agnostic and support all major hypervisors by utilizing industry-standard technologies, including the emerging Virtual Ethernet Port Aggregator (VEPA) and Virtual Ethernet Bridging (VEB) standards.

To enable this Brocade One architecture, the company will offer a comprehensive suite of solutions in support of converged fabrics and Ethernet networking that includes:

  • A new converged fabric switch, converged fabric operating system and converged fabric management tools.

  • New channel partner specialization for partners offering the new converged fabric solutions as part of their portfolio.

  • New support and professional consulting services offering for converged fabric solutions, Brocade Converged Fabric Services, from Brocade Global Services.

  • New diagnostic and assessment utility, called Brocade NET Health™, which will help customers gauge the efficiency of their networks and measure them against industry best practices.

  • New training and certification program designed to educate Brocade customers and partners on the new converged fabric technologies.

"Driven by the growth of server virtualization, continued growth of data and the proliferation of devices connected to the network, the networking industry is on the cusp of a major innovation cycle," said Mike Klayko, CEO of Brocade. "Virtualized data centers will enable the realization of cloud architectures where services and applications can be delivered on-demand and at much greater speeds than is possible today."http://www.brocade.com