Sunday, March 27, 2011

Cisco Updates its Data Center Portfolio

Cisco rolled out a series of updates and enhancements across its Data Center Business Advantage portfolio, including the Cisco Nexus 7000 family and Nexus 5000 Series, the new ultra-low latency platform Cisco Nexus 3000, Cisco MDS storage switches, the Cisco Unified Computing System, the Cisco Data Center Network Manager, and Cisco NX-OS, the comprehensive data center operating system that spans the Cisco data center portfolio.

Cisco said its vision continues to be on the tight integration of its Unified Fabric, Unified Computing, and Unified Network Services into a holistic data center fabric. The goal is "wire once", allowing multiple data centers and cloud services to be connected across a common intelligent fabric.

Some highlights:

New Cisco Nexus 5548UP, Nexus 5596UP switches -- Unified Port (UP) capability on all ports for these 48- and 96-port data center switches enable information technology managers to designate any port to be 1 Gigabit Ethernet, 10 Gigabit Ethernet, Fibre Channel (2/4/8 gigabits) or Fibre Channel over Ethernet. These switches support Layer 2/3, provide support for IEEE 802.1Qbh, and are FabricPath-ready.

New Cisco Nexus 3000 Series Switches -- offering low latency (less than 1usec port to port), in a high-density 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch for specific markets, such as high-frequency trading applications, where low latency is the No. 1 requirement. The one-rack-unit switch supports Layer 2/3 wire-rate switching and a wide range of routing protocols within the Cisco NX-OS operating system.

Fabric Extender Technology (FEX) -- enables customers to build a single, modular fabric that extends from Cisco Nexus switches to Cisco Unified Computing System servers to adapters and to virtual machines. The design flexibility, reduced cabling infrastructure, and simplified management have resulted in equipment and operational savings of up to 50 percent for the more than 5,000 customers who have deployed the Cisco FEX architecture. Today Cisco introduced three additions to its fabric extension portfolio, all based on the IEEE 802.1Qbh emerging standard: Adapter FEX, VM-FEX (virtual machine) and FEX Support for Nexus 7000.

Director-Class Multi-hop Fibre Channel over Ethernet -- Cisco is introducing end-to-end data center convergence from server to storage by delivering new director-class, multi-hop Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) capability for the Nexus 7000 data center switch platform and the MDS 9500 storage switching platform, adding to existing FCoE functionality on the Nexus 5000 switch platform. Cisco provides Unified Fabric support to both the access and core network layers, supporting all storage traffic (Fibre Channel, FCoE, iSCSI, and NAS) over simplified infrastructure based on lossless 10-Gigabit Ethernet.

End-to-End Management With Cisco Data Center Network Manager -- enables SAN, LAN, and server teams to cohesively manage converged end-to-end data center networks up to 150,000 ports, and offers tight integration with VMware vCenter for provisioning, performance, and trouble-shooting.

Scaling the Internet and Enabling Cloud Services with LISP and MPLS on the Nexus 700 -- The Nexus 7000 supports MPLS for Layer 3 VPNs to help enable a highly secure, cloud-ready network infrastructure, and an industry first: Location/ID Separation Protocol. LISP is an IP routing and addressing architecture initiated by Cisco. IT managers can take advantage of LISP to enable highly agile networks for workload mobility; cloud enablement; the transition to IPv6; and scalable multi-tenancy.

Additions for the Cisco Catalyst 6500 series -- including a new Application Control Engine ACE30 module for dynamic workload scaling with Cisco Overlay Transport Virtualization which provides 54 percent higher performance for application delivery; a new ES40 module with 40 gigabit line-rate performance for high-performance Data Center Interconnect, and a new ASA Service module offering embedded firewall and security services.

New MDS 9000 Storage Media Encryption fabric service -- offers highly secure media encryption for disks as well as tapes to meet security requirements for regulatory compliance, and requires no SAN reconfiguration.

Nexus 1010 provides an NX-OS based appliance platform for hosting virtual services -- this platform now supports two additional services: the Cisco Virtual Security Gateway which provides VM-level segmentation in a multi-tenant virtualized data center, and the Cisco Data Center Network Management Center.

Cisco noted that it now has more than 4,000 Unified Computing System (UCS) customers.


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