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16Feb/12Off

30 billion packets per second

TechOps Guy: Nate

Still really busy getting ready to move out of the cloud. Ran into a networking issue today noticed my 10GbE NICs are going up and down pretty often. Contacted HP and apparently these Qlogic 10GbE NICs have overheating issues and the thing that has fixed it for other customers is to set the bios to increased cooling, basically ramp up those RPMs (as well as a firmware update, which is already applied) Our systems may have more issues given that each server has two of these NICs right on top of each other. So maybe we need to split them apart, waiting to see what support says. There haven't been any noticeable issues with the link failures since everything is redundant across both NICs (both NIC ports on the same card seem to go down at about the same time).

Anyways, you know I've been talking about it a lot here, and it's finally arrived (well a few days ago), the Black Diamond X-Series (self proclaimed world's largest cloud switch). Officially announced almost a year ago, their marketing folks certainly liked to grab the headlines early. They did the same thing with their first 24-port 10GbE stackable switch.

The numbers on this thing are just staggering, I mean 30 billion packets per second, a choice of either switching fabric based on 2.5Tbps (meaning up to 10Tbps in the switch), or 5.1Tbps (with up to 20Tbps in the switch). They are offering both 48x10GbE line cards as well 12 and 24x40GbE line cards (all line rate, duh). You already know it has up to 192x40GbE or 768x10GbE(via breakout cables) in a 14U footprint - half the size of the competition which was already claiming to be a fraction of the size of their other competition.

5Tbps Switching fabric module (max 4 per switch)

 

Power rated at 5.5 watts per 10GbE port or 22W per 40GbE port.

They are still pushing their Direct Attach approach, support for which still hasn't exactly caught on in the industry. I didn't really want Direct Attach but I can see the value in it. They apparently have a solution for KVM ready to go, though their partner in crime that supported VMware abandoned the 10GbE market a while ago (it required special NIC hardware/drivers for VMware). I'm not aware of anyone that has replaced that functionality from another manufacturer.

I found it kind of curious they rev'd their Operating system 3 major versions for this product. (from version 12 to 15). They did something similar when they re-wrote their OS about a decade ago (jumped from version 7 to 10).

Anyways not much else to write about, I do plan to write more on the cloud soon just been so busy recently - this is just a quick post / random thought.

So the clock starts - how long until someone else comes out with a midplane-less chassis design ?