Cisco continues to enhance Data Center 3.0

Cisco continues to enhance Data Center 3.0

Summary: Cisco continues to drive their vision of the datacenter while continuing to upgrade their bread and butter hardware offerings.


With a combination of software and hardware releases Cisco pushes their data center strategy by enhancing support for faster, more efficient datacenters and improvements in support for cloud resources.  The offerings start with Ethernet switches and go all the way through complete bundled datacenter networking solutions.

For those in need of Ethernet switches, Cisco has upgraded their top of the line Catalyst 4948 switch to the 4948E, which upgrades the switching capacity of the box from 136Gb/sec to 176 Gb/sec and adds 4 optional  1/10 GbE uplink ports.  It also has a larger packet buffer and hardware support for IPv6.

With the release of Cisco FabricPath Switching System, Cisco also moves further towards a single-layer network topology by moving the traffic management of Layer 3 down to layer two so that the potential problems of blocked links in large spanning tree networks are removed.

Like any proprietary technology, FabricPath requires the latest and greatest hardware to do its magic; in this case the Cisco NX-OS and FiberPath capable hardware, which comes with a significant price tag, but which will also, according to Ram Velaga, VP of Product Management for Cisco's datacenter solutions, a huge improvement in bandwidth utilization, improved performance due to the reduction in latency, more efficient energy utilization due to fewer devices, and simplified management.

FabricPath is going to be available in I/O modules for the Nexus 7000 chassis and Cisco plans on offering a complete datacenter bundled solution consisting of the software plus six Nexus 7000 chassis with 16 line cards each. Given that the standalone price of the line cards is $25,000; this is not a solution for the faint of heart.  No pricing on the complete bundle has been released at this time.

Topics: Storage, Cisco, Data Centers, Hardware

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  • RE: Cisco continues to enhance Data Center 3.0

    The best thing about Cisco is that there is nothing ever to complain about. They largely do business in a ethical manner and turn out highly reliable and dependable hardware.

    The Data Center market is getting some new competition with extremely high bandwidth devices from several manufactureres. Cisco equipment, when looking at a rack, still exudes confidence to those who are looking at your architecture.

    They are the MS of the network world. There are competitive products but IOS is well....IOS. Learn it once and you can hop in and configure an old L2 2950 or a new 4948E. Their strongest loyalty from network professionals is the OS. Other companies have similar OS functionality but most are just different enough with commands or terminology to make youself ask, "why not just go Cisco" After a journey down the road of SMC switches (nice switch), I am glad I just rebuilt everything again with Cisco!! IOS is bees kneez!!!

    Cisco rocks! I want to work for that company so bad....
    • RE: Cisco continues to enhance Data Center 3.0

      And by "MS of the network world" I am talking about how you can hop into XP, Server 2000, Server 2003, Win7, Server 2008 and basically know how to get around.

      I am not talking about the fact the OS is well....let's just say MS Operating Systems have had a few issues :) since Windows 3.x and 95...

      But they are great at creating an OS on each platform that users can easily do what they need to do..IOS is really no different. Even competitors basically rip Cisco IOS off and make it very similar. I am not comparing the functionality, stability, and security of Cisco to me!!! I use everything but Windows unless needed. But give them credit for keeping a very recognizable OS and building on those basic features..even though a complete redesign should have taken place years ago to address security.