Friday, July 16, 2010

Data Center Innovation - No more oversubscription

Oversubscription in a network is not bad, it is healthy. Best practices show that a 1:20 and a 1:4 oversubscription level is acceptable at the user campus and server access, respectively. These are based on theoretical and empiric values, that produce best practices documentations and design guides - for more information go to Cisco's Design Zone for examples on these documents.

The Data Center is getting a lot of attention when it comes to R&D and innovation lately. I'd say it started getting hot again with the new trends in cloud computing and unified "X" (i.e. Unified Fabric, Unified Compute, etc) early 2009. The latest: FabricPath technology to aggregate multiple switches and eliminate oversubscription when needed.

FabricPath is a set of capabilities in the Cisco Nexus platform that combines simplicity of Ethernet with the reliability and scalability of Layer 3 routing.

Using FabricPath you can build highly scalable Layer 2 multipath networks without Spanning Tree Protocol. When deployed across multiple Nexus chassis, FabricPath creates a flat data center switching fabric with high switching capacity, cross-sectional bandwidth, and low predictable latency.

The FabricPath Switching System improves business agility through workload flexibility and delivers operational efficiencies through network simplification, provisioning, and reduced power needs. Such networks are particularly suitable for large virtualization deployments, private clouds, and high-performance computing (HPC) environments.

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