How can I merge SAN fabrics with SAN switches from different vendors?
My firm has recently merged with another and both infrastructures have
storage-area networks (SANs) from the same vendor. But the fabrics of each are built using switches
from different manufacturers. What issues are likely to arise when merging the two?
As far as the switches, there shouldn't be any major issues with merging fabrics
to an expanded SAN due to
the Fabric Shortest Path First
(FSFP) routing protocol. FSFP was created in 1997 by Brocade Communications Inc., and the protocol
has since been adopted as the routing standard between Fibre Channel (FC) switches within a SAN
To further ensure a successful merge, confirm that the following prerequisites have been
- Check for conflicting named zones and rename them if required
- Ensure that there's interoperability between the firmware and protocol versions on each switch,
and perform updates to these if necessary. Some switches may also require an additional hardware
module to make this functionality available.
This was first published in October 2009