Feature

IP storage switch and router specifications

IP storage networks have emerged as a versatile and inexpensive alternative to traditional Fibre Channel SANs, and IP SAN deployments -- primarily iSCSI -- are appearing in businesses of all sizes. iSCSI offers good speed and reliability, and can transport storage data across the Internet. IP SANs rely on IP storage switches and routers to segment storage traffic and keep it isolated from everyday user traffic. Today's IP switches and routers even offer advanced features like compression, acceleration, clustering, failover, and multipathing; optimising WAN bandwidth and maintaining IP SAN availability in the event of hardware problems. The product snapshots in this chapter highlight key specifications for a cross section of popular IP storage switch and router products. The following products were selected based on input from industry analysts and SearchStorage.com editors, and specifications are current as of March 2007.

The following specifications have been provided by vendors and are periodically updated. Vendors are welcome to submit their updates and new product specifications to sbigelow@techtarget.com.

Go to the first product snapshot, or select the desired product below:

  • Brocade Communications Systems Inc.; FC4-16IP Blade for 48000 Director
  • Brocade Communications Systems Inc.; Brocade iSCSI Gateway
  • Cisco Systems Inc.; 9216A and 9216i Multilayer Fabric Switches
  • Cisco Systems Inc.; Linecard - IPS8
  • Cisco Systems Inc.; Linecard - MPS-14/2
  • Emulex Corp.; Model 725 iSCSI Storage Router
  • Emulex Corp.; Model 735 FCIP Storage Router
  • Hewlett-Packard Co.; StorageWorks 400 Multi-Protocol Router
  • SANRAD Inc.; V-Switch 3800 Enterprise iSCSI Switch

    Woven Systems Inc.; EFS-1000 10GigE IP fabric switch Return to the beginning

    Product Snapshot #1
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    Product: Brocade Communications Systems Inc.; FC4-16IP Blade for 48000 Director

    Fibre Channel Ports: 8 FC ports
    FC Port Speed: Autosensing 1/2/4 Gb/s
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 8 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 8 Gb/s full duplex
    Protocol Support: FCP, iSCSI
    High-Availability Features: Hot code activation, hot swap blades, redundant power and cooling on the chassis
    Management Features: Dual 100 Mb/sec ethernet ports on the director, Telnet, RADIUS, SNMP, Web Tools, Fabric Watch, 3rd party applications using Brocade SMI agent
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: Web tools, zoning software
    Form Factor: Blade for the 48000 director platform
    Interoperability: http://www.brocade.com/products/pdf/Fabric_Aware_Compatibility_Matrix-07 0208.pdf
    Vendor Comment: Brocade's FC4-16IP blade is the industry's only iSCSI gateway that operates at full 4 Gbit/sec speeds. It provides high scalability, enabling up to a thousand iSCSI servers to connect to a single Brocade 48000 Director.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: Price varies by channel
    Detailed Specs: http://www.brocade.com/products/switches/silkworm_fc416ip.jsp
    Vendor URL: www.brocade.com

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    Product Snapshot #2
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    Product: Brocade Communications Systems Inc.; Brocade iSCSI Gateway

    Fibre Channel Ports: 2 FC ports
    FC Port Speed: Autosensing 1/2 Gb/s
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 2 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 135 MB/s
    Protocol Support: FCP, iSCSI
    High-Availability Features: Two-way active/active clustering with failover and failback capabilities, multiple iSCSI connections provide multipathing support from a single gateway to as many as 100 servers.
    Management Features: CLI (by Telnet, SSH, or console); iSCSI Gateway Manager, SNMP; Allows for monitoring traffic statistics on each storage and network interface, fan and temperature and iSCSI session details.
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: iSCSI Gateway Manager
    Form Factor: 1U Half-rack width
    Interoperability: http://www.brocade.com/products/pdf/Fabric_Aware_Compatibility_Matrix-07 0208.pdf
    Vendor Comment: Brocade's iSCSI Gateway improves data availability with dual gateway, active/active clustered failover, failback, and multipathing capabilities. It delivers high performance at a low cost, supporting up to 100 simultaneous iSCSI connections.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: Under $14,000 list price
    Detailed Specs: http://www.brocade.com/products/appsandgateway/iSCSI.jsp
    Vendor URL: www.brocade.com

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    Product Snapshot #3
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    Product: Cisco Systems Inc.; 9216A and 9216i Multilayer Fabric Switches

    Fibre Channel Ports: 14 FC ports with numerous expansion options available
    FC Port Speed: 1/2/4/10 Gb/s port speed
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: Scalable from 2 to 8 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 144 Gb/s
    Protocol Support: FC, FICON, FCIP, and iSCSI
    High-Availability Features: Integrated hardware-based VSANs and Inter-VSAN Routing (IVR), High-performance Inter-Switch Links (ISLs), Comprehensive network security framework, FCIP for remote SAN extension, iSCSI for extension of SAN to Ethernet-attached servers, see more details at: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps5988/products_data_sheet0900aecd80173f9c.html
    Management Features: Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI, Cisco Fabric Manager and Device Manager and Cisco Fabric Manager Server (optional; requires Cisco Fabric Manager Server license). See more details at: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps6030/products_data_sheet09186a00800c4656.html
    Virtualisation Support: Yes; The Cisco MDS 9216 provides an open platform for hosting intelligent storage services such as network-based virtualisation and replication.
    Software: Currently available software packages include Cisco Enterprise Package, SAN Extension over IP Package, Cisco Mainframe Package, Cisco Fabric Manager Server Package.
    Form Factor: 3-rack unit (RU) system
    Interoperability: Default or Native mode, Interop Mode 1, Interop Mode 2, Interop Mode 3, and Interop Mode 4.
    Vendor Comment: The Cisco MDS 9216i brings new capability to the fabric switch market. Sharing a consistent architecture with the Cisco MDS 9500 Series, the Cisco MDS 9216i integrates both Fibre Channel and IP storage services in a single system to allow maximum flexibility in user configurations.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: An estimated base starting price would be $25,000 for the MDS 9216, $35,000 for the MDS 9216i.
    Detailed Specs: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps5988/products_data_sheet0900aecd80173f9c.html
    Vendor URL: www.cisco.com

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    Product Snapshot #4
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    Product: Cisco Systems Inc.; Linecard - IPS8

    Fibre Channel Ports: None
    FC Port Speed: n/a
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 8 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: n/a
    Protocol Support: FCIP
    High-Availability Features: n/a
    Management Features: Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI, Cisco Fabric Manager and Device Manager and Cisco Fabric Manager Server (optional; requires Cisco Fabric Manager Server license). See more details at: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps6030/products_data_sheet09186a00800c4656.html
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: Currently available software packages include Cisco Enterprise Package, SAN Extension over IP Package, Cisco Mainframe Package, Cisco Fabric Manager Server Package.
    Form Factor: Single slot module
    Interoperability: Interoperates with any IEEE standard GigE ports
    Vendor Comment: The IPS8 module simplifies data protection and business continuance strategies by enabling backup, remote replication, and other disaster recovery services over WAN distances using open-standard FCIP tunneling.optimises utilisation of WAN resources for backup and replication by tunneling up to three virtual Inter Switch Links (ISLs) on a single Gigabit Ethernet port, and enabling compression, FCIP Write Acceleration and FCIP Tape Acceleration.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: An estimated base starting price would be $40,000.
    Detailed Specs: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps5991/products_data_sheet09186a00800c465b.html
    Vendor URL: www.cisco.com

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    Product Snapshot #5
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    Product: Cisco Systems Inc.; Linecard - MPS-14/2

    Fibre Channel Ports: 14 FC ports
    FC Port Speed: 1/2 Gb/s port speed
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 2 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: n/a
    Protocol Support: FC, FICON, FCIP
    High-Availability Features: Not provided
    Management Features: Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI, Cisco Fabric Manager and Device Manager and Cisco Fabric Manager Server (optional; requires Cisco Fabric Manager Server license). See more details at: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps6030/products_data_sheet09186a00800c4656.html
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: Currently available software packages include Cisco Enterprise Package, SAN Extension over IP Package, Cisco Mainframe Package, Cisco Fabric Manager Server Package.
    Form Factor: Single slot module
    Interoperability: Default or Native mode, Interop Mode 1, Interop Mode 2, Interop Mode 3, and Interop Mode 4.
    Vendor Comment: The Cisco MDS 9000 Family Multiprotocol Services Module delivers the intelligence and advanced features required to make multilayer storage area networks a reality. Supported in the Cisco MDS 9200 Series and Cisco MDS 9500 Series and offering fourteen Fibre Channel ports and two Gigabit Ethernet ports, the Cisco Multiprotocol Services Module enables FCIP for long distance SAN extension and iSCSI for Ethernet attached servers without sacrificing Fibre Channel port density.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: An estimated base starting price would be $35,000.
    Detailed Specs: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps5991/products_data_sheet09186a00801ce92d.html
    Vendor URL: www.cisco.com

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    Product Snapshot #6
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    Product: Emulex Corp.; Model 725 iSCSI Storage Router

    Fibre Channel Ports: 1 FC port
    FC Port Speed: 2 Gb/s port speed
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 2 Gigabit Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gb/s
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 400 MB/s
    Protocol Support: FC and iSCSI
    High-Availability Features: High-availibility through system level deployment architecture
    Management Features: Supports In-band and Out-of-band management
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: On-board diagnostic tool, beaconing utility
    Form Factor: 1U half rack
    Interoperability: See the compatibility matrix at: http://www.emulex.com/products/router/interop.jsp
    Vendor Comment: Model 725 iSCSI Storage Router is the price/performance leader in its class. It leverages a single-chip, highly integrated design. The product features a unique split-plane architecture specifically designed to handle multiprotocol translations such as iSCSI to FC
    Availability: April 2007
    Base Cost: $6000 USD, OEM prices vary
    Detailed Specs: http://www.emulex.com/products/router/725/ds.jsp
    Vendor URL: www.emulex.com

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    Product Snapshot #7
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    Product: Emulex Corp.; Model 735 FCIP Storage Router

    Fibre Channel Ports: 1 FC port
    FC Port Speed: 2 Gb/s port speed
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 2 Ethernet ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 200 MB/s
    Protocol Support: FC and FCIP
    High-Availability Features: High-availibility through system level deployment architecture
    Management Features: Supports In-band and Out-of-band management
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: On-board diagnostic tool, beaconing utility
    Form Factor: 1U half rack
    Interoperability: See the compatibility matrix at: http://www.emulex.com/products/router/interop.jsp
    Vendor Comment: Model 735 FCIP Storage Router enables affordable SAN extension for IT administrators. It leverages a single-chip, highly integrated design that handles multiprotocol translations from FC to FCIP and has built-in hardware. Compression enables full WAN utilisation up to T3 line rates.
    Availability: April 2007
    Base Cost: $6000 USD, OEM prices vary
    Detailed Specs: http://www.emulex.com/products/router/735/ds.jsp
    Vendor URL: www.emulex.com

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    Product Snapshot #8
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    Product: Hewlett-Packard; StorageWorks 400 Multi-Protocol Router

    Fibre Channel Ports: 16 FC ports
    FC Port Speed: Autosensing 1/2/4 Gb/s port speeds
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 2 Ethernet ports for FCIP (no support for iSCSI)
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1.25 Gb/s for FCIP only
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 128 Gb full duplex end-to-end FC
    Protocol Support: FC and FCIP
    High-Availability Features: The MP Router 400 offers enterprise class high availability features on FC ports (hot code activation, redundant power and cooling systems)
    Management Features: The management features are Web Tools, Fabric Manager, and SMI-S. The MP Router is managed with the same management tools as other B-series SAN switches and directors. This enables seamless integration with the B-series installed base, simplified implementation and administration.
    Virtualisation Support: None
    Software: FC-FC Subnet Routing Service, FCIP Tunneling Service
    Form Factor: 1U
    Interoperability: The SAN Design Guide can be found at: www.hp.com/go/sandesignguide
    Vendor Comment: The MP Router 400 enable organisations to derive more value from the SAN infrastructure by extending its reach across disparate SANs without the risk and downtime of merging them. Organisations can achieve this value whether the SANs reside in the same data center or in geographically disparate locations using FCIP or native Fibre Channel.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: 400 MP Router Lists for $30,449.00 USD
    Detailed Specs: http://h18006.www1.hp.com/products/storageworks/400mpr/index.html
    Vendor URL: www.hp.com

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    Product Snapshot #9
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    Product: SANRAD Inc.; V-Switch 3800 Enterprise iSCSI Switch

    Fibre Channel Ports: 8 FC ports
    FC Port Speed: 2 Gb per port
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Ports: 3 iSCSI ports
    iSCSI (Ethernet) Port Speed: 1 Gb line speed
    Aggregate Bandwidth: 300 MB/s
    Protocol Support: FC, iSCSI, SCSI
    High-Availability Features: iSCSI and FC Port Failover, V-Switch active/active clustering, FC MPIO, 4 WAY data mirroring
    Management Features: Browser based GUI can manage 16 V-Switches simultaneously, comprehensive CLI, Telnet – secured in-band or out of band, RS232 and 10/100 mgt ports. Phone home alerts.
    Virtualisation Support: Volume - virtualisation, 32 snapshots, 4 way mirroring, storage system pooling, storage system concatenation, resizing, local and remote replication
    Software: Not provided
    Form Factor: 1U standard rack mount
    Interoperability: All FC storage systems that comply with the FC2 standard – HP, Dell, EMC, IBM, NEC, HDS, SUN, Nexsan RAIDinc
    Vendor Comment: V-Switch 3800 delivers an open, reliable, highly scalable iSCSI storage solution for secondary storage in enterprises. V-Switch 3800 enables enterprise users to build and manage a large pool of diverse storage systems, virtualise the storage pool into custom volumes and assign those volumes to many servers using iSCSI.
    Availability: Currently available
    Base Cost: $12,000 to $39,000 USD
    Detailed Specs: http://www.sanrad.com/iscsi.asp?IP-SAN=498
    Vendor URL: www.sanrad.com

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    This was first published in April 2007

     

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