Sometimes, technology adoption is driven by the simple things like cabling and compatibility and that can be the case with the migration from 1Gb Ethernet to 10Gb Ethernet.
One of the benefits of moving to 10GbE is the option to converge network and storage traffic on a common set of adapters, cables and switches, thereby reducing operational expenditures (OpEx) and capital expenditures (CapEx). A converged network streamlines and eliminates repeated administrative tasks such as server and network provisioning with a "wire once" deployment model. The converged network also improves business agility letting data centers dynamically and rapidly respond to requests for new or expanded services, new servers and new configurations. Furthermore, with a unified network, data centers can reduce their capital requirements by:
• 30 percent for adapters and switches
• 80 percent for cabling
• 40 percent for power and cooling
Support for 10GBase-T will also enable more 10GbE deployment for network attached storage (NAS) and iSCSI storage, as both rely on an Ethernet network and are constrained with 1GbE. Next-generation iSCSI and NAS storage solutions are based on 10GbE to support a full range of data center applications, including database and video content. Today's universal converged network adapters are now fully supporting iSCSI and NAS storage with high performance offloads for networking and storage protocols.
10GbE for the cloud
Cloud computing is emerging as the next cost-saving technology for data centers. In order to satisfy performance demands with a highly-efficient infrastructure, cloud providers are also moving to 10GbE networks. 10GBase-T will make this possible using low-cost twisted pair cables. Most of the cloud data centers are "green-field" deployments that can wire once using Cat 6a cabling for maximum flexibility.
As you plan your data center migration from 1GbE to 10GbE, be sure to purchase equipment that is backward-compatible and provides support for converged networking. Industry experts and leading- edge network vendors provide extensive tools and advice to that can help you optimize your transition to 10GbE. With 10GBase-T, the migration to 10GbE will be cost-effective and meet performance and budget requirements.
Shaun Walsh is vice president of marketing at Emulex Corp.