The Road to 25/50/100 Gigabit Ethernet
Last month, my colleague Ryan Klein shared some important insights related to the Ethernet "wire" and how the channel should view I/O connectivity through a more strategic lens. This month, I want to expand on that and give you a preview into the future of the wire and how it will add even more value to the data center.
An Ethernet industry leader and the first to demonstrate end-to-end interoperability for 25Gb and 100Gb Ethernet solutions, QLogic announced it was a founding member of the 2550100 Alliance, a new group of server, storage, networking and software companies collaborating to systematically bring solutions to market.
Why 25/50/100Gb Ethernet?
While 10Gb Ethernet (10GbE) technology is fine for many existing deployments, it cannot efficiently deliver the bandwidth required by next-generation cloud and web-scale environments. It would require organizations to purchase and install twice as many (or more) 10GbE switches, along with additional cables, space, power and cooling–a significant increase in capital, operating and management expenses without the ability to meet future network demands.
When compared with 10GbE technology, 25GbE enables resellers and their customers to provide 2.5X the performance of 10Gb Ethernet, making it a cost-effective upgrade to the 10GbE infrastructure. Since 25GbE is delivered across a single lane, it provides greater switch port density and network scalability compared to 40GbE, which is actually four 10GbE lanes. In addition, deploying 25GbE networks enables organizations to significantly decrease capital and operating expenses by reducing the required number of switches and cables–along with space, power, and cooling–compared to 10GbE and 40GbE technology. Fewer network components also reduce ongoing management and maintenance costs. Further, 25Gbps Ethernet provides an easy upgrade path to 50GbE and 100GbE networks, which utilize multiple 25GbE lanes.
25GbE technology is expected to catch on quickly in the market, especially in Cloud and Enterprise environments. According to a forecast by Crehan Research, shipments of 25GbE adapter and LOM ports will reach 1 million in less than half the time of 10GbE, the technology currently used for high-performance server connectivity.
So, how does the 2550100 Alliance help? The 2550100 Alliance was formed to facilitate collaboration in bringing solutions to market. The backbone of the 2550100 Alliance is a set of programs designed to:
- Assist hardware and software vendors with early access to 2550100 networking products and work together to efficiently develop solutions.
- Assist channel partners with online and hands-on training, and with early access to 2550100 networking products, so they may guide their customers through the migration.
- Assist IT professionals with education, hands-on training, and early access to 2550100 networking products needed to evaluate and deploy the new technology.
The 2550100 Alliance is making it easy for vendors, channel partners and IT organizations to learn, evaluate and implement 25Gb, 50Gb and 100Gb Ethernet solutions. There is no cost to join the Alliance. You’ll find information about Alliance members, program details and how to join at www.2550100.com.
Tony Carrozza is the Senior Vice President of Worldwide Sales at QLogic. Guest blogs such as this one are published monthly and are part of The VAR Guy's annual platinum sponsorship.