Network News: Brocade, Trans-Arctic Cables, MRV

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Here’s our review of some of today’s noteworthy links for the networking sector of the data center industry:

Brocade selected by Special Effects company.  Brocade (BRCD) announced that visual effects company, Rushes (part of the Deluxe Entertainment Services Group), has deployed a Brocade data center networking solution based on Ethernet fabric technology, helping it meet growing demand and link seven data centers located across five buildings in the Soho area of London. Rushes used VCS Fabric technology and Brocade VDX 6720 Data Center switches to provide the 10 GbE performance, elasticity and resilience needed to boost network capacity to meet increasing bandwidth demands. “Given we have a distributed data center environment, if we had deployed traditional top-of-rack switches we would have created a huge mesh network resulting in vastly increased management overhead,” said Jez Tucker, Rushes’ Senior Systems Administrator. “In contrast, installing Brocade VDX switches in each computer room to create an Ethernet fabric is far simpler. Essentially VDX with VCS technology allows you to deploy a geographically distributed chassis switch, with each VDX being a blade in that chassis – all managed as one switch.”

Spending $1.5 Billion on cables to save 60ms.  Extreme Tech has an article on the laying of the first ever trans-Arctic Ocean submarine fiber optic cables. It discusses three cables that, when completed, are estimated to cost between $600 million and $1.5 billion each. Two cables will cross the Northwest Passage, called Artic Fibre and Artic Link. They run through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The third is the Russian Optical Trans-Arctic Submarine Cable System (ROTACS), and will skirt the north coast of Scandinavia and Russia. The three cables are being laid with a common objective – redundancy and speed. To go from London to Tokyo a packet takes roughly 230 milliseconds.  The three new cables will reduce this by 30 percent to 127 milliseconds.  The increased speed will be used for algorithmic stock market trading, where milliseconds equate to millions of dollars. Additionally it will provide the redundant path for London to Tokyo that currently traverses either across Europe, the Middle East and the Indian Ocean, or the Atlantic, U.S. and Pacific. The trans-Artic route is about 5,000 miles less. Extreme Tech also did an interesting article last year on the Secret World of Submarine Cables.

MRV announces Ethernet 2.0 platform.  MRV Communications (MRVC) announced it is fully compliant with theMetro Ethernet Forum(MEF) Carrier Ethernet 2.0(CE 2.0) initiative that was announced last month. As one of the first to announce a compliant solution, MRV’s OptiSwitch, a family of compact Intelligent Ethernet Demarcation and Carrier Ethernet Aggregation platforms, exceeds the Multiple Class-of-Service(Multi-CoS), network interconnect, and service OAM capabilities set forth by the MEF in the CE 2.0 initiative. Key features of the platform not only include Multi-CoS, but Hierarchical Quality of Service (H-QoS) for dynamic bandwidth management and complex traffic switching for global EthernetNetwork-to-Network services. “MRV supports the CE 2.0 initiative as we believe ubiquitous reach and consistent Ethernet service performance are critical components forSMBs, enterprises, cloud computing and applications that run in datacenter environments,” said Zeev Draer, VP of Strategic Marketing for MRVOCS. “MRV has a long history of working with MEF specifications, and asa result, the field-proven OptiSwitch product line is designed to meet and exceed the performance characteristics defined in CE 2.0. MRV, with OptiSwitch and Pro-Vision, is not only positioned at the forefront of innovative Carrier Ethernet solutions enabling the delivery of CE 2.0services, but also dedicated to providing generationally advanced infrastructure to help make next generation services a reality.”

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  1. Hugh Curran

    Is the cable strong enough to keep from breaking? Fibre optic cable supplies our telephone & internet in our town but the cable is subject to a branch or tree falling across the line. What can prevent that at the bottom of an ocean? Breakage was common with telegraph lines across the Atlantic while the Arctic regions have far more difficult & unpredictable conditions.