Data Center LAN
LAN Solution

Managed data center LANs

Data center LANs need to be re-engineered to handle virtualization and cloud computing

  • Data Center Ethernet network
  • 1/10 Gbps Ethernet ports (optical or electric)
  • Fabric-based design
  • Loop-less topologies for smaller-scale data centers
Contact
Rasmus Krone

Head of Marketing & Communication

Standardizing and managing data center LANs with Ethernet

Sharp increase in data traffic, virtualization and cloud computing: Enterprises that operate their own data centers typically respond to these challenges by adding or replacing IT infrastructure components. However, these trends also impact data center LANs, requiring the implementation of infrastructure with special features – an issue that is often overlooked.
Probably the best way to prime data center LANs for virtualization and workload optimization is to move to data center Ethernet (DCE). DCE networks create high-performance links across the entire data center. They help operators to cut costs, consolidate network assets, and implement a homogeneous architecture that delivers flexibility, scalability and openness.
T-Systems offers Ethernet-based managed data center LAN as a service. This is an ideal way to provide networks for corporate data centers that are harmonized and future-proof. All technologies employed in the LAN have been tested in T-Systems’ own, fully standardized cloud data centers. The service is charged on a per-port basis.

Technical specifications:

Data center Ethernet networks
  • Ethernet switching infrastructure within data center environments
DCE networks of conventional design
  • Loop-less design for small-scale data center topologies
  • Layer 2 connectivity, or Layer 2/Layer 3 connectivity
DCE networks of fabric-based design
  • Ethernet fabric technologies for high performance and scalability
  • Layer 2 connectivity, or Layer 2/Layer 3 connectivity
  • Compliance with fiber channel over Ethernet (FCoE) and data center bridging (DCB) standards
  • 1 Gbps SFP
  • 1 Gbps RJ45
  • 10 Gbps SFP
  • 10 Gbps RJ45
  • 40 Gbps (QSFP)

Managed Ethernet networks for data centers

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The cloud era presents data centers with new challenges. Their technological resources must be significantly expanded to enable rapid provisioning of high-quality services. Virtualization enables the extremely rapid integration and deployment of new servers and applications. However, the data center LAN often represents a bottleneck. Virtualized environments require a network that is extremely flexible, and cloud computing puts strain on conventional LAN architectures.

Heterogeneous networks

Traditional architectures comprising access, aggregation and core layers no longer meet the needs of today’s data centers. The majority’s share of LAN load is no longer vertical but horizontal: between servers, or between storage systems and servers. And legacy infrastructures comprising a wide variety of components require high maintenance effort. Frequently, lack of standardization means that each LAN component has to be managed separately, which is costly, time-consuming, and error-prone.

Inefficient LANs with inadequate transparency

Data center LANs must now deliver far greater performance. But many operators, regarding these networks as technologically unexciting, have neglected them. The end result is often a jumble of mismatched hardware, and a diverse assortment of management and monitoring tools. Under these circumstances, efficiency and automation are unattainable. Whenever new systems are rolled out, network administrators are faced with difficult questions: whether and how the LAN components can be harmonized with the existing network, and how new systems will impact interoperability between components.

The benefits of standardization

Against this background, data center LANs need to be based on a consistent, homogeneous architecture that is both flexible and efficient to operate. As part of the Managed LAN Services (MLS) architecture, these are met by modular network design. The aim is to minimize a network’s complexity and unique characteristics without affecting its ability to meet highly specific requirements.

Gigabit Ethernet

Today’s networks are increasingly being replaced by 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE), which supports data center scenarios with a range of 10GbE interfaces. A key advantage of this technology is the option of scaling to 40 Gbit/s and 100 Gigabit Ethernet. The former is suitable, for example, for the core and aggregation layers of data center architectures and for environments featuring top-of-rack switches.

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