The Cisco® MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch, capable of speeds of 4, 2, and 1 Gbps, offers outstanding value by providing flexibility, high-availability, security, and ease-of-use at an affordable price in the form factor to fit IBM BladeCenter (BladeCenter, BladeCenter T, and BladeCenter H) and HP c-Class BladeSystem. With its flexibility to expand ports in increments, the Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch offers the densities required from entry level to advanced. Powered by Cisco MDS 9000 SAN-OS Software, it includes advanced storage networking features and functions and is compatible with Cisco MDS 9500 Series Multilayer Directors and Cisco MDS 9200 Series Multilayer Fabric Switches, providing transparent, end-to-end service delivery in core-edge deployments.
Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch for IBM BladeCenter
Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch for HP C-Class BladeSystem
• Intelligent storage networking services at an affordable price - The Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch, powered by Cisco MDS 9000 SAN-OS Software, offers intelligent storage networking capabilities such as virtual SANs (VSANs), PortChannels, quality of service (QoS), and security for cost-effective design, deployment, and management of departmental and enterprise SANs.
• Highly available platform for mission-critical deployments - The Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch is designed for environments where downtime is not an option. It offers nondisruptive software upgrades, VSANs for fault isolation, and PortChannels for Inter-Switch Link (ISL) resiliency.
• Comprehensive security framework - The Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch supports RADIUS and TACACS+, port security, fabric binding, Fibre Channel Security Protocol (FC-SP) host-to-switch and switch-to-switch authentication, Secure FTP (SFTP), Secure Shell Version 2 (SSHv2) and Simple Network Management Protocol Version 3 (SNMPv3) implementing Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), VSANs, hardware-enforced zoning, broadcast zones, and per-VSAN role-based access control (RBAC).
• Simplified storage management - The Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch includes built-in storage network management, with all features available through a command-line interface (CLI) or Cisco Fabric Manager, a centralized management tool that simplifies management of a standalone switch or multiple switches and fabrics.
• Sophisticated diagnostics - Industry-leading intelligent diagnostics such as Fibre Channel Ping, Fibre Channel Traceroute, Switched Port Analyzer (SPAN), Cisco Fabric Analyzer, and integrated call-home capability enhance reliability, facilitate faster problem resolution, and reduce service costs.
• Reduced total cost of ownership (TCO) - Common platform architecture and the use of Cisco MDS 9000 SAN-OS Software intelligent storage-networking services across all Cisco MDS 9000 family switches reduce ongoing operating expenses by providing a consistent set of provisioning, management, and diagnostic capabilities.
Figure 1. Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch for IBM and HP C-class BladeSystem
Key Features and Benefits
Exceptional Flexibility and Scalability
VSANs for Segmentation and Isolation
Advanced Traffic Management for High-Performance, Resilient SANs
• Virtual output queuing helps ensure line-rate performance on each port, independent of traffic pattern, by eliminating head-of-line blocking.
• Each port group consisting of 4 ports has a pool of 64 buffer credits, with a default of 16 buffer credits per port. When extended distances are required, up to 61 buffer credits can be allocated to a single port within the port group. This extensibility is available without additional licensing.
• PortChannels allow users to aggregate up to 16 physical ISLs into a single logical bundle, providing optimized bandwidth use across all links. The bundle can consist of any port from the switch, helping ensure that the bundle remains active even in the event of a port failure.
• Fabric Shortest Path First (FSPF)-based multipathing provides the intelligence to load balance across up to 16 equal-cost paths and, in the event of a switch failure, dynamically reroute traffic.
• QoS can be used to manage bandwidth and control latency, to prioritize critical traffic.
• Comprehensive port and flow statistics facilitate sophisticated performance analysis and service-level agreement (SLA) accounting.
Advanced Diagnostics and Troubleshooting Tools
• VSANs are used to achieve higher security and greater stability by providing complete isolation among devices that are connected to the same physical SAN.
• Intelligent packet inspection is performed at the port level, including the application of access control lists (ACLs) for hardware enforcement of zones, VSANs, and advanced port security features.
• Extended zoning capabilities help ensure that broadcasts are restricted to the selected zones (the broadcast zones).
• Smart Zoning: When the Smart Zoning feature is enabled, Cisco MDS 9000 Family fabrics provision the hardware access control entries specified by the zone set more efficiently, avoiding the superfluous entries that would allow servers (initiators) to talk to other servers, or allow storage devices (targets) to talk to other storage devices. This feature makes larger zones with multiple initiators and multiple targets feasible without excessive consumption of hardware resources. Thus, smart zones can correspond to applications, application clusters, hypervisor clusters, or other data center entities, saving the time that administrators previously spent creating many small zones, and enabling the automation of zoning tasks.
• FC-SP provides switch-to-switch and host-to-switch Diffie-Hellman Challenge Handshake Authentication Protocol (DH-CHAP) authentication supporting RADIUS or TACACS+, to help ensure that only authorized devices access protected storage networks. This feature, in conjunction with management access and control plane security, makes the Cisco MDS 9000 family among the most secure platforms of its kind.
High-Availability Platform for Mission-Critical Environments
• Consistent, logical CLI - Adhering to the syntax of the widely known Cisco IOS® Software CLI, the Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI is easy to learn and delivers broad management capabilities. The Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI is an extremely efficient and direct interface designed to provide optimal capabilities to administrators in enterprise environments.
• Cisco Fabric Manager - Cisco Fabric Manager is included with the Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch for integrated, comprehensive management of larger SAN environments. Cisco Fabric Manager is a responsive, easy-to-use Java application that allows administrators to perform vital tasks such as topology discovery, fabric configuration and verification, provisioning, monitoring, and fault resolution.
• The Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch provides an extensive API for integration with third-party and user-developed management tools. The APIs are based on industry-standard protocols, including SNMP and the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S).
Minimum Software Requirements
• Cisco MDS 9000 SAN-OS Software Release 3.1(2a)
Performance and Port Configurations
• Port speed - 4-, 2-, and 1-Gbps autosensing with 4 Gbps of dedicated bandwidth per port
• Buffer credits - Up to 64 for a group of 4 ports, with a default of 16 buffer credits per port
• Base configuration with 10 ports for IBM bladecenter and 12 ports for HP c-Class Bladesystem
– Additional port increments with the port activation license Additional port increments with the port activation license
• PortChannel - Up to 16 ports in a PortChannel
Supported Optics, Media, and Transmission Distances
Table 1. Optics, Media, and Transmission Distances Supported by the Cisco MDS Fibre Channel Blade Switch
– Hardware-enforced zoning
– Logical-unit-number (LUN) zoning and read-only zones
• FC-SP for host-to-switch and switch-to-switch authentication
• Port security
• Management access
– IP ACLs
• Fibre Channel protocols
– FC-PH, Revision 4.3
– FC-PH-2, Revision 7.4
– FC-PH-3, Revision 9.4
– FC-GS-2, Revision 5.3
– FC-GS-3, Revision 7.01
– FC-FLA, Revision 2.7
– FC-FG, Revision 3.5
– FC-SW-2, Revision 5.3
– FC-AL, Revision 4.5
– FC-AL-2, Revision 7.0
– FC-PLDA, Revision 2.1
– FC-VI, Revision 1.61
– FCP, Revision 12
– FCP-2, Revision 7
– FC-SB-2, Revision 2.1
– FC-BB, Revision 4.7
– FC-FS, Revision 1.9
– FC-PI, Revision 13
– FC-MI, Revision 1.99
– FC-Tape, Revision 1.17
– IP over Fibre Channel (RFC 2625)
– Extensive IETF-standards-based TCP/IP, SNMPv3, and Remote Monitoring (RMON) MIBs
– Class of service: Class 2, Class 3, and Class F
– Fibre Channel standard port types: E, F, and FL
– Fibre Channel enhanced port types: SD and TE
• Name server
• Registered state change notification (RSCN)
• Login services
• Public loop
• In-order delivery
• Name-server zoning
Diagnostics and Troubleshooting Tools
• Power-on self-test (POST) diagnostics
• Online diagnostics
• Internal loopbacks
• Fibre Channel Traceroute capability
• Fibre Channel Ping
• Fibre Channel Debug
• Cisco Fabric Analyzer
• Port-level statistics
• Access methods
– Access is via the bladeserver chassis management port
• Access protocols
– RBACL using RADIUS or TACACS+ authentication, authorization, and accounting (AAA) functions
– VSAN-based roles
• Management applications
– Cisco MDS 9000 family CLI
– Cisco Fabric Manager and Device Manager
– Cisco Fabric Manager Server (optional; requires Cisco Fabric Manager Server license)
• Nondisruptive software upgrades
• Stateful process restart
• Per-VSAN fabric services
• Hot-swappable SFP optics
• PortChannels aggregating up to 16 ports
• Online diagnostics
• Configuration file management
• Call home
• Port beaconing
• System LEDs
• SNMP traps for alerts
Table 2. Ordering Information
Table 3. Product Specifications
Service and Support
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