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Cisco's FabricPath: Multi-Path For Those Who Can't Wait For Standards

Cisco made a few announcements at CiscoLive that extends thier footprint in the data center and offers Cisco customers migration paths to 10Gb Ethernet. The biggest announcement is Cisco's pre-standard multi-path Ethernet protocol called FabricPath that makes better use of switched infrastructure. Cisco is pretty far ahead of other networking vendors and most data centers with FabricPath, but for early adopters, Cisco and their customers will get some first hand experience with multi-path Ethern

Cisco also announced a new line card the Nexus 7000 F-series module which support 32 1Gb or 10Gb auto-sensing ports, and allows the Nexus 7000 to scale to 512 ports total. The F-series module support 320Gbps switching with 5 micro-seconds latency. The F-series module to Nexus 7000 oversubscribes 1.4:1, supporting 230 Gbps to the backplane. The module supports TRILL and Data Center Bridging protocols and uses approximately 10 watts per port. The 1Gbps/10Gbps auto-sensing port provides an easy migration path to higher speeds as data centers ramp up 10Gb Ethernet. The F-series is prices at $35,000 list price and will be available in Q3 of 2010.

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