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Storage Suppliers Show Off HPC Wares

Storage vendors are revealing a slew of high-end switches and energy-saving technologies at this week's Supercomputing 07 (SC07) conference in Reno, Nev.

Switch vendors, for instance, are outlining their roadmaps for 40-Gbit/s Ethernet, InfiniBand, and iWarp. Here is a summary:


Cisco has unveiled its SFS 3504 Multifabric Switch, defined as a gateway switch for busting the bottlenecks that may occur between InfiniBand clusters to storage. This is the second generation of the technology Cisco acquired with its $250 million purchase of TopSpin in 2005. The switch features twelve 20-Gbit/s DDR InfiniBand ports; six 1-Gbit/s and two 10-Gbit/s Ethernet ports; and four 4-Gbit/s FC ports. A Fabric Analysis and Correlation Toolkit (FACT) comes with the switch for troubleshooting and bit error rate monitoring.

The SFS 3504 has been adopted at two user sites, including retailer Cabelas. It will be generally available next month for Fibre Channel and 1-Gbit/s Ethernet, with the 10-Gbit/s Ethernet modules due this spring. Pricing for a 256-node cluster would start at about $150 per port.

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