Voltaire Announces Vantage 8500 Ethernet Switch

World's largest non-blocking 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch simplifies data center networking; offers dramatically lower latency, lower power consumption and improved scalability for half the price.

June 8, 2009

5 Min Read
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BILLERICA, Mass. and RA'ANANA, Israel - June 8, 2009 -Voltaire Ltd., a leading provider of scale-out data center fabrics, today announced the Vantage 8500, a high-performance, high density, scale-out, Layer 2 core 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch optimized for enterprise data centers and cloud computing environments. The Voltaire Vantage 8500 is the industry's largest non-blocking 10 Gigabit Ethernet switching platform and enables users to benefit from new levels of efficiency, scalability and lower latency, while simplifying and consolidating network tiers to lower infrastructure expenses.

The Voltaire Vantage 8500 features 288 wire speed, 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports in a 15U high chassis making it the world's largest non-blocking Ethernet data center switch. The switch features a unique scale-out stacking option enabling more than 3,400 non-blocking ports in a single switching fabric for scalability that is far beyond any alternative solution in the market. Future versions of the switch are expected to include even denser line cards for higher port counts. The Vantage 8500 is based on converged enhanced Ethernet (CEE) technology to provide InfiniBand-like capabilities to the data center such as a lossless switching fabric, multi-pathing, virtualization, fabric-wide congestion management and QoS.

The increasing adoption of virtualization is driving the need for new data center network architectures that offer improved I/O bandwidth without adding extra tiers and oversubscription to the network. The Vantage 8500's unique scale-out design delivers important advantages to data centers implementing virtualization by enabling predictable, consistent 10 Gb/s throughput. The switch supports industry standard servers, third-party switches, and leading management and virtualization solutions. It is interoperable with both 1 and 10 Gigabit Ethernet solutions for easy integration with existing data centers and mixed environments.

"Large data centers, particularly those leveraging server virtualization, are migrating to a two tier, (top of rack and core) network architecture," said Joe Skorupa, Research VP Enterprise Networks, Gartner, Inc. "This approach is driving the need for large capacity, non-blocking 10GigE core switches that cost effectively support large (thousands of ports) layer 2 mesh networks."

The Voltaire Vantage 8500 has a unique capability to enable simplified, flat, scale-out fabrics. By clustering up to twelve Vantage 8500 switches together, a customer can expand their data center to many thousands of servers while preserving the same efficiency and price-per-port, without degrading the performance or latency like traditional hierarchical network designs. Other unique capabilities include dynamic traffic and congestion management based on Voltaire custom silicon that enables increased fabric utilization, true lossless behavior, extensive monitoring, and IEEE DCB (Data Center Bridging) compliance.The Vantage 8500 features less than 1 microsecond latency, low 10 watts per port power consumption at low per port costs delivering unmatched scalability with the lowest solution cost, power consumption, and latency on the market. For a customer building a 1000 node data center fabric with Voltaire Vantage switches, this delivers 10X lower latency and 4X faster core performance for half the price, using 3X less power than alternative solutions.

"Virtualization breaks the old network architecture and creates a need for a new approach to data center networking," said Asaf Somekh, vice president of marketing, Voltaire. "With virtualization, a three-tiered architecture with oversubscription no longer works - customers need a solution with a non-blocking core that can scale linearly. The Voltaire Vantage 8500 will be available this year to address the virtualization, scalability, low latency, low power and low cost requirements of scale-out data center customers."

The Vantage 8500 also features many software-based capabilities to address virtualized and converged data center environments. It allows users to manage roaming Virtual Machine ports, assign them unique policies, monitor them as if they were physical ports, and form multiple virtual fabrics with unique behavior and resource assignment. Its powerful management OS (VT-OS) allows multiple simultaneous sessions and granular access control to virtual or physical switch elements.

Voltaire's UFM (Unified Fabric Manager) software can manage multiple Vantage 8500 switches plus attached 3rd party virtual or physical edge switches to deliver central and consistent fabric policy and extensive monitoring up to the application layers. UFM software delivers the industry's most extensive management for lossless and virtualized fabrics with unique congestion control and monitoring capabilities. In addition to UFM software, Voltaire's application acceleration software packages designed to work with the company's InfiniBand products, have also been ported to Ethernet.

"Combining Voltaire Vantage 8500 switches and software with IBM BladeCenter, iDataPlex and rackmount servers will enable, high performance, virtualized environments that also address the low latency, low power and low cost requirements of our data center customers," said Alex Yost, vice president, IBM System & Technology Group.Availability

The Voltaire Vantage 8500 is expected to be available in the second half of 2009 through Voltaire's OEM partners and global resellers. Additional information is available at www.voltaire.com/Vantage_8500 .

More details on Voltaire's Ethernet architecture are explained in a whitepaper entitled, "Scaling-Out Ethernet for the Data Center" available for download at www.voltaire.com/Ethernet.

The new Vantage 8500 low latency Ethernet switch is a natural extension to Voltaire's family of 20 and 40 Gb/s InfiniBand switching platforms and software and enables customers to choose the underlying data center fabric, based on their application requirements and individual technology practices. Voltaire's director-class 40 Gb/s InfiniBand switch, the Grid Director??? 4700 is expected to be available later this month.

About VoltaireVoltaire is a leading provider of scale-out computing fabrics for data centers, high performance computing and cloud environments. Voltaire's family of server and storage fabric switches and advanced management software improve performance of mission-critical applications, increase efficiency and reduce costs through infrastructure consolidation and lower power consumption. Used by more than 30 percent of the Fortune 100 and other premier organizations across many industries, including many of the TOP500 supercomputers, Voltaire products are included in server and blade offerings from Bull, HP, IBM, NEC, Rackable, SGI and Sun and provide the internal server-to-storage connectivity for the HP-Oracle Database Machine. Founded in 1997, Voltaire is headquartered in Ra'anana, Israel and Billerica, Massachusetts. More information is available at www.voltaire.com or by calling 1-800-865-8247.

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