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Topspin Adds New Smarts To Boot Over InfiniBand

Topspin Communications unveiled its intelligent Boot over InfiniBand, an augmented server virtualization solution that allows standard diskless servers to be deployed in a "stateless" fashion, the vendor said.

Intelligent Boot over InfiniBand lets customers provision any combination of application, operating system, storage, and I/O resources to a server on-demand in the time it takes to reboot. That kind of capability opens the door to blade servers to lower costs, increase density and reduce power consumption over traditional server packages, Topspin said.

"Boot capabilities are simply the next natural evolution for InfiniBand," said Steve Duplessie, founder of the Enterprise Storage Group, in a statement, adding that InfiniBand is well suited for high-performance and large-scale clusters. InfiniBand is what is going to make server virtualization and the whole blade movement meaningful," Duplessie said.

The Boot over InfiniBand solution set consist of a new "remote-boot" version of Topspin's host channel adapter (HCA), a Topspin Server Switch, and one or more of Topspin's Ethernet or Fibre Channel gateways for connecting to the application images in network attached storage (NAS) or storage area networks (SANs).

Application and OS images are deposited in storage and tracked by the appropriate Topspin gateway. When a server needs to have an image provisioned to it, the remote-boot HCA points the server to the proper image in storage and boots the server over the network with that image, the vendor said. The Topspin Server Switch in turn provides the cross-connects and mappings to bring I/O and storage resources to the new server/application pair.

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