Light Reading
400Gbit/s bandwidth granularity is not only feasible, but already useful today.

The 400Gbit/s Demonstrator

Eduard Beier
8/21/2013
100%
0%

A collaboration between research institutions and industrial partners demonstrated at the ISC'13 that 400Gbit/s bandwidth granularity is not only feasible, but already useful today.

For demonstration purposes a number of innovative technologies such as 400Gbit/s DWDM Super Channel, high-speed flash memory and a distributed parallel file system are used in combination.

The project is set up to have real data and realistic applications instead of yet another "hero experiment" with test generators and analyzers. Initial performance tests were performed to check the operational condition of all components working together in the demonstrator. Synthetic data and load was put on the connectivity and IT components and showed overall good operational conditions.

Then two applications were activated on the demonstrator:

  • Climate Research with centralized computing accessing to distributed data

  • Turbine Development with multi-stage processing dynamically both shifting big-data between Munich and Dresden (620km standard fiber) over a single 400Gbit/s wavelength Super Channel.

    From the research community are involved: the German Centre for Aerospace (DLR); the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ); the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology (MPI-M) from the Max Planck Society and the computing center of the Max Planck Society in Garching (RZG); the computer center of the Technical University of Freiberg (RZ TUBAF); and the Center for Information Services and High Performance Computing Dresden University of Technology (ZIH).

    Industrial partners are: Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Barracuda Networks Inc. , Bull SA , Cluster Vision, EMC2, IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM), Mellanox Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: MLNX), Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), and T-Systems International GmbH .

    The fundamental network structure of the Demonstrator is shown by the following picture:

    Network Structure

    The compute clusters on both sides are clients of the distributed parallel file system which consists of 12 servers with three flash memory boards in each server. Both clusters are able to read and write at 400 Gbit/s on that file system.

    Standard Sandy Bridge servers with at least five PCIe3.0x8 slots and 128GB DRAM are used. The design goal was to create about 18 GBytes of sustained duplex data rate per node (Ethernet: 5GBytes, Memory: 6 GBytes, Fabric: 7 GBytes). The Fabric data rate has not yet been tested, the other rates have been confirmed by tests.

    For performance margin reasons the setup is moderately overbooked between memory and network. Below are the total theoretical performance numbers.

    Theoretical Throughput

    The predecessor project in 2010 (100Gbit/s Testbed Dresden Freiberg) required arrays of about 800 spinning disks on each side to form a 100Gbit/s data path. Because that setup was, for scaling reasons, not possible for 400 Gbit/s, the 2 GBytes I/O throughput flash memory board is one of the enablers of this 400Gbit/s project.

    For the ISC configuration (in the picture below), the following systems were added: a 10GbE Cluster in Dresden; a 2x100GbE link to Freiberg (not connected during ISC); in Garching the SuperMUC at LRZ (one of the fastest supercomputers in Europe) and a 480 GBytes cluster (> 2500 cores) at RZG; and a commercial Cloud Service from T-Systems (not connected during ISC).

    The Big Picture

    The project links to SDN and NFV -- in particular as it is very active in NSI (Network-to-Service-Interface) definition. (For further information, see the link below to additional project information).

    Because the "distributed high speed GPFS" approach is of some universal nature (e.g. for HPC datacenter backup and HPC workload distribution reasons) the setup will be tested for commercial applicability during the post ISC phase. The possibility to use network functions like encryption, firewalling and data compression is definitely a must in a commercial case.

    Network appliances for 40 Gbit/s and 100 Gbit/s are neither available nor would they be affordable in many cases. Therefore we are going to test virtualized network functions on standard server hardware (see picture below); that additional "module," which is based on the same server hardware as the other servers, gets in between each server and the router on each side.

    NFV Module

    Please feel free to ask questions about any technical aspect of the project. The project team, which consists of some of the best specialists on their individual field, will be happy to answer. For additional project information: http://tu-dresden.de/zih/400gigabit.

    The Partners

    — Eduard Beier, process systems engineer, T-Systems International

    (6)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    RolfSperber
    50%
    50%
    RolfSperber,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    9/26/2013 | 10:11:00 AM
    Re: SDN and NFV
    Ray, we are at a very early stage, but abstracting from both hardware (and in consequence IOS) layer and utilizing a common framework (see NSI WG in OGF) and at the same time allow for docking of virtalized network functions will work for multi vendor, multi carrier and multi domain. Still, its a long way to go!
    Ray@LR
    50%
    50%
    Ray@LR,
    User Rank: Blogger
    9/26/2013 | 7:51:13 AM
    Re: SDN and NFV
    Rolf

    You say it is not restricted to a single domain, but is it applicable in networks that traverse multiple infrastructures run and managed by multiple network operators?
    RolfSperber
    100%
    0%
    RolfSperber,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    9/25/2013 | 8:43:49 AM
    Re: Is this another route in for NFV?
    Requirements in industry will not be so different from those in R&D. Looking at the plans in the context of Horizon 2020 Puplic Private Partnership is a target of European efforts. Taking into account the cost of infrastructure and the prevailing attitude to pay as little as possible for utilization of infrastructure, more sophisticated multiplexing methods, and this include NFV, are inevitable.

    For network operators this scheme means significantly reduced time to market.
    RolfSperber
    100%
    0%
    RolfSperber,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    9/25/2013 | 8:36:55 AM
    SDN and NFV
    In this project we will be going a step further. Our plan is to create an environment that allows for creating a virtual network based on the requirements of either applications or  carrier provided network functionality. We will not be restricted to a single domain and connectivity, our target is a network created from building blocks out of a repository. These building blocks can be connectivity with certain quality parameters or virtualized network functions like e.g. firwall functionality, compression, encryption, accelleration.

     

     
    Eddie_
    50%
    50%
    Eddie_,
    User Rank: Blogger
    8/21/2013 | 3:00:47 PM
    Re: Is this another route in for NFV?
    NFV simply scales better than HW based approaches (if NFV tests in September show good results).

    A possible 2013 roadmap for the project:
    • fully SDN controlled network
    • 200GBit/s datapath
    • NFV in the data path 

    a possible 2014 roadmap for the project:
    • scale up to a 1TBit/s data path

    how else could you do that?

     

     

     

     

     
    Ray@LR
    50%
    50%
    Ray@LR,
    User Rank: Blogger
    8/21/2013 | 1:01:52 PM
    Is this another route in for NFV?
    Interesting that functions virtualization takes the place of appliances that are either too expensive to deploy or have not yet been created... is NFV going to help the R&D sector more than production network operatins in the early years?
    More Blogs from Column
    Is your network built on 'The Old IP,' or are you part of 'The New IP' revolution?
    Carriers are being left out of purchases made on mobile phones, but they have the opportunity to get back in the value chain for both physical and virtual buys.
    The Internet of Things (IoT) will provide a major challenge for network operators, but SDN and NFV can help.
    With the high cost of achieving carrier-grade networks, is high availability good enough?
    Open is possible, definable and important, because an environment of freedom is a superior construct.
    Flash Poll
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    IHS Analyst Discusses eLTE at CCW 2014

    9|10|14   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


    Thomas Lynch, associate director of critical communications at IHS Technology, talks about broadband in critical communications.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    TCAA on Huawei eLTE: A Broadband Solution for Mission-Critical Communications

    9|10|14   |   2:29   |   (0) comments


    At CCW2014 in Singapore, the TCCA's Phil Kidner talks about the importance of broadband data for critical communications.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Spotlight on Cisco: SDN for Optical Networks

    9|8|14   |   9:27   |   (0) comments


    Cisco's Greg Nehib talks OpenFlow and more on the 'Software-Defined Networking for Optical Networks' panel at the Big Telecom Event in June 2014.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Cisco's Evolved Programmable Network (EPN)

    9|8|14   |   4:05   |   (0) comments


    A look at the various demos Cisco showed at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event highlighting Cisco's EPN innovation and how SDN and NFV technologies are enabling a variety of new services.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    The Future of Ultra-Broadband, With Kevin Kelly (UBBF2014)

    9|5|14   |   1:13   |   (0) comments


    If you think the technological changes we've seen up to now are astounding, just wait until you see what the future has in store. Discuss upcoming breakthroughs with Kevin Kelly, Founding Executive Editor of Wired Magazine, at the Huawei Ultra-Broadband Forum on September 24.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    The Inaugural Optical Innovation Forum in Nice

    9|2|14   |     |   (0) comments


    More than 170 attendees from network operators, service providers, analyst firms, and component companies from around the world convened in Nice in June for the inaugural Optical Innovation Forum, co-produced by Huawei and Light Reading.
    Wagner’s Ring
    Data Centers Drive Telcos Into the Future

    8|28|14   |   2:20   |   (2) comments


    Data centers are at the heart of key trends driving telecom -- network virtualization, the drive for increased agility, and the need to compete with OTT providers.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Why SPs Should Consider Cisco's EPN

    8|27|14   |   5:40   |   (0) comments


    Sultan Dawood from Cisco discusses Cisco's EPN, which enables SPs to build agile and programmable networks delivering new network virtualized services using Cisco's Evolved Services Platform (ESP).
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei’s Showcase @ Big Telecom Event 2014

    8|26|14   |   2.56   |   (0) comments


    SoftCOM is Huawei's framework for telecom business and network transformation. Haofei Liu, Solution Marketing Manager, Carrier Business Group, Huawei, showcases Huawei's SoftCOM architecture in this video.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei @ BTE 2014: Director of Integrated Solutions on SoftCOM & NFV Monetization

    8|26|14   |   4.43   |   (0) comments


    Libin Dai, Director of Integrated Solutions, Carrier Business Group, discusses Huawei's SoftCOM and NFV monetization. Huawei believes that NFV monetization should be service-driven rather than network-driven, and that operators should have network transformation, service transformation and a compatible and collaborative ecosystem in place in order to deploy NFV.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei @ BTE 2014: Director of US NFV Lab on CloudEdge & the Future of NFV

    8|26|14   |   4.06   |   (0) comments


    Sean Chen, Director of US NFV Lab at Huawei, discusses Huawei's new approach to NFV in open collaboration. Huawei believes that through Proof of Concept tests, it could help operators learn and communicate with the industry more effectively. Sean believes that successful implementation of NFV should have its values reaching to end users and discusses how Huawei's ...
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei's Highlights @ Big Telecom Event 2014

    8|26|14   |   3.34   |   (0) comments


    At the Big Telecom Event in Chicago Huawei showcases its high-level strategy, the SoftCOM architecture, which helps operators reduce the cost of ownership of their network infrastructure and generate additional revenue in the ICT service environment. Huawei showcases over 30 pilot programs from across the globe, focusing on the industry-leading commercial ...
    Upcoming Live Events!!
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    September 23, 2014, Denver, CO
    October 29, 2014, New York City
    November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
    November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
    December 2, 2014, New York City
    December 3, 2014, New York City
    December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
    June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
    Infographics
    A survey conducted by Vasona Networks suggests that 72% of mobile users expect good performance all the time, and they'll blame the network operator when it's not up to par.
    Today's Cartoon
    Vacation Special Caption Competition Click Here
    Latest Comment
    Hot Topics
    Introducing 'The New IP'
    Stephen Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 9/11/2014
    AT&T to Launch WiFi Calling in 2015
    Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/12/2014
    Is Rackspace the Best Next Move for CenturyLink?
    Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 9/9/2014
    Nokia Jumps Into 4G Small Cell Mosh Pit
    Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 9/8/2014
    T-Mobile Accuses Huawei of Espionage
    Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/9/2014
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed