Brocade Flattens Out
Today, Brocade Communications Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: BRCD) announced its Ethernet fabric for data centers. Using a technology called virtual cluster switching, Brocade says it can make the network treat its fabric switches as if they were one switch, theoretically simplifying the management of the data center.
Brocade's first fabric switch will be the VDX 6720, available in 24 or 60 10Gbit/s Ethernet ports and due to ship around the end of the year.
Why this matters
The collapsing of the data center -- removing layers of aggregation, at least from the network management standpoint -- has been a strong theme with Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR). Brocade's announcement is along similar lines, but Brocade might have a more flexible offering, because the vendor says its Ethernet fabric can work with someone else's network cores. Cisco's Universal Computing System (UCS) is a single-vendor data-center architecture. Juniper's Stratus fabric appears to be one as well, but Juniper isn't releasing details until next year.
Here's some further reading on the vendors' grand plans for next-generation data centers.
- Brocade Preaches Data Center Nirvana
- Brocade Takes Aim at Nexus
- Juniper's Stratus: Wait 'Til Next Year
- Juniper Gets 'New' With Data Centers
- Juniper's Ready for Stratus
- Cisco Preps for Olympics Trial
- Cisco: HP, IBM Had Their Chance
- Juniper Takes Over the Network
- IBM, Juniper Become BFFs
- Cisco Dreams of Data Center Unity
- Juniper Strikes at the Data Center
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading