Network technologies and trends

Oct 31 2011   5:10AM GMT

Cisco Systems announces the new Fabric 2 modules for Cisco Nexus 7000 Series switches

Yasir Irfan Yasir Irfan Profile: Yasir Irfan

Cisco Systems announces the new Fabric 2 modules for Cisco Nexus 7000 Series switches.  The newly announced Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Fabric-2 Modules for the Cisco Nexus 7000 Series chassis are separate fabric modules that provide parallel fabric channels to each I/O and supervisor module slot. From a scalability perspective, the new Fabric 2 module, enables the deployment of up to 768, 10 GbE ports in a Nexus 7000 chassis. The Fabric 2 module can deliver up to 550 Gbps per slot of performance. The new module also delivers connectivity, for only 9 watts of power per port.

Through the parallel forwarding architecture, a system capacity of more than 15 Tbps is achieved with the five fabric modules. The fabric module provides the central switching element for fully distributed forwarding on the I/O modules.

The newly announced  Fabric 2 modules for Cisco Nexus 7000 Series switches is available for Cisco Nexus 7009, 7010 and 7018 Chassis. It seems Cisco Systems are coming out with a 9 slot chassis for Nexus 7000 Series Switch. The Fabric 2 module in combination with the supervisor and I/O modules supports virtual output queuing (VOQ) and credit-based arbitration to the crossbar switch to increase performance of the distributed forwarding system. VOQ and credit-based arbitration facilitate fair sharing of resources when a speed mismatch or contention for an uplink interface exists. The fabric architecture also enables future support for lossless Ethernet and unified I/O capabilities.

Some of the features and befits of the Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Fabric Modules are as follows

Feature Benefit
High availability and redundancy The fabrics support multilevel redundancy, where all available fabrics are active, and provide redundancy for all other fabric modules. All I/O module slots receive a fair share of the total fabric bandwidth, helping ensure lossless forwarding in the event of failover.
Scalable fabric The combined fabric modules deliver 10 channels per I/O module and 5 channels per supervisor module, for a scalable capacity of more than 15 Tbps for forwarding performance, which can be increased as your needs grow.
Nondisruptive addition and removal of fabric modules The switch capacity can scale with the addition of modules, with transparent upgrades for continuous operations.
Arbitrated crossbar for unicast Class-of-service-aware forwarding is delivered in a fully distributed forwarding system that allows future enhancements to Ethernet to support unified I/O.
VOQ In conjunction with the supervisor module, VOQ provides a quality-of-service (QoS) aware lossless fabric, avoiding the problems associated with head-of-line blocking.
Multistage crossbar fabric System forwarding performance is enhanced by a combination of local fabric switching between ports on the same module and centralized forwarding through the fabric for ports on different modules.
Superframing and frame segmentation Crossbar efficiency is optimized by the use of superframing and frame segmentation to provide deterministic latency and throughput.
ID LED Using the beacon feature, the administrator can clearly identify the chassis and fabric module.

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