Vendor Landscape: Data Center Networking
Innovation and differentiation in a maturing market.
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Last Revised: April 2, 2012
View Vendor Shortlist
What is a shortlist?
A shortlist is a personalized list of vendors based on the criteria you define. Your shortlist offers more information about vendor's strengths, weaknesses, price-points, etc, and ranks them according to your needs.
What is a Value Score?
The Value Score indexes each vendor’s product offering and business strength relative to their price point. It does not indicate vendor ranking.
Vendors that score high offer more bang for the buck (e.g. features, usability, stability, etc.) than the average vendor, while the inverse is true for those that score lower.
Price-conscious enterprises may wish to give the Value Score more consideration than those who are more focused on specific vendor/product attributes.
- Server virtualization has led to efficiency and resiliency improvements, but as servers and hypervisors can handle more virtual machines, network connections are being stressed.
- Until recently, 10Gbps Ethernet was the prevailing standard. That was enough bandwidth when server consolidation ratios were 15:1, but at 80:1, a 10Gbps uplink to the core isn’t enough.
- 40Gbps and 100Gbps Ethernet standards have been ratified, and switches now have the intelligence to recognize virtual machines, their port configurations, and the ability to migrate port configurations when virtual servers move.
- IPv6 support and hot swapping capabilities are more important than ever as a single line card may be connecting over 100 servers to the network.
- Network virtualization is becoming a Table Stake in an era where fewer physical servers can handle more and more virtual servers.
- OpenFlow has emerged as a standard, and will make workload optimization easier than ever before, allowing network administrators to build VLANs across public and private clouds.
Impact and Result
- Increase your available throughput at your top of rack, end of row, and core switches. 40Gbps is available at the core from many vendors, with 100Gbps on the way from most soon.
- Make the network more efficient by using network virtualization and OpenFlow protocols to reduce management overhead, and manage with greater visibility.
Get to Action
Assess data center networking vendor feature sets and viability
Determine which vendors best suit your data center networking needs.
Use your requirements to set evaluation priorities
Develop a custom shortlist based on data center networking criteria most important to your infrastructure.