FC (Fibre Channel)
What hardware and components are possible with Fibre Cannel?
in a SAN based on Fibre Channel as well as come in a normal network switches, routers and other connection devices used. The located on the server expansion cards are also called HBA(host bus adapter). They are often operated in a PCI Express interface of the mainboard. The storage systems are then connected to one another via fiber optic cables or copper cables. The maximum transfer rate is roughly 1.6 GB/s, but it could also be lower. The products are sold in a graduation of 1, 2, 4, 8, 10 and 16 Gbit/s. Another similarity to the default network are the WWNN (World Wide Node Name) and WWPN (World Wide Port Name) identifiers. They are used to uniquely identify a device or a port and are thus comparable to the classical MAC addresses. The representations of these identifiers is almost exclusively in hexadecimal form.
How important is a topology?
The topology defines the manner laid how the devices are interconnected. A basic distinction between three types:
Point To Point (short FC - P2P)
This is the simplest topology, since simply only two devices are directly connected. Thus, only these two devices can communicate with each other, which is why it is often used in smaller networks, which nevertheless should take advantage of the speed of Fibre Channel to process large amounts of data.
Arbitrated loop(FC -AL short)
As the name suggests, the ports of the devices are connected together here in a ring. It can only have one pair of ports to communicate directly with each other and an interruption of the connection interrupts the whole ring. This type of connection is often used as an entry-level solution, as it is an inexpensive way to connect multiple nodes (eg server) to a storage system. Here also, a stroke could occur as a connection device for use, as this would logically form a ring, but prefers the failure of a port no interruption of the entire ring by itself.
Switched Fabric(FC -SW short)
This refers to the most powerful and ausfallsicherste topology. It has very strong similarities to the Ethernet network and can for example The use of switches to. To increase the data rate, it is further possible to use a plurality of HBAs in a server and simultaneously to use. To increase the reliability multiple switches can be used and interconnected. This then communicate with each other and provide for example the failure of a device that the traffic diverted and so between the terminals will still work.
What should the purchase of Fibre Channel products to be considered?
Fibre Channel hardware and components are very developed and already implemented in the hardware. Therefore, it should necessarily be taken to ensure compatibility. Thus, devices from different manufacturers are sometimes not be used together. In addition, the hardware only two versions are always backward compatible. A 16 Gb/s HBA support including 8 and 10, but not 4 Gb/s