Category Archives: Switch & Transceiver

What’s the Difference Between HBA, NIC and CNA?

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HBA, NIC and CNA are three types adapters used in computer networking system. All perform to connect servers to switches, then what’s the differences between them? In this blog, knowledge of HBA, NIC and CNA will be provided.

HBA – Host Bus Adapter
Host bus adapter is a hardware device, such as a circuit board or integrated circuit adapter, that provides I/O processing and physical connectivity between a host system, such as a server, and a storage device. The HBA transmits data between the host device and the storage system in a SAN and relieves the host microprocessor of the tasks of storing data and retrieving data. The result of which is to improve server performance. HBAs are most commonly used in Fibre Channel (FC) SAN environments and are also used for connecting SCSI and SATA devices.

what is hba

NIC – Network Interface Card
Short for Network Interface Card, the NIC is also referred to as an Ethernet card and network adapter. It is an expansion card that enables a computer to connect to a network. Most new computers have either Ethernet capabilities integrated into the motherboard chipset, or use an inexpensive dedicated Ethernet chip connected through the PCI or PCI Express bus. A separate NIC is generally no longer needed. If the card or controller is not integrated into the motherboard, it may be an integrated component in a router, printer interface or USB device.

nic

CNA – Converged Network Adapter
A converged network adapter (CNA), also called a converged network interface controller (C-NIC), is a computer input/output device that combines the functionality of a host bus adapter (HBA) with a network interface controller (NIC). In other words, it “converges” access to, respectively, a storage area network and a general-purpose computer network. The CNA connects to the server via a PCI Express (PCIe) interface. The server sends both FC SAN and LAN and traffic to an Ethernet port on a converged switch using the Fiber Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) protocol for the FC SAN data and the Ethernet protocol for LAN data. The converged switch converts the FCoE traffic to FC and sends it to the FC SAN. The Ethernet traffic is sent directly to the LAN.

cna

What’s the Difference Between HBA, NIC and CNA?
In large enterprise companies, main servers usually have (at least) two adapters – FC HBA and Ethernet NIC to connect to the storage network (Fiber Channel) and computer network (Ethernet). CNAs converge the functionality of both the adapters into one.

hba-nic-and-cna
As you can see from the picture below, with the set up in the first diagram, two separate adapters are required on the server to connect to Ethernet based Computer Network and FC based Storage Network respectively. But the set up in the second diagram requires just one adapter (Converged Network Adapter – CNA) which carries both Ethernet traffic as well as FCOE traffic in a single cable. This cable connects to one of the Ethernet ports in the Converged Switch that has both Ethernet as well as Fiber Channel ports. This Converged Switch converts the FCOE traffic in to Fiber Channel traffic to be sent to the FC SAN over the Fiber Channel Network. The computer network traffic is directly sent to the LAN over the Ethernet Network.

Conclusion
Compared to use both HBA and NIC, using a single CNA to connect servers to storage and networks reduces costs by requiring fewer adapter cards, cables, switch ports, and PCIe slots. Besides, CNAs also reduce the complexity of administration because there is only one connection and cable to manage. To connect CNAs to your ToR or EoR switches can over both SFP+ SR (optical) or SFP+ direct attach copper cable. To connect CNAs to your servers can over Cat6 cables. All these cabling solutions can be provided in FS.COM. All at low price and high quality!

Related Article: Are White Box Switches Equal to OEM Switches?

Related Article: What’s the Difference: Hub vs Switch vs Router

Compatible Cisco 2960 SFP for Cisco 2960 Series Switches

Cisco Catalyst 2960 series switches are available in 2960, 2960-S, 2960-SF, 2960-X and many other types. The Cisco 2960-S and 2960-SF series are the newest members of the 2960 family that offer a rich set of Layer 2 features. The 2960-S provides Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000) connectivity with 10G/1G SFP+ uplinks, and the 2960-SF provides Fast Ethernet (10/100) connectivity with 1G SFP uplinks. This blog mainly introduced the knowledge of 2960-SF series switches and their compatible Cisco 2960 SFP modules.
Cisco 2960
Cisco Catalyst 2960-SF Series Switches Overview
Cisco Catalyst 2960-SF series switches deliver secure and reliable LAN access for branch and medium-sized campus deployments. They enable reliable and secure business operations and lower total cost of ownership through a range of innovative features including FlexStack, Power over Ethernet Plus (PoE+), and Cisco Catalyst SmartOperations. These series switches include 7 models. 5 models with LAN Base Software and 2 models with LAN Lite Software.

Cisco Catalyst 2960-SF Series Switches with LAN Base Software
Switch Model Description Uplinks Available PoE Power
2960S-F48FPS-L 48 Ethernet 10/100 ports with PoE+ 4 SFP 740W
2960S-F48LPS-L 48 Ethernet 10/100 ports with PoE+ 4 SFP 370W
2960S-F24PS-L 24 Ethernet 10/100 ports with PoE+ 2 SFP 370W
2960S-F48TS-L 48 Ethernet 10/100 ports 4 SFP
2960S-F24TS-L 24 Ethernet 10/100 ports 2 SFP
Cisco Catalyst 2960-SF Series Switches with LAN Lite Software
2960S-F48TS-S 48 Ethernet 10/100 ports 2 SFP
2960S-F24TS-S 24 Ethernet 10/100 ports 2 SFP

What’s the Difference Between the LAN Base and LAN Lite Switches?
The Cisco 2960-SF switches support the LAN Base and the LAN Lite software feature sets. The LAN Base feature set comes with advanced Layer 2(L2) features and is typically targeted at large enterprise customers. The LAN Lite feature set has entry-level L2 features and is targeted at mid market deployments. Following are the notable hardware differences:

  • Ease of management with Cisco FlexStack
  • Power of Ethernet (PoE/PoE+) capabilities
  • Increased number of VLANs
  • A wider selection of Small Form-Factor Pluggable (SFP) ports

Compatible Cisco 2960 SFP for Cisco 2960-SF Series Switches
By consulting the Cisco 100-Megabit Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet SFP Modules Compatibility Matrix, I get following compatible Cisco 2960 SFP models that supported for 2960-SF series switches.

Compatible Fast Ethernet SFP Modules for Cisco 2960-SF Series Switches
Network Device Transceiver Model Description
2960S-F48TS-S

2960S-F24TS-S

GLC-GE-100FX 100BASE-FX SFP 1310nm 2km
GLC-FE-100FX 100BASE-FX SFP 1310nm 2km DOM
Compatible Gigabit Ethernet SFP Modules for Cisco 2960-SF Series Switches
Network Device Transceiver Model Description
2960S-F48TS-S

2960S-F24TS-S

2960S-F48FPS-L

2960S-F48LPS-L

2960S-F24PS-L

2960S-F48TS-L

2960S-F24TS-L

GLC-T 1000BASE-T Copper RJ-45 100m
GLC-TE 1000BASE-T Copper RJ-45 100m
GLC-SX-MM 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m
GLC-LH-SM 1000BASE-LX/LH SFP 1310nm 10km
GLC-SX-MMD 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM
GLC-LH-SMD 1000BASE-LX/LH SFP 1310nm 10km DOM
GLC-EX-SMD 1000BASE-EX SFP 1310nm 40km DOM
Network Device Transceiver Model Description
2960S-F48FPS-L

2960S-F48LPS-L

2960S-F24PS-L

2960S-F48TS-L

2960S-F24TS-L

GLC-ZX-SM 1000BASE-ZX SFP 1550nm 70km
GLC-ZX-SMD 1000BASE-ZX SFP 1550nm 70km DOM
GLC-BX-D BiDi SFP 1490nm-TX/1310nm-RX 10km
GLC-BX-U BiDi SFP 1310nm-TX/1490nm-RX 10km
CWDM SFP 1270nm-1610nm (20nm spacing)

Conclusion
Cisco 2960-SF Ethernet switch enables a wide range of business or residential applications and services. FS.COM offers all above Cisco compatible transceiver with reasonable prices and high performance. All those products are tested before shipping to ensure high quality. For more details, please visit www.fs.com or contact us via sales@fs.com.

Related Article: Compatible Transceivers for Cisco Catalyst 4948E Switch

Compatible SFPs for Ubiquiti EdgeSwitch and UniFi switch

The Ubiquiti EdgeSwitch targets the Broadband / ISP / Carrier market, which offers an extensive suite of advanced layer-2 switching features and protocols, and also provides layer-3 routing capability. The UniFi switch targets the Enterprise / SMB market, which is designed for a wider IT audience, and therefore, tend to be simpler, and easier to use. Both these two types Ubiquiti switchs are supported for SFP fiber connectivity and widely used among people. However, which SFPs can I use with my EdgeSwitch or UniFi switch? This article may give the answer on ubiquiti SFP compatibility.

Which Ubiquiti EdgeSwitch Should I Use?

The EdgeSwitch offers the forwarding capacity to simultaneously process traffic on all ports at line rate without any packet loss. The EdgeSwitch provides total, non-blocking throughput. Among 8-Port model up to 10 Gbps, 16-Port model up to 18 Gbps, 24-Port model up to 26 Gbps and 48-Port model up to 70 Gbps. The following table lists the comparison between EdgeSwitch modules, according to your specific need to choose the right one.

Model Total Non-Blocking Throughput Gigabit RJ45 Ports SFP+ Ports SFP Ports Max. Power Consumption
ES- 8- 150W 10 Gbps 8 N/A 2 150W
ES- 16- 150W 18 Gbps 16 N/A 2 150W
ES- 24- 250W 26 Gbps 24 N/A 2 250W
ES- 24- 500W 26 Gbps 24 N/A 2 500W
ES- 48- 500W 70 Gbps 48 2 2 500W
ES- 48- 750W 70 Gbps 48 2 2 750W
ES- 24- LITE 26 Gbps 24 N/A 2 25W
ES- 48- LITE 70 Gbps 48 2 2 56W
ES- 12F 16 Gbps 4 N/A 12 56W
ES- 16- XG 124 Gbps 4 12 N/A 56W
EdgeMAX – Which SFPs are compatible with EdgeSwitch?

The ubnt edgeswitch provides fiber connectivity options for your growing networks. The 8, 16, and 24-port models include two SFP ports, providing up to 1 Gbps uplinks. For high-capacity uplinks, the 48-port models include two SFP and two SFP+ ports, providing uplinks of up to 10 Gbps. Take the ES‑8‑150W for example, it has 8 Gigabit RJ45 ports and 2 Gigabit SFP ports for 10G applications (shown in the figure below). For SFP ports, we should use SFP modules and fiber patch cable.

edgeswitch
According to an article titled “Which SFPs are compatible with the EdgeSwitch?”published in Ubiquiti Help Center, the following SFP transceivers are compatible with EdgeSwitch (only listed can be found in Fiberstore here).

SFP Model Description
Cisco GLC-SX-MM 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m Transceiver
Cisco GLC-SX-MMD 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM Transceiver
HP J4858C 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM Transceiver
HP J4858A 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM Transceiver
Cisco GLC-LH-SM 1000BASE-LX/LH SFP 1310nm 10km Transceiver
HP J4859B 1000BASE-LX SFP 1310nm 10km DOM Transceiver
HP J4859C 1000BASE-LX SFP 1310nm 10km DOM Transceiver
Cisco GLC-T 1000BASE-T SFP Copper RJ-45 100m Transceive
Cisco SFP-H10GB-CU1M 1m 10G SFP+ Passive Direct Attach Copper Twinax Cable
Brocade 10G-SFPP-TWX-0101 1m 10G SFP+ Passive Direct Attach Copper Twinax Cable
Which Ubiquiti UniFi Switch Should I Use?

The UniFi POE switch offers the forwarding capacity to simultaneously process traffic on all ports at line rate without any packet loss. For its total, non-blocking throughput, the 24port model supports up to 26 Gbps, while the 48-port model supports up to 70 Gbps. The following table lists the comparison between UniFi switch modules, according to your specific need to choose the right one.

Model Total Non-Blocking Throughput Gigabit RJ45 Ports SFP+ Ports SFP Ports Max. Power Consumption
US- 8- 150W 10 Gbps 8 N/A 2 150W
US- 16- 150W 18 Gbps 16 N/A 2 150W
US- 24- 250W 26 Gbps 24 N/A 2 250W
US- 24- 500W 26 Gbps 24 N/A 2 500W
US- 48- 500W 70 Gbps 48 2 2 500W
US- 48- 750W 70 Gbps 48 2 2 750W
UniFi – Which SFPs are compatible with UniFi Switch?

Each model includes two SFP ports for uplinks of up to 1 Gbps. The 48port model adds two SFP+ ports for high-capacity uplinks of up to 10 Gbps, so you can directly connect to a highperformance storage server or deploy a longdistance uplink to another switch. Take the US- 8- 150W for example, it has 8 Gigabit RJ45 ports and 2 Gigabit SFP ports for 10G applications (shown in the figure below). For SFP ports, we should use SFP modules and fiber patch cable.

us-8-150w
According to an article titled “Which SFPs can I use with UniFi switch?”published in Ubiquiti Help Center, the following SFP transceivers are compatible with EdgeSwitch. Since among some SFP module types are the same as the EdgeSwitch, I only list the different SFPs here.

SFP Model Description
Fiberstore SFP-1G85-5M

Now: SFP1G-SX-85

1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m DOM Transceiver
Cisco SFP-10G-SR 10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM Transceiver
Fiberstore SFP-10G85-3M

Now:
SFP-10GSR-85

10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM IND Transceive
Ubiquiti SFP Compatibility: Ubiquiti Compatible SFPs in Fiberstore

Fiberstore (FS.COM) provides a series of Ubiquiti compatible SFP transceivers that can be used with EdgeSwitch and UniFi switch. In Ubiquiti Networks Community SFP modules compatibility section, some people tested Fiberstore SFP modules in their EdgeSwitch. As shown in the figure below, SFP1G-SX-85, SFP1G-SX-31 and SFP-10GSR-85 SFPs are working.

sfp-modules-compatibility

Related Article: 3rd Party Optical Transceivers vs OEM Switch Warranty

How to Choose SFP+ Transceivers for Cisco 4500 Series Switch

The Cisco 4500 series switches provide high performance, mobile, and secure user experiences through Layer 2-4 switching investments. Since they have a centralized forwarding architecture that enables collaboration, virtualization, and operational manageability through simplified operations, therefore, more and more people choose to use 4500 series switch in their network. As we know, once we use a network switch, we may use some transceiver modules. In this article, some SFP+ transceivers that supported for Cisco 4500 series switch will be introduced.

Cisco 4500 Series Switch Overview
Cisco 4500 series switch include 4500 Series and 4500E Series switch. Among, 4500 series include Catalyst 4503 Switch, Catalyst 4506 Switch, Catalyst 4507R Switch, Catalyst 4510R Switch. With forward and backward compatibility spanning multiple generations, the new Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series provides exceptional investment protection and deployment flexibility to meet the evolving needs of organizations of all sizes, which include Catalyst 4503-E Switch, Catalyst 4506-E Switch, Catalyst 4507R+E Switch and Catalyst 4510R+E Switch. SFP+ ports operate in full-duplex mode and are present on the WS-X4516-10GE and WS-X4013+10GE supervisors, as well as some line cards. These ports use the 10GBASE-SR, 10GBASE-LRM and 10GBASE-LR SFP+. SFP+ connectors vary with interface type and may use multimode fiber (MMF) or single-mode fiber (SMF) cable.

cisco 4500

Supervisor Engine for Cisco 4500 Series Switch
The Cisco supervisor engine is the brain of many of Cisco’s switches, which refers to specific modules that can be placed in a modular chassis. Cisco 4500 series and 6500 series switch both require supervisor engines to work. In fact, the transceivers type depends on the port type of supervisor engine. So, it’s necessary to identify the port type of your supervisor engines first. In following table, I display some supervisor engines that both supported for Catalys 4500 series switch and SFP+ transceivers. Please note that WS-X4516-10GE, WS-X4013+10GE, WS-X45-Sup6-E, WS-X45-Sup6L-E and WS-X4606-X2-E can also be used for X2 transceivers with CVR-X2-SFP10G converter.

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Supervisor Engine V-10GE
WS-X4516-10GE 2×10 Gigabit Ethernet (X2 or SFP+) or 4X1 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP)
Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Supervisor Engine II-Plus-10GE
WS-X4013+10GE 2x10GE (X2 or SFP+) and 4×1 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP)
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Supervisor Engine 6-E And 6L-E
WS-X45-Sup6-E 2×10 Gigabit Ethernet (X2 or SFP+) or 4×1 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP), Console RJ-45, USB
WS-X45-Sup6L-E 2×10 Gigabit Ethernet (X2 or SFP+) or 4×1 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP), Console RJ-45
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Line Cards
WS-X4606-X2-E 6×10 Gigabit Ethernet (X2 or SFP+)
WS-X4712-SFP+E 12×10 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP+)
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Supervisor Engine 7-E And 7L-E
WS-X45-SUP7-E 4×10 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP+)
WS-X45-SUP7L-E 2×10 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP+) or 4×1 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP)
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Supervisor Engine 8-E And 8L-E
WS-X45-SUP8-E 8×10 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP+)
WS-X45-SUP8L-E 4×10 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP+) or 4×1 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks (SFP)

SFP+ Transceivers for Cisco 4500 Series Switch
According to Cisco 10-Gigabit Ethernet Transceiver Modules Compatibility Matrix, all supervisor engines mentioned above can support SFP-10G-SR, SFP-10G-LRM, SFP-10G-LR, SFP-10G-SR-S and SFP-10G-LR-S SFP+ transceivers. Besides, WS-X4712-SFP+E, WS-X45-SUP7-E, WS-X45-SUP7L-E, WS-X45-SUP8-E and WS-X45-SUP8L-E can also support SFP-10G-ER, SFP-10G-ZR, SFP-10G-ER-S and SFP-10G-ZR-S SFP+ transceivers. All SFP+ transceievrs can be found in FS.COM.

WS-X4516-10GE, WS-X4013+10GE, WS-X45-Sup6-E, WS-X45-Sup6L-E, WS-X4606-X2-E, WS-X4712-SFP+E, WS-X45-SUP7-E, WS-X45-SUP7L-E, WS-X45-SUP8-E and WS-X45-SUP8L-E
SFP-10G-SR Cisco SFP-10G-SR Compatible 10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM Transceiver, $ 16
SFP-10G-LRM Cisco SFP-10G-LRM Compatible 10GBASE-LRM SFP+ 1310nm 220m DOM Transceiver, $ 34
SFP-10G-LR Cisco SFP-10G-LR Compatible 10GBASE-LR SFP+ 1310nm 10km DOM Transceiver, $ 34
SFP-10G-SR-S Cisco SFP-10G-SR-S Compatible 10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM Transceiver, $ 16
SFP-10G-LR-S Cisco SFP-10G-LR-S Compatible 10GBASE-LR SFP+ 1310nm 10km DOM Transceiver, $ 34
WS-X4712-SFP+E, WS-X45-SUP7-E, WS-X45-SUP7L-E, WS-X45-SUP8-E and WS-X45-SUP8L-E
SFP-10G-ER Cisco SFP-10G-ER Compatible 10GBASE-ER SFP+ 1550nm 40km DOM Transceiver, $ 180
SFP-10G-ZR Cisco SFP-10G-ZR Compatible SFP+ 1550nm 80km DOM Transceiver, $ 400
SFP-10G-ER-S Cisco SFP-10G-ER-S Compatible 10GBASE-ER SFP+ 1550nm 40km DOM Transceiver, $ 180
SFP-10G-ZR-S Cisco SFP-10G-ZR-S Compatible 10GBASE-ZR SFP+ 1550nm 80km DOM Transceiver, $ 400

Related Articlea:

How to Choose SFP+ Transceivers for Cisco 4500 Series Switch

Cisco SFP-10G-SR: All You Need to Know



How to Achieve 10GB in Your Home Lab Under $70?

A lot of small to medium businesses haven’t made the transition over to 10Gb speeds from the typical 1Gb (at least around where I live), let alone us homelabbers, because of it’s cost. Even with “cheaper” 10GBASE-T switches coming out, like the D-Link DXS-1210-12TC, $1,470 is still a lot more than most of us can convince our wives to let us spend on one. Also, do you have 10Gb NICs on your hosts and NAS/SANs? What about the right cables? These things aren’t cheap.

Inspired by a Reddit post I found over on the /r/homelab subreddit, I decided to try a 10Gb point-to-point connection between my ESXi host (a Dell PowerEdge R520) and my HP ProLiant DL320e that I’m using as my mini-SAN (running Windows Server 2016 TP4). For those that don’t know, a point-to-point connection is a small network between two endpoints or clients, so no switch is needed. My switch (an HP ProCurve 2920) doesn’t have the 10Gb modules needed but I wanted the 10Gb connection between my ESXi host and SAN anyway, so a P2P connection between those two would be perfect.

The NICs talked about in the /r/homelab thread were used HP Mellanox ConnectX-2 10GbE NICs you can find on eBay for SUPER cheap (currently $18.78 each on eBay) connected via this 10GBASE SFP+ cable for $22.94 shipped. I found the NICs to be widely supported but I couldn’t find a lot of information on just how supported they are on the newest operating systems. My host is running ESXi 6 while my ProLiant is running Windows Server 2016 TP4, but for a total of about $65, it was worth the risk of not being supported.

10GBASE SFP+ cable

UPDATE: Thanks to Reddit user /u/negabiggz for mentioning that these Mellanox ConnectX-2 NICs do not work under FreeNAS. If you’d still like to create a cheap 10Gb P2P connection in FreeNAS, you can pick up these Chelsio S310E-CR 10Gb NICs on eBayor (shown in figure below) wait till the drivers are natively supported in version 10.1.

Chelsio S310E-CR 10Gb NICs

About a week after placing the orders for the NICs and cable, these two beautiful pieces of used hardware came in along with the SFP+ cable. I immediately took the R520 and ProLiant DL320e out of my rack and got them both easily installed. I fired both machines up and got what every sysadmin and/or homelabber loves to see: both NICs working properly out of the box. Turns out ESXi 6 AND Server 2016 TP4 really do support these cheap, beautiful NICs without the need to install/uninstall/reinstall a ton of different drivers.

maul

This is a screenshot of the 10Gb NIC on my ProLiant right after booting it up and configuring the static IP.

esxi
This is a screenshot of the NIC on my ESXi host after booting it up and getting the other NIC configured on my 2016 TP4 box.

I haven’t done a lot of speed tests to get the official read/write speeds, but I have added the 10Gb NIC to my media downloading VM and transferred a few 720p TV episode files between them and my ProLiant. I tried to take a screenshot of the transfer rate when I copied over a 1GB 720p episode of a TV show I downloaded (legitimately, I swear!), but the screen never came up. I didn’t even get a chance to screenshot it. It was like I just moved the video between folders on the same drive. I also configured an iSCSI connection using the 10Gb link and performance so far has been great.

So there you have it. An awesome 10Gb speed on your homelab all for under $70. Thanks to the /r/homelab community for the idea and for suggesting the hardware, especially for those of us that didn’t want to convince our wives why we need to spend hundreds of dollars so we can transfer files using a puny 1Gb connection.

Source: https://thatservernerd.com/2016/02/23/10gb-in-your-homelab-for-under-70

How to Connect NETGEAR 10G Switch to Your Network?

With the growth of virtualization, cloud-based services and applications like VoIP, video streaming and IP surveillance, SMB networks need to extend beyond simple reliability to higher speed and performance. The NETGEAR ProSAFE XS712T and ProSAFE XS728T switches present the right solution for this requirement, delivering unprecedented non-blocking 10G bandwidth at an affordable cost. Have you ever used NETGEAR 10Gb switch in your network? This article may provide the knowledge of NETGEAR 10G switch deployment and its interface requirement.

NETGEAR 10G Switch Overview
As shown in the figure below, the NETGEAR ProSAFE XS712T and ProSAFE XS728T are powerful smart managed switches that come with either 12 or 24 10G copper ports and either 2 combo SFP+ (XS712T) or 4 additional dedicated SFP+ ports (XS728T) for 10G fiber links. Using these 10G slots, you can create high-speed connections to a server or network backbone. For example, you can connect switches to each other with high-speed links or link them to high-speed servers. Please note that the XS712T can provide 100M/1000M/10G copper connectivity, but the XS728T can only provide 1000M/10G copper connectivity. Fast Ethernet is not available for XS728T switch.

netgear 10g switch

How to Connect NETGEAR 10G Switch to Your Network?
The NETGEAR ProSAFE XS728T and XS712T switch is designed to provide flexibility in configuring your network connections. It can be used as your only network traffic-distribution device or with 100 Mbps (XS712T only ) , 1000 Mbps, and 10 Gbps hubs and switches.

  • Connecting devices to the switch via RJ-45 copper port

The RJ-45 copper ports of the NETGEAR ProSAFE 10G series switch comply with IEEE 10GBase-T standards. It is backward compatible, auto-negotiating between higher and lower speeds. You can use Category 5e (CAT 5e) or better Ethernet cable (CAT 6, CAT 6a, or CAT 7) to make 10G connections. AMONG, CAT5/CAT5E are supported for Gigabit speeds up to 100 meters. CAT6 twisted pair copper cabling supports 10-Gigabit speeds up to 45 meters. CAT6A or newer CAT7 cabling will allow for up to 100 meter 10GBase-T connections. Desktop switching of NETGEAR ProSAFE XS728T is shown in the figure below.

NETGEAR ProSAFE 10G Series

  • Connecting devices to the switch via SFP+ fiber port

To enable you to use fiber connections on your network (shown in the figure below) , two combo SFP+ ports of XS712T switch and four dedicated SFP+ ports of XS728T switch accommodate standard 1000M and 10G SFP+ transceiver modules. Please note that not all SFP or SFP+ transceiver modules are aavailable for NETGEAR ProSAFE 10G series switch. Following table may give you some guidance for transceiver modules option.

Backbone switching
SFP /SFP+ transceiver modules and SFP+ cables supported for ProSAFE XS712T and XS728T switch

MFG PART# Description
AGM731F NETGEAR 1000BASE-SX 850nm SFP, up to 550m
AGM732F NETGEAR 1000BASE-LX 1310nm SFP, up to 10km
AXM761 NETGEAR 10GBASE-SR 850nm SFP+, up to 300m
AXM762 NETGEAR 10GBASE-LR 1310nm SFP+, up to 10km
AXM763 NETGEAR 10GBASE-LRM 1310nm SFP+, up to 220m (XS712T only)
AXM764 NETGEAR10GBASE-LR Lite 1310nm SFP+, up to 2km
AXC761 1m NETGEAR SFP+ to SFP+ Passive Copper Cable
AXC763 3m NETGEAR SFP+ to SFP+ Passive Copper Cable

Interface Support for the QFX3500 Switch

The high-performance Juniper Networks QFX3500 Switch addresses a wide range of deployment scenarios, which include traditional data centers, virtualized data centers, high-performance computing, network-attached and iSCSI storage, FCoE convergence, and cloud computing. This article may display some specific interfaces used for QFX3500 Switch. Hope it can help you complete your network installation and deployment.

QFX3500 Switch Overview
There are Forty-eight 10-Gbps access ports in the device use small form-factor pluggable plus (SFP+) transceivers and operate by default as 10-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces. Optionally, you can choose to configure up to 12 of the ports as 2-Gbps, 4-Gbps, or 8-Gbps Fibre Channel (FC) interfaces, and up to 36 of the ports as 1-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces (shown in the picture below). When used as a standalone Ethernet switch, four 40-Gbps uplink ports in the device use quad small form-factor pluggable plus (QSFP+) to four SFP+ copper breakout cables to support an additional 15 10-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces.

QFX3500 Switch

QFX3500 Switch Data Center Deployments
Today’s data centers are built with high-performance, small form-factor, multi-core blade and rack servers. The greater compute capacity and server densities enabled by these devices is increasing traffic levels, creating the need for a high speed, low latency, storage- and I/O-converged networking solution that can maximize performance for physical servers, virtual servers, and storage in the data center. The QFX3500 Switch delivers the ultra low latency, lossless high density 10GbE interfaces, and FCoE Transit Switch and FCoE-FC Gateway functionality demanded by today’s data center—all in a compact form factor designed to support high-performance, converged data center access networks. The QFX3500’s low power consumption optimizes the switch’s power use effectiveness (PUE) ratio to reduce data center operating costs, while front-to-back air flow meets hot and cold aisle isolation requirements.The following picture shows a QFX3500 high-performance Ethernet L2 and L3 access deployment scenario.

QFX3500 Switch Data Center Deployments

Interface Requirement for the QFX3500 Switch
The 48 small form-factor pluggable plus (SFP+) access ports in the QFX3500 device support SFP and SFP+ transceivers, as well as SFP+ direct-attach copper (DAC) cables. For added configuration flexibility, up to 36 of the QFX3500’s 48 pluggable SFP+ ports can be used in 10GbE or 1GbE mode with up to 18 of the 1GbE ports being copper. The remaining 12 ports can be used to support 2, 4, or 8 Gbps Fibre Channel modes as well as 10GbE. The four quad small form-factor pluggable plus (QSFP+) uplink ports in the QFX3500 device support QSFP+ transceivers, as well as QSFP+ DAC and DAC breakout cables. When the QFX3500 device is operating as a standalone switch, each QSFP+ port can be configuredto operate as 10-GigabitEthernet interfaces or a single 40-Gigabit Ethernet interface. By default, the uplink ports on a standalone switch are configured as 10-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces.

1000 Mbps SFP transceiver modules available for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Max transmission distance
QFX-SFP-1GE-T Juniper 1000BASE-T SFP Copper Transceiver, RJ-45 Connector 100 m (328.08 ft)
QFX-SFP-1GE-SX Juniper 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm Transceiver, LC Connector 550 m (1804.46 ft)
QFX-SFP-1GE-LX Juniper 1000BASE-LX SFP 1310nm Transceiver, LC Connector 10 km (6.21 miles)

2GFC, 4GFC, and 8GFC Fibre Channel SFP+ module for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Max transmission distance
QFX-SFP-8GFC-SW Juniper 8G Fibre Channel SFP+ 850nm Transceiver, LC Connector 150 m (429.13ft)

10G SFP+ transceiver modules available for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Max transmission distance
QFX-SFP-10GE-USR Juniper 10GBASE-USR SFP+ 850nm Transceiver, LC Connector 100 m (328.08 ft)
QFX-SFP-10GE-SR Juniper 10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm Transceiver, LC Connector 300 m (984.25 ft)
QFX-SFP-10GE-LR Juniper 10GBASE-LR SFP+ 1310nm Transceiver, LC Connector 10 km (6.21 miles)
QFX-SFP-10GE-ER Juniper 10GBASE-ER SFP+ 1550nm Transceiver, LC Connector 40 km (24.86 miles)

10G SFP+ cables available for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Cable length
QFX-SFP-DAC-1M Juniper SFP+ 10 Gigabit Ethernet Direct Attach Copper (passive twinax copper cable) 1 m (3.28 ft)
QFX-SFP-DAC-3M Juniper SFP+ 10 Gigabit Ethernet Direct Attach Copper (passive twinax copper cable) 3 m (9.84 ft)
QFX-SFP-DAC-5M Juniper SFP+ 10 Gigabit Ethernet Direct Attach Copper (passive twinax copper cable) 5 m (16.40 ft)
QFX-SFP-DAC-1MA Juniper SFP+ 10 Gigabit Ethernet Direct Attach Copper (active twinax copper cable) 1 m (3.28 ft)
QFX-SFP-DAC-3MA Juniper SFP+ 10 Gigabit Ethernet Direct Attach Copper (active twinax copper cable) 3 m (9.84 ft)

40G QSFP+ transceiver modules available for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Max transmission distance
QFX-QSFP-40G-SR4 Juniper 40GBASE-SR4 QSFP+ 850nm Transceiver, MPO Connector 150 m (492.13 ft)
QFX-QSFP-40G-ESR4 Juniper 40GBASE-SR4 QSFP+ 850nm Transceiver, MPO Connector 400 m (1312.34 ft)
JNP-QSFP-40G-LX4 Juniper 40GBASE-LX4 QSFP+ 1310nm Transceiver, LC Connector 2 km (1.24 miles)

40G QSFP+ cables available for the QFX3500 switch

MFG PART Description Cable length
QFX-QSFP-DAC-1M Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ passive DAC cable 1 m (3.28 ft)
QFX-QSFP-DAC-3M Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ passive DAC cable 3 m (9.84 ft)
QFX-QSFP-DAC-5M Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ passive DAC cable 5 m (16.40 ft)
JNP-QSFP-DAC-5MA Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ active DAC cable 5 m (16.40 ft)
JNP-QSFP-DAC-7MA Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ active DAC cable 7 m (22.97 ft)
JNP-QSFP-DAC-10MA Juniper 40-Gbps QSFP+ active DAC cable 10 m (32.81 ft)
QFX-QSFP-DACBO-1M Juniper 40G QSFP+ to four SFP+ passive DAC breakout cables 1 m (3.28 ft)
QFX-QSFP-DACBO-3M Juniper 40G QSFP+ to four SFP+ passive DAC breakout cables 3 m (9.84 ft)

Do You Know about Active Optical Cable (AOC Cable)?

Bandwidth usage is soaring, driven by the proliferation of Internet-connected devices. At this time, active optical cable (AOC cable) has emerged. Besides, the market of AOC cables keeps growing and has a broad prospect. What’s active optical cables? Why should we use it? In this article, some knowledge of active optical cables will be provided.

Introduction to Active Optical Cable (AOC Cable)
Active optical cable (AOC) is used for short-range multi-lane data communication and interconnect applications. Usually, the wire transmission of optical communication should belong to passive part, but AOC is an exception. AOC consist of multimode optical fiber, fiber optic transceivers, control chip and modules. It uses electrical-to-optical conversion on the cable ends to improve speed and distance performance of the cable without sacrificing compatibility with standard electrical interfaces. Since people expect more information to be available at their fingertips, our communications systems will need to be quicker, and AOC is one of the best solutions to solve this problem. Compared with direct attach copper cable for data transmission, AOC provides more advantages, such as lighter weight, high performance, low power consumption, low interconnection loss, EMI immunity and flexibility. At present, AOC is widely used in many fields as well as promoting the traditional data center to step into optical interconnection.

AOC cable

Differences Between Passive/Active DAC and Active Optical Cable (AOC Cable)
Passive cabling provides a direct electrical connection between corresponding cable ends. Active cables provide the same effect but, by embedding optics and/or electronics within the connectors, can overcome some of the limitations of passive cables. While passive cables are always copper-based, active cables can use either copper wire or fiber optics to provide the link between the cable ends. The picture below shows us the leading types of passive and active cables for data center.

Differences Between PassiveActive Copper and Active Fiber

 Why Use Active Optical Cable (AOC Cable)?
Primarily, active optical cable (AOC) assemblies were invented to replace copper technology in data centers and high performance computing (HPC) applications. As we know, copper passive twinax cable is heavy and bulky, making it difficult to physically manage the datacenter. And due to the nature of electrical signals, electromagnetic interference (EMI) limits copper’s performance and reliability. Though there are so many disadvantages of copper cable, at that time, it is the main stream while the idea of AOC cables almost seems too good to be true. However, the advantages of AOC cables make the predecessors look obsolete and unsophisticated, and changes the limitation of copper passive twinax cable as well as playing an important role in high speed data transmission. Nowadays, a variety of active optical cable have been launched in the market, such as 10G SFP+ AOCs, 40G QSFP+ to QSFP+ AOCs, 40G QSFP+ to 4 SFP+ breakout AOCs and ,40G QSFP+ to 8xLC breakout AOCs.

Active Optical Cable

Conclusion
FS.COM active optical cables achieve high data rates over long reaches which are the best solutions for high-performance computing and storage applications. We provide many AOC products such as 10G SFP+ AOCs, 40G QSFP+ AOCs, QSFP+ to 4 SFP+ AOCs, and QSFP+ to 8 x LC AOCs. In addition, customized active optical cables are available in various lengths, Cisco compatible and other options. For more detailed information, please visit www.fs.com or contact us over sales@fs.com.

Related Articles:

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40G Network Connectivity Solutions

Active Optical Cable (AOC) – Rising Star of Telecommunications

Why Not Choose a PoE Switch?

The Power over Ethernet (PoE) lets Ethernet cables supply the power for network devices, at the same time as transmitting data in the normal way. Typical PoE users are businesses adding to their network or adding VoIP phones in buildings where new power lines would be expensive or inconvenient. So why not choose a PoE switch? PoE switches give you an easy way to add PoE devices to your network. The plug-and-play switches will automatically detect whether connected devices are PoE or PoE+ and send power accordingly. Choose managed PoE switches to control multiple devices from the data center. For simpler operations, choose more economical unmanaged PoE switches is enough. Now, let’s get close to PoE and PoE switches.

What Is Power over Ethernet?
Power over Ethernet is a technology that lets network cables carry electrical power. For example, a digital security camera normally requires two connections to be made when it is installed. One is a network connection, in order to be able to communicate with video recording and display equipment. Another is a power connection, to deliver the electrical power the camera needs to operate. However, if the camera is POE-enabled, only the network connection needs to be made, as it will receive its electrical power from this cable as well.

Currently, there are two standards approved by the IEEE. The first, approved in 2003, is IEEE 802.3af and specifies up to 15.4 watts of direct current (DC) power. The second standard, ratified in 2009 as IEEE 802.3at, is commonly called high power PoE (HPoE) or PoE+ and doubles the power capabilities to 30 watts. Both standards have a maximum distance of 100 meters (328 feet) that is dictated by the distance limitation of Ethernet network cable. The 48VDC voltage used in plain old telephone service (POTS) analog circuits is what is commonly used for today’s PoE systems.

Upgrade to PoE with a PoE Switch
A basic PoE-based system usually consists of three main components: power-sourcing equipment (PSE), such as a PoE switch, category network cable and remote-powered devices, which may be an IP camera, IP access panel, IP intercom, VoIP or wireless access point (WAP). PSE is the most critical one among them, which is a device that injects power onto the same network cable that is being used for data. The injector can be a stand-alone single-port or multiport device, or the injector can be built into a network switch, which is called a PoE switch. The second option is more common today due to the convenience of using a single integrated device. PoE switch is not just handling data transmission, but also serving as the centralized power source for the video surveillance system. Therefore, upgrade your network to PoE is straightforward, and you just need to choose a PoE switch. Following figure is a 8 port PoE switch.

20170106120557_913

How to Choose a PoE Switch?
Although PoE is primarily designed as a plug-and-play technology, not all PoE switches are designed to deliver the full demands of maximum PoE on each port. PoE switches are sold at different price points and applications, from low-cost unmanaged edge switches with a few ports, up to complex multi-port rack-mounted units with sophisticated management. It’s easy to make a purchase decision based on the lowest price. However, the cheaper PoE switch will typically have a less robust power supply and may not provide the full power required by PoE endpoints. Therefore, selecting the right PoE switch for a job can be challenging. Following are some simple guidance that might help.

Firstly, you should make sure how many ports you need to support your PoE devices. After finding a PoE switch that will provide suitable power conditions on a per-port basis, there is another element to consider—power budget. For example, you bought four cameras to use four cameras, not to use just one or two. Then will the switch you choose provide enough power per port for each camera? Will the switch provide suitable power to all ports at all times? Finally, after considering space in your panel, power demands of one device, power ability of a switch for one port, and powering ability of a switch across all ports, you are prepared to make a decision!

Choose PoE Switch

Conclusion
The power consumption for PoE switches can add up quickly when there are multiple IP cameras, access control devices, outdoor heater/blowers, etc. The keys to choosing a right PoE switch is to make sure that the network switch can provide the necessary wattage of PoE that will be needed for each device, and that the aggregate wattage necessary to power all devices simultaneously is available. Fiberstore provides PoE switches in a variety of specifications, which may make your trip as comfortable as possible. For more information, please feel free to contact us at sales@fs.com.

SFP+ Active and SFP+ Passive Twinax Cable

Twinax cable is a type of cable similar to coaxial cable. The difference is that there are two inner conductors other than on in coaxial cable. This kind of cable is commonly used for very short range high speed differential signaling applications. There are basically two types of twinax cable for 10G Ethernet: SFP+ active and SFP+ passive twinac cable.

Currently there is a copper 10 Gigabit Ethernet cables which comes in either an active or passive Twinax cable assembly and connects directly into an SFP+ housing. SFP+ cable is a twinax cable with SFP+ connector at each end. An active twinax cable has active electronic components in the SFP+ housing to improve the 10 Gig Ethernet signals quality. A SFP+ passive twinax cable is just a direct attach cable and contains no active components to boost signal.

SFP+ Passive  Direct Attach Twinax cable is suitable for very short distances. They are rated for a range up to 5m and provide a good working solution at a great cost. When the distance between connection points exceed 5m. It is highly recommended to use active cable to ensure signals are transmit all the way through. 5m as the boundary is not absolute, as it may vary from vendor to vendor. For example, FS.COM 10G SFP+ passive twinax cable can be the optimum solution for 10G Ethernet reaches up to 12M.

Except the transmission length, there is indeed no visual difference between SFP+ active and passive twinax copper cable. SFP+ connectors are the same and the cable jackets are also identical. Most manufactures including FS.COM will have some sort of marking on the cable connector head which will identify the cable as active or passive. But it is also not simply to tell by just looking at it.

The major applications of SFP+ twinax cable are working with network hardware with SFP+ slot. FS.COM SFP+ cables can be compatible with major brands such as Cisco, HPL, Juniper, Extreme, H3C etc. This type of connection is able to transmit at 10 Gigabit/second full duplex speeds over 12 meter distances. What’s more, this setup also offers 15 to 25 times lower transceiver latency than current 10GBASE-T Cat6/CAT6a/Cat7 cabling systems.