Server Fabric enables one-click network connections from virtual machines to any data center resource-including servers, networks, storage and other virtual machines.
Xsigo Systems, which makes
that virtualizes and accelerates throughput
in enterprise networks, Aug. 15
unveiled its own server fabric software that the company claims is the
industry's "first fully virtualized infrastructure" for cloud-optimized
Xsigo's succinctly named
Server Fabric enables one-click network connections from virtual machines to
any data center resource-including servers, networks, storage and other virtual
machines-to simplify and accelerate management of virtualized data centers,
Xsigo marketing director Jon Toor told eWEEK.
A server fabric is the set
of consistent services offered by one or more switches working together in a
storage network. Any node connected to any switch in a fabric sees exactly the
same information about the network.
Xsigo's server fabric is
designed to ease hardware constraints on the agility and scalability of the
cloud. It can scale to up to 1,000 physical hosts, Toor said.
"This [data center
networking] has always been very complex; because you have to configure your
paths through multiple switches to get from server A to server Z, you have to
use things like VLANs [virtual local networks] to provide isolation on those
paths ... in a network," Toor told eWEEK.
"VLANs were designed to
solve this on a large network basis, not on a server-to-server basis-especially
when it comes to the mobile environments we have now. We're seeing customers
complain that they're getting hamstrung by the current way of doing
Xsigo Server Fabric
virtualizes hardware-independent connectivity between resources so that
administrators can configure switches, switch ports, VLANs and routing in short
order-enabling management tasks to be completed by a single person in minutes
using the software, rather than by multiple teams over the course of hours or
The Xsigo Server Fabric lets
customers flexibly deploy Ethernet and Fibre Channel connections at speeds up
to 40Gbps. Environments can be scaled to a ceiling of 1,000 physical hosts with
tens of thousands of virtual connections linking virtual machines to each other
or to network and storage resources, Toor said.
The Server Fabric is fully interoperable
with existing core networking products from Cisco, Brocade, Juniper and others,
"Of the fundamental
data center building blocks-servers, storage, and the connectivity that ties it
all together-only network connectivity remains as it was 20 years ago, locked
to an inflexible and inefficient switch and port-based management model,"
Yankee Group analyst Zeus Kerravala said. "The cloud-computing era places
demands on data center infrastructure that cannot be met through traditional
networking technologies. Xsigo's fabric technology changes all this by
addressing the desperate market need to fully integrate resources using a
server fabric, while also providing unprecedented levels of simplification
The Xsigo Server Fabric
consists of multiple Xsigo components available now: Xsigo I/O Director, Xsigo
XMS Management Software and Xsigo Fabric Extenders, together with a software
upgrade package called the SFS 1.0 Server Fabric Suite. The upgrade package
includes host drivers, a management software plug-in, and operating software
designed specifically to deliver the enhanced features and scalability of the
Xsigo Server Fabric.
The SFS 1.0 Server Fabric
Suite will be available in December 2011. It is licensed on a per-physical-host
basis at a list price of $1,000 per host.