4GB Fibre-Channel Products Promise Speed at SNW

New form factors, performance enhancement and interoperability are featured in the Storage Networking World offerings from Cisco and other vendors.

Two companies introduced products for the 4GB Fibre Channel environment Wednesday at Storage Networking World.

ATTO Technology Inc. of Amherst, N.H., announced the ATTO Fibre Bridge 2400C/R/D, a 4GB Fibre Channel-to-SCSI bridge designed to integrate SCSI devices into a Fibre Channel network.

The FibreBridge 2400 features two 4GB Fibre Channel host interface ports and uses the Ultra320 SCSI protocol.

Other features include a Web-based GUI for remote configuration, management, upgrades and monitoring; a real-time event log; and embeddable 4U compact-PCI and desktop 1U form factors that allow users to choose the most appropriate form factor for their environments, according to Sherri Robinson, ATTO Technologys director of marketing.

The bridge also includes SpeedWrite, a performance-enhancing capability that allows users to achieve faster backups and higher throughput, Robinson said.

Also announcing a 4GB product was Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. of Camarillo, Calif. Vitesse announced the VSC8228, a multirate 125M bps to 4.25G bps bidirectional repeater retimer. The product also supports Gigabit Ethernet, ESCON (Enterprise Systems Connection), Infiniband and SONET/SDH (Synchronous Optical Network/Synchronous Digital Hierarchy) data rates.

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The VSC8228 monitors analog and digital aspects of the transmitted signal to provide alarms for events such as loss of signal, and helps with rate negotiation. It also offers programmable input-signal equalization and output pre-emphasis, and adjustable output swing helps optimize the signal integrity and power dissipation over a given trace distance.

Cisco Systems Inc. of San Jose, Calif., announced FC NAT (Fibre Channel Network Address Translation), its InterVirtual SAN (storage area network) routing function for SAN routing.

Available as part of the Cisco MDS 9000 SAN-OS 2.1, FC NAT allows users to route between multivendor SANs without address limitations. It also enables SAN consolidation and resource-sharing between SANs without reconfiguring the existing infrastructure. Users also can extend FC NAT on the Cisco MDS 9000 across long distances using techniques like IP, optical networks and dark fibre.

Along with FC NAT, Cisco announced native interoperability with QLogic blade-server switches, allowing organizations to consolidate blade-server storage resources.

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Also announcing new products at SNW today was Xyratex Ltd. of Havant, England, which introduced an ultrahigh density near-line mass storage system for OEMs. Called Model 4835, the mass storage system provides more than 14TB of storage in less than 7 inches of rack space.

Initial releases support up to 48GB x 300GB SATA drives and either one or two controllers per enclosure, but future releases will support 500GB SATA drives delivering a total of 24TB per enclosure, said Steve Thompson, Xyratexs chief technical officer.

Xyratex also introduced a 3U 16-drive SAS (Serial-Attached SCSI) expander-based storage enclosure offering up to 48TB of SAS expandability and up to six enclosures.

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