Many data center applications make use of IP multicast, and scalability is a concern. Extreme’s Summit x650 is a clear leader, successfully forwarding traffic to 6,000 groups. According to ComputerWorld, The Arista and HP switches were next, each forwarding traffic to 2,047 groups with Cisco’s Nexus behind them with 2,000 groups.
Dell’s Power Connect 8024F had the lowest average join and leave times, followed closely by the Arista and Blade switches. However, Arista’s 7124S was more consistent across the board, with the least variation between average and maximum join and leave times. This is largely a function of control-plane processing power, and reflects Arista’s use of a dual-core 1.8-GHz x86 CPU, a powerful processor for a top-of-rack switch.
The HP and Cisco switches had much higher join and leave delays than other devices. In the worst case, Cisco’s switch took nearly 23 seconds to process a leave message for one group and averaged about 10 seconds to process each leave message. The Nexus join times were much lower, in the low hundreds of milliseconds.