Force10 Networks has expanded its product line with a new
virtualization–friendly Gigabit Ethernet switch called the S60. As mentioned in
this report on The Register, companies are deploying Gigabit Ethernet switches
at the tops of their server racks but increasing utilization of servers creates
'rogue waves' on network ports that can swamp Gigabit Ethernet switches.
"A port coming out of the server and going into the switch might burn only
10Mb/sec of bandwidth supporting two virtual machines, but when you push it up
to four to ten VMs, you're talking somewhere around 200Mb/sec with spikes that
get a bit higher than that, and once you are up to 20 VMs you're pushing Gigabit
speeds with spikes that can be significantly higher due to the 'bursty' nature
of multimedia and storage applications running in the data center these days.
"The fix for congestion is not necessarily to move to 10 Gigabit switches,
according to Force10, but rather to push line rates in a Gigabit switch and give
the device ultra-deep buffering to cope with those momentary rogue waves on the