Ask the Expert

Digital to optical switch conversion

This is a Q&A from SAN School Lesson 2.
Click here for more SAN School lessons.

Does every frame get converted from digital to optical through the switch?

Requires Free Membership to View

Yes, that is the function of the GBIC (gigabit interface converter) on every switch port. The light pulses coming into the switch are converted to digital data, the switch looks into each frame to find the destination address, routes the data to the correct switch port that is attached to the target and the GBIC on the target port converts the signal back into light pulses for re-transmission to the target. This all happens extremely fast. Within the next ten years, I expect to see optical switches on the market that will eliminate that requirement. Optical or "photonic" switches will be able to move terabytes of data per second. Chris

Editor's note: Do you agree with this expert's response? If you have more to share, post it in one of our .bphAaR2qhqA^0@/searchstorage>discussion forums.

This was first published in February 2004

There are Comments. Add yours.

TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to: