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Access "The best way to scale SANs"

Published: 29 Oct 2012

The consolidation of servers and business units is a tsunami crashing on most IT departments today. Consolidation and conservation of storage resources is rapidly becoming a focus, but how best to scale up today's storage area networks (SANs) to larger and more utility-like storage networks is unclear. @exb Option 1: A meshed SAN A meshed SAN is easy to create, but doesn't scale past a few switches because inter-switch links consume ports. @exe If you interconnect small switches into a meshed fabric (see "Option 1: A meshed SAN" on this page), the number of required inter-switch links (ISLs) grows quickly with the number of included switches, limiting the number of ports available on the fabric. In fact, with five 16-port switches, each with a single ISL, 25% of the available ports in the fabric are used up. Meshing 17 switches would require every port in the fabric. Instead, most SAN equipment manufacturers and consultants are recommending a so-called core/edge design, placing a few high-capacity switches--often called directors--in the center of a star ... Access >>>

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