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Running Fibre Channel over 10Gb Ethernet

The data center consolidation movement received a big push at the Grapevine, TX, and Frankfurt, Germany, Storage Networking World shows as several vendors demonstrated how SAN traffic can be natively transported over Ethernet networks using the Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) protocol. This means servers could use the same interface for data and storage networking, as well as a single set of cables and switches.

"FCoE requires the use of a new class of converged network adapters that appear to the operating system like a Fibre Channel HBA [FC host bus adapter] and an Ethernet NIC [network interface card] consolidated into a single adapter," says Jeff Benck, QLogic's president and COO.

Emulex, too, demoed converged network adapters compatible with 10Gb Ethernet that are expected to be available in the first half of next year. Also participating in FCoE demos were Network Appliance and Cisco-backed Nuova Systems.

--Rich Friedman

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