Rackspace deploys Brocade Gen 5 Fibre Channel SAN solutions in data center network

Rackspace has completed the deployment of Brocade Gen 5 Fibre Channel SAN solutions across its data center network.

Besides accommodating customer growth, the new Gen 5 Storage Area Network (SAN) has helped the data center company achieve better density, flexibility and scale in connecting to EMC storage arrays, resulting in increased efficiency and productivity at each data center.

Rackspace deployed Brocade Gen 5 Fibre Channel director-class switches to simplify their SAN infrastructure and create a denser environment that enables more ports per square foot of data center space and to facilitate the company’s move to a campus-style data center model.

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Brocade Gen 5 Fibre Channel SAN switches are now deployed in eight of Rackspace’s data centers across three continents as a foundation to connect EMC storage and Dell servers to their customer’s remote IT environments.

Sean Wedige, CTO, Enterprise Solutions, at Rackspace, said: “We worked with Brocade and EMC Corporation to design a SAN fabric that was easy to grow and manage, while providing the flexibility to allow our data center technicians to connect any device to any switch in the fabric.”

“In addition to improved reliability and availability, the new Brocade SAN fabric has allowed us to use less space and power, supporting our green initiatives, while allowing us better utilization of our physical facilities,” Wedige added.

With Brocade, Rackspace simplified the SAN designs for each data center and maximized port utilization, eased deployment constraints and met customer requirements for delivering the company’s Fanatical Support.

With their SAN design, Rackspace links multiple Brocade 8510 directors together using Brocade’s UltraScale Inter-Chassis Links (ICLs), allowing front-facing ports to be connected to EMC VMAX enterprise storage arrays, increasing scalability and architectural flexibility.

Four 16 Gbps optical Fibre Channel cables provide up to 64 Gbps connectivity between each Brocade 8510 director. Brocade UltraScale ICLs can connect up to ten Brocade DCX 8510 Backbones at distances of up to 100 meters, enabling simpler fabrics that increase consolidation while reducing network complexity and costs.

Rackspace is now working to deploy other Brocade Fabric Vision features, including Flow Vision and ClearLink diagnostics.

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