Ethernet Alliance completes data center plugfest

June 1, 2009--The Ethernet Alliance has summarized results of the Ethernet in the Data Center subcommittee interoperability plugfest for IEEE 802.1 Data Center Bridging (DCB), held May 4-8 at the University of New Hampshire Interoperability Lab (UNH-IOL).

June 1, 2009--The Ethernet Alliance has summarized results of the Ethernet in the Data Center subcommittee interoperability plugfest for IEEE 802.1 Data Center Bridging (DCB), held May 4-8 at the University of New Hampshire Interoperability Lab (UNH-IOL). Member participants--including Cisco, Dell, Finisar, Fulcrum Microsystems, Intel, NetApp, QLogic and Spirent Communications--successfully conducted multi-vendor interoperability testing of DCB utilizing 10GBase‑SR and 10GBase-LR optical interfaces.

In the first phase, participants completed individual tests of specific DCB features, such as Priority-based Flow Control (IEEE P802.1Qbb), Enhanced Transmission Selection (IEEE P802.1Qaz), and DCB Capability Exchange Protocol (IEEE P802.1Qaz). The second testing phase included building a large DCB-based network and exercising higher layer protocols, such as Fibre Channel over Ethernet and iSCSI.

This was the first time multiple vendors had participated in testing products based upon the IEEE 802.1 DCB draft standards. Participants were able to demonstrate the interoperability of their products and participate in a lossless Ethernet fabric simultaneously on the same network. These plugfests help to review the IEEE 802.1 DCB draft standards and to create interoperable products.

"The IEEE 802.1 DCB draft standards offer significant improvements in how data moves through Ethernet networks and permits convergence of multiple traffic types onto a single network," says Brad Booth, Ethernet Alliance chairman. "Ethernet Alliance-sponsored plugfests help to prove the feasibility of the technology, to demonstrate interoperability, and to prepare for the development of certification criteria."

On the Web: www.ethernetalliance.org

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