Understand 10 Gigabit Ethernet cables and switches

This article introduces the technical know-how that will be needed in the future based on the research results accumulated in Sakura Internet Research Institute, which is studying the technology to be used for the future three to five years ahead ( Last time). Let’s take a look at the 10 Gigabit Ethernet NIC cable, connector and switch equipment.

Understand the 10 GbE cable

There are currently three choices when connecting 10 Gigabit Ethernet NICs and switches. Twinax cable with SFP+ module and copper set, 10GBASE-T (Cat 7) used as an RJ45 connector, and SPF+ module using optical fiber (Figure 1).

You can not extend the distance between Twinax Cable and Cat 7 cable that connects with metal cable compared to optical fiber. When using in the data center it is a good idea to connect between the Top of Rack (ToR) Switch and Server.

Fig. 1 10 GbE cable and connector module shape
Fig. 1 10 GbE cable and connector module shape
Fig.2 Shield shape of the 10GbE connector
Fig.2 Shield shape of 10GbE connector

The cable for 10 GbE has a strong shielding even if you see only the RJ 45 cable up to now (Figure 2). I do not have any difficulty in handling as much as a fiber optic cable, but you will need to understand firmly what is different from the cable for 1 GbE to date. Which one of SFP+ or RJ45 is selected depends on the site of the network design, but if you worry about cable length, we recommend you to select the SFP+ shape.

Understand the 10 GbE switch

The 10 GbE switch is finally entering the diffusion period, products from each company have come together. Let’s look at an example here. Currently, the most multi-port 10 GbE switch in 1U size, 64 port equipment has already been provided (Figure 3). As long as this is multiport, it is possible to accommodate enough servers for one 19-inch rack, and it is also easy to extend the system.

Figure 3 64-Port 10 GbE Switch System (Mellanox SX 1016)
Figure 3 64-Port 10 GbE Switch System (Mellanox SX 1016)

In anticipation of future prospects, models with 40 GbE Port and 10 GbE Port mixed also came out (Figure 4). As a system configuration, these switches will be effective when constructing a network with sufficient bandwidth with mixed IP-SAN (Storage Area Network) and LAN. In addition, with the recent increase in storage system SSD, it seems that many IP-SAN products will be connected in the future.

Figure 4 48 – Port 10 GbE + 12 – Port 40 GbE Switch (Mellanox SX 1024)
Figure 4 48 - Port 10 GbE + 12 - Port 40 GbE Switch (Mellanox SX 1024)

There is a new movement also in the 40 GbE switch. Currently, before product shipment, the 12-Port 40 GbE switch came out (Figure 5). This product was a 1U half size small, it was introduced that it can transform into 48 port 10 GbE switch by using 10/40 GbE Breakout Cable. Future enhancement of 10 / 40GbE products is indispensable for fully utilizing the performance of storage such as CPU and SSD which continues to be high speed, and as a system engineer, it is necessary to deepen understanding in advance.

Figure 5 12-Port 40 GbE Switch (Mellanox SX 1012)
Figure 5 12-Port 40 GbE Swithc (Mellanox SX 1012)


Original Article Source from https://codezine.jp, Author: 松本 直人