Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric
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Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric

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HP FlexFabric delivers high-performance data center networking specifically designed to meet the stringent scalability, performance, and resiliency requirements of today's and tomorrow's virtualized ...

HP FlexFabric delivers high-performance data center networking specifically designed to meet the stringent scalability, performance, and resiliency requirements of today's and tomorrow's virtualized compute, storage, and cloud service environments.

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Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Document Transcript

  • Technical white paper Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Designing for tomorrow's virtualized data center Table of contents Executive summary ...................................................................................................................................................................... 2 Business drivers: virtualization, cloud computing, big data ................................................................................................. 2 Greater scalability ..................................................................................................................................................................... 3 Improved resiliency .................................................................................................................................................................. 3 Greater performance................................................................................................................................................................ 3 High-performance WAN routing ............................................................................................................................................ 3 HP FlexFabric: simplified, scalable, automated ...................................................................................................................... 4 Flexible deployment models .................................................................................................................................................. 4 HP FlexFabric core data center switch and WAN router platforms .................................................................................... 5 Core/distribution switches ...................................................................................................................................................... 5 WAN routers ............................................................................................................................................................................... 6 Breakthrough scalability, reliability, and economics ............................................................................................................. 6 HP Intelligent Resilient Framework ...................................................................................................................................... 6 Shortest Path Bridging and Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links .................................................................. 7 Data Center Bridging and Fibre Channel over Ethernet .................................................................................................... 7 Ethernet Virtual Interconnect ................................................................................................................................................. 7 Multitenant Device Context..................................................................................................................................................... 8 Non-stop forwarding/graceful restart ................................................................................................................................. 8 High-availability architecture and in-service software upgrades .................................................................................. 8 Independently confirmed performance and reliability ......................................................................................................... 8 HP FlexFabric 12910 ................................................................................................................................................................ 9 HP FlexFabric 11908-V .......................................................................................................................................................... 10 HP HSR6808............................................................................................................................................................................. 11 Conclusion ..................................................................................................................................................................................... 12
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Executive summary Virtualization, cloud computing, and big data are transforming the data center and creating significant capacity planning and network engineering challenges for IT organizations. Legacy data center networks originally designed to support conventional client-server applications can’t meet the performance, scalability, or availability demands of today’s highly virtualized compute environments. HP’s FlexFabric data center fabric architecture is specifically designed to meet the stringent scalability, performance, and resiliency requirements of today’s and tomorrow’s virtualized compute, storage, and cloud environments. By tightly integrating intelligent access switches, high-capacity core switches and routers, and end-to-end management solutions FlexFabric delivers new levels of design and operational simplification, and industry-leading density, scale, and performance for next-generation data center networks. This white paper is intended for data center network architects and planners and reviews the impact of virtualization and cloud computing on the data center and illustrates the recent validation testing completed by Network Test on the newest additions to HP’s FlexFabric portfolio – HP FlexFabric 12900, 11900, and HP HSR6800 routers. These new data center switching and routing products together with HP’s flagship FlexFabric 12500 provide a complete, end-to-end portfolio that can help your IT organization build flatter, more efficient, and cost-effective data center networks that address the stringent performance and scalability requirements of today’s highly virtualized, on-demand service environments. Business drivers: virtualization, cloud computing, big data The fundamental nature of data center computing is rapidly evolving. All over the world, enterprises are turning to cloud services, virtualization solutions, and high-performance computing to boost service velocity and business agility, support big data and analytics, and improve data center economics. Conventional monolithic compute silos are giving way to highly virtualized, converged IT environments that reshape data center traffic flows and dramatically affect data center network designs. Historically, most IT organizations implemented monolithic data center architectures to support the needs of specific client-server applications. A unique IT silo—with distinct compute, networking, and storage resources—was dedicated to each business application. But advances in information technology—increasingly powerful multi-core servers, virtualization solutions, distributed computing frameworks—have ushered in a new era of computing. Forward-looking IT organizations are consolidating compute, network, and storage resources and employing virtualization solutions and cloud-based services to improve business agility, eliminate IT sprawl, and contain CAPEX and OPEX. Next-generation IT architectures require a fundamentally new networking model. Legacy data center networks built to support conventional client-server applications can’t meet the performance and availability demands of today’s highly virtualized compute environments. They make inefficient use of network resources, don’t scale in a linear fashion, and aren’t well suited for the high bandwidth, low-latency server-to-server traffic flows that dominate the contemporary data center. Traditional data center networks are based on over-subscribed hierarchical designs with distinct access, aggregation and core layers. The access layer is comprised of Ethernet top-of-rack (ToR) switches connecting servers and IP-based storage devices (typically 100Mbps or 1 GbE connections). The access switches are connected to a set of aggregation switches (typically 10 GbE), which in turn are connected to a layer of core switches that forward traffic between aggregation layers, and core routers that forward traffic outside the data center to the Internet or private WANs. Figure 1. Conventional tiered data center network Core tier Aggregation tier Access tier Dedicated servers Cloud services, virtualization, and high-performance computing are reshaping traffic flows, increasing traffic volumes, and driving requirements for next-generation data center networks that offer greater scalability, resiliency, and performance. 2
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Greater scalability The adoption of denser multi-core servers with 10 GbE (and in due course 40 GbE) network interfaces and the implementation of server virtualization technology are increasing bandwidth demands and pushing legacy networks to the brink. Blade servers are packing more and more computational power into smaller and smaller form-factors. Virtualization solutions are driving more and more traffic in and out of a given server, extending control plane and data plane capacity requirements. Next-generation data center networks require high capacity, high port-density switches to cost-effectively accommodate skyrocketing traffic growth. Improved resiliency Many legacy networks rely on some variant of the spanning tree protocol (STP) for resiliency. Designed to avoid loops, traditional Ethernet bridging protocols such as STP squander bandwidth, utilizing only one active path between switches at any given point in time, regardless of how many actual physical connections might exist. Worse still, STP can take several seconds to recover from link failures and is not well suited for delay-sensitive applications. Next-generation data center networks must employ more efficient and resilient protocols that make full use of networking resources (no idle backup paths) and recover from failures in milliseconds to meet the stringent availability and performance demands of the new virtualized data center. Greater performance Legacy data center networks were adequate for traditional client-server environments where most of the computation was performed on a single host and the majority of the traffic flowed in and out of the data center, to and from clients. But virtualization and high-performance computing are radically transforming data center traffic flows (see Figure 2). In today’s data center, workloads are often distributed across multiple servers and the vast majority of traffic stays within the data center, flowing within and between servers (so-called east-west traffic). Workloads are often divided into smaller tasks and processed in parallel on separate physical or virtual machines (VMs). And VMs can migrate from server to server for business continuity or disaster recovery. Web clusters, database clusters, clustered file systems, VMware® VMotion™, MapReduce processing, and other contemporary computing functions all make extensive use of messaging and data movement/replication and require low latency, lossless, predictable server-to-server connectivity. Legacy hierarchical networks aren’t well suited for high-volume, server-to-server communications. Server-to-server traffic is forced to traverse multiple layers of switches, and each switch adds latency to the connection. Next-generation data centers require flat, low-latency networks to accommodate delay sensitive, volume-intensive, east-west traffic flows. Figure 2. Virtualized IT architectures are reshaping data center traffic flows W E N App 1 App 1 App 2 App 2 App 3 App 2 App 3 S Traditional Monolithic IT Architecture Converged/Virtualized IT Architecture High-performance WAN routing Next-generation networks must deliver highly scalable, secure, and reliable WAN and Internet connectivity services for cloud tenants, mobile users, and remote offices. Private and public clouds require high performance, high-capacity routing solutions that are based on high-availability architectures, offer cost-effective scalability, and deliver comprehensive routing features (MPLS, IPv4, IPv6) and rich security capabilities (stateful firewall, VPN, NAT, DoS prevention). 3
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric HP FlexFabric: simplified, scalable, automated HP’s FlexFabric data center fabric architecture consists of intelligent access switches, high-capacity core switches and routers, and end-to-end management solutions that work in concert to provide new levels of design and operational simplification, along with industry-leading density, scale, and performance. FlexFabric delivers the predictable performance, high availability, and comprehensive management needed to enable large-scale virtualization and convergence implementations, and support a range of IT deployment models—including cloud computing, web hosting, and managed services. With FlexFabric your IT organization can build an agile, high-performance infrastructure that reduces TCO, improves service velocity, aligns IT resources with business demands, and mitigates risks. Figure 3. HP FlexFabric architecture Flexible deployment models A highly flexible and extensible architecture, FlexFabric not only supports traditional hierarchical network designs, but also gives you the option of collapsing your network architecture from three to two tiers to consolidate systems, improve overall network performance, decrease end-to-end latency, simplify operations, and contain equipment, power, cooling and space costs. Figure 4. Collapsed two-tier architecture reduces CAPEX and OPEX; ensures high throughput and low latency 4
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric HP FlexFabric core data center switch and WAN router platforms HP FlexFabric networking solutions include high-performance core switching and WAN routing platforms that deliver breakthrough scale and economics. Core/distribution switches HP FlexFabric modular switch portfolio includes the HP FlexFabric 12500, 12900, and 11900 data center core/distribution switches, which are ideal for small to large enterprise data centers. HP FlexFabric 12500 is a modular core data center switch that offers a blend of performance, scalability, and density. HP FlexFabric 12900 complements the 12500 and offers high performance and density. Network Test validated the performance, scale, and reliability of the new HP FlexFabric 12900 and 11900 switch series. These switches together with the FlexFabric 12500 help enterprises to drive down data center operations costs while enabling new service levels and delivering the resiliency and low latency required for virtualization, cloud services, and high-performance computing. HP FlexFabric 12500 switch series key features  Up to 13 Tb/s switch capacity  Up to 864 10 GbE ports  Up to 288 40 GbE ports  Up to 72 100 GbE ports**  Up to 10.8 billion packets per second throughput  A future-proof design able to accommodate 100 GbE  DCB and FCoE support (see next section)  MDC, EVI, MACSec, IRF, and SPB** support (see next section)  High-availability, non-blocking design for zero service interruption; control plane features 1+1 redundancy  Modern, energy-efficient architecture that dramatically reduces space, power, and cooling requirements HP FlexFabric 12900 switch series key features  Up to 36 Tb/s switch capacity  Up to 768 10 GbE ports  Up to 256 40 GbE ports  Up to 64 100 GbE ports*  Up to 19.2 billion packets per second throughput  A future-proof design able to accommodate 100 GbE  DCB and FCoE support (see next section)  MDC*, EVI*, IRF, SPB*, and TRILL support (see next section)  High-availability, non-blocking design for zero service interruption; control plane features 1+1 redundancy  Modern, energy-efficient architecture that dramatically reduces space, power, and cooling requirements HP FlexFabric 11900 switch series key features  7.7 Tb/s switch capacity  384 10 GbE ports  64 40 GbE ports  5.7 billion packets per second throughput  DCB and FCoE support (see next section)  MDC*, IRF, SPB*, and TRILL support (see next section)  High-availability, non-blocking design for zero service interruption; control plane features 1+1 redundancy  Modern, energy-efficient architecture that dramatically reduces space, power, and cooling requirements * Available by Q1 2014, ** Available by Q4 2013 5
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric WAN routers The HP HSR6800 Router Series is a portfolio of high-performance WAN services routers that are ideal for large-scale data center WANs. HP HSR6800 router series key features  Multicore distributed processing architecture that scales up to 420 Mpps forwarding and up to 2 Tbps switch capacity  Robust routing (MPLS, IPv4, IPv6, dynamic routing, and hierarchical QoS)  Comprehensive security (stateful firewall, IPsec/Dynamic VPN, L2TP/GRE tunnel, DoS protection, traffic analysis and NAT)  Full Layer 2 switching  IRF, NSF/GR, and VRRP for high availability (see next section)  High-density 10GbE (and 40/100 GbE-ready) WAN interface options  Hot-swappable redundant modules and power supplies Breakthrough scalability, reliability, and economics FlexFabric core data center networking platforms support a number of standards-based switching and routing protocols along with other advanced features and capabilities specifically designed to meet the stringent scalability, resiliency, and price-performance demands of next generation core data center networks, including: HP Intelligent Resilient Framework HP Intelligent Resilient Framework (IRF) is an innovative virtualization technology that enables flat, high-performance, highly resilient, ease-to-manage data center networks. With IRF, multiple switches or routers can be virtualized and logically combined to enable ultra-resilient virtual fabrics comprising thousands of switch or router ports— all managed via a single IP address. IRF overcomes the limitations of legacy STP, VRRP, and HSRP technologies providing rapid failover for delay-sensitive, mission-critical applications and dramatically improving network utilization and performance in the network core. In addition, IRF can completely eliminate the need for a dedicated data center network aggregation layer, enabling a collapsed two-tier network architecture. IRF reduces cost and complexity and ensures high throughput, low-latency connectivity for bandwidth intensive, delay-sensitive east-west traffic flows. (See Figure 5) Figure 5. IRF overcomes STP limitations dramatically improving network utilization and performance in the network core IRF Core Blocked links X X X Fully-utilized Links X Access IRF IRF Servers Legacy network • Complex management (many managed elements) • Stranded bandwidth (blocked links) • Slow re-convergence HP IRF network • Simplified management (fewer elements) • No stranded bandwidth • Rapid re-convergence IRF also reduces cost and complexity and provides significantly faster failover than VRRP for delay-sensitive north-south traffic flows in and out of the data center. (See Figure 6 and HP HSR6808 test results summary) 6
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Figure 6. IRF offers faster failover and makes more efficient use of network resources compared to VRRP Unused Link Fully-utilized Links IRF Master Backup VRRP • Slow failover • Stranded bandwidth • Complex management (many managed elements) IRF • Rapid failover • No stranded bandwidth • Simplified management (fewer elements) Shortest Path Bridging and Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links IEEE 802.1aq Shortest Path Bridging (SPB) and IETF Transparent Interconnection of Lots of Links (TRILL) provide standards-based methods for building highly scalable and resilient Layer 2 networks. Similar to IRF, SPB and TRILL overcome STP limitations, providing multi-path forwarding and localized failure resolution to enable full network utilization, fast network re-convergence and dramatically improved Layer 2 scaling. SPB and TRILL reduce administrative cost and complexity and enable reliable, high-throughput transport for workload mobility and other east-west traffic flows. Both protocols use proven routing techniques including shortest paths and multipathing to create a large cloud of links that appear as a single Layer 2 domain. SPB and TRILL enable large Layer 2 clouds with flat address spaces, low-touch configuration, and efficient support for VLANs as well as multicast and broadcast traffic. HP IRF is fully interoperable with SPB and TRILL enabling flexible heterogeneous network deployment options and graceful network migrations. Data Center Bridging and Fibre Channel over Ethernet The Data Center Bridging (DCB) and Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) standards are intended to help IT organizations reduce data center infrastructure cost and complexity by converging data and storage traffic onto the same network fabric. DCB and FCoE can help you contain CAPEX and OPEX by consolidating equipment and cabling, and simplifying administrative functions. In addition FCoE protects FC SAN investments, by enabling your IT teams to preserve familiar tools and techniques for managing IP and FC networks. DCB provides a number of flow control and congestion control mechanisms that make Ethernet a more suitable transport mechanism for storage traffic. FCoE provides a way of encapsulating storage traffic (Fibre Channel frames) into Ethernet frames for transport over lossless DCB Ethernet links. Ethernet Virtual Interconnect HP Ethernet Virtual Interconnect (EVI) extends Layer 2 domains across geographically separated data centers for workload and data mobility, business continuity, and disaster recovery. Unlike legacy Data Center Interconnect (DCI) solutions, HP EVI can be deployed over any network (e.g. IP MPLS, DWDM) regardless of the underlying transport mechanism. The solution works in conjunction with IRF to support multipathing and load balancing between data centers for ultimate performance and reliability. Figure 7. EVI enables workload and data mobility, business continuity, and disaster recovery 7
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Multitenant Device Context HP Multitenant Device Context (MDC) works in conjunction with HP EVI and IRF to enable multi-tenancy across data centers. With MDC, a physical switch can be partitioned into a collection of logical, isolated switches, with distinct control planes, data planes, and forwarding capabilities. Each tenant is assigned its own VLANs, IRF configurations, and EVI networks. MDC helps you contain CAPEX and OPEX by consolidating hardware, streamlining administration, and reducing power, cooling, and space costs. Figure 8. EVI and MDC enable multi-tenancy across data centers Non-stop forwarding/graceful restart Non-stop forwarding/graceful restart (NSF/GR) provides graceful restart for routing protocols (OSPF, BGP, IS-IS, LDP, RSVP and MPLS), with nonstop forwarding (switching/routing) for hitless failover. High-availability architecture and in-service software upgrades HP core switching and routing platforms deliver carrier-class reliability, supporting in-service software upgrades (ISSU) along with redundant, hot-swappable modules, fans, and power supplies to enable extremely high service availability. Independently confirmed performance and reliability HP commissioned Network Test, a respected independent test and engineering services consultancy, to validate the performance and reliability of HP core switching and routing platforms. Network Test executed a variety of stress tests to evaluate the behavior of an HP FlexFabric 12910 core switch and an HP HSR6808 router under various load and failure conditions. The autonomously conducted tests verified these products meet the stringent scalability, resiliency, and performance demands of the next-generation data center core:  A fully loaded HP FlexFabric 12910 and 11908-V switches delivered consistently high throughput, low-latency, lossless Layer 2 and Layer 3 connectivity even under the most stressful load conditions. Furthermore the switch delivered uninterrupted service during component failures and in-service software upgrades.  A fully loaded HP HSR6808 router delivered high scalability (4 Million IP routing table entries, 2.3 Million IPv4/v6/VRF forwarding table entries, 32 million firewall/NAT sessions, 64K L2tp subscribers, 10K IPsec tunnels etc.) with consistently high throughput and low-latency, and sub-millisecond failover recovery (for IRF). 8
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric HP FlexFabric 12910 Network Test validated the performance and reliability of the HP FlexFabric 12910 core switch in tests designed to evaluate the product’s ability to support cloud services (private, public, and hybrid), highly virtualized environments, and high-performance computing applications. More specifically the tests validated the switch’s ability to sustain high throughput, low-latency, lossless traffic forwarding under various load conditions. The tests demonstrate the switch’s capability to handle the bandwidth intensive, delay-sensitive traffic flows that dominate the contemporary data center— workload and data mobility, MapReduce processing, unified communications, and other mission-critical traffic. The exercise is one of the largest independently conducted 40 GbE switch tests ever performed. Key findings  High throughput for unicast traffic: The FlexFabric 12910 delivered line-rate throughput exceeding 5 Tbps with a 128-port 40 GbE configuration and a 480-port 10 GbE configuration, each supporting 128,000 MAC addresses (e.g. 128,000 VMs).A variety of Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) throughput tests were performed, using various frame sizes, with multiple protocols and features enabled. In every case the FlexFabric 12910 forwarded unicast traffic at theoretical maximum rates, with zero dropped frames, demonstrating the FlexFabric 12910 can stand up to the most demanding network loads. NOTE: A fully loaded FlexFabric 12910 supports up to 160 40-GbE ports. Network Test evaluated a 128 40-GbE port configuration due to availability of test equipment.  Low latency for unicast traffic: Network Test measured switch latency under various conditions to determine the ability of the FlexFabric 12910 to carry delay-sensitive, real-time unicast traffic such as unified communications sessions (interactive VoIP and IP video), financial transaction data and other mission-critical traffic. The FlexFabric 12910 consistently introduced low latency across various Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) tests, under various loads, in both 40 GbE and 10 GbE tests.  High throughput for multicast traffic: The FlexFabric 12910 also delivered line-rate throughput for IP multicast traffic, simultaneously handling Layer 2 multicast switching (IGMP snooping) and Layer 3 multicast routing (PIM-SM) functions in a 128-port 40 GbE configuration and a fully loaded 480-port 10 GbE configuration, in various tests, using various frame sizes, with multiple protocols and features enabled. The tests were designed to demonstrate the switch’s ability to simultaneously route multicast traffic from many sources—a common requirement in multicast-enabled applications like videoconferencing. In every case the FlexFabric 12910 forwarded multicast traffic at theoretical maximum rates, with zero dropped frames, demonstrating the switch is well suited for enabling multicast traffic for video conferencing, streaming media, and other one-to-many applications.  Low latency for multicast traffic: Network Test measured switch latency under various conditions to demonstrate the ability of the FlexFabric 12910 to carry delay-sensitive, real-time multicast traffic. The FlexFabric 12910 consistently introduced low latency across various Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) tests, under various loads, in both 40 GbE and 10 GbE tests.  High performance under diverse loads: Network Test measured switch throughput and latency under various conditions—with routing and switching enabled, with access control lists (ACLs) and sFlow®1 monitoring in place, with complex combinations of switched and routed traffic, unicast and multicast traffic, and IPv4 and IPv6 routing—all while subjecting the switch’s control plane to its maximum limits. In every case, even at 40G Ethernet rates, the HP FlexFabric 12910 forwarded all traffic with zero loss.  TRILL conformance: Network Test constructed a multi-node TRILL network comprised of a FlexFabric 12910 and other HP switching equipment to demonstrate the switch’s ability to properly forward traffic across a TRILL-enabled network. The FlexFabric 12910 handled unicast and multicast traffic in accordance with the IEEE TRILL RFCs, with zero frame loss. With TRILL your IT organization can build more efficient, scalable, and cost-effective data center networks, with large Layer 2 domains, which avoid stranded bandwidth and offer simplified administration.  FCoE conformance: Network Test also constructed a multi-node FCoE test bed and verified the ability of the FlexFabric 12910 to provide lossless Ethernet connectivity and to properly handle FCoE traffic. With FCoE your IT organization can significantly reduce CAPEX and OPEX and reduce sprawl, by converging data traffic and storage traffic onto a common Ethernet infrastructure and consolidating equipment and administrative functions.  High system availability: Network Test performed various tests to demonstrate the switch’s ability to deliver continuously uninterrupted service in the event of component failures or swap-outs, and during software upgrades and downgrades—a fundamental requirement for any service organization. Network Test removed critical redundant system components (fan tray, power supply, switch fabric, and main processing unit), initiated graceful protocol restarts, and performed in-service upgrades and downgrades, all under load conditions. In every case the HP FlexFabric 12910 continued to forward all traffic with zero frame loss. 1 sFlow is an industry-standard network monitoring protocol that provides probe-like functionality. 9
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric HP FlexFabric 11908-V Network Test validated the performance and reliability of the HP FlexFabric 11908-V aggregation switch. More specifically the tests validated the switch’s ability to sustain high throughput, low-latency, lossless traffic forwarding under various load conditions. The tests demonstrate the switch’s capability to handle the bandwidth intensive, delay-sensitive traffic flows that dominate the contemporary data center—workload and data mobility, MapReduce processing, unified communications, and other mission-critical traffic. Key findings  High throughput for unicast traffic: The FlexFabric 11908-V delivered line-rate throughput exceeding 2.5 Tbps with 64-port 40 GbE configuration and a 384-port 10 GbE configuration, each supporting 128,000 MAC addresses (e.g. 128,000 VMs). A variety of Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) throughput tests were performed, using various frame sizes, with multiple protocols and features enabled. In every case the FlexFabric 11908-V forwarded unicast traffic at theoretical maximum rates, with zero dropped frames, demonstrating the FlexFabric 11908-V can stand up to the most demanding network loads.  Low latency for unicast traffic: Network Test measured switch latency under various conditions to determine the ability of the FlexFabric 11908-V to carry delay-sensitive, real-time unicast traffic such as unified communications sessions (interactive VoIP and IP video), financial transaction data and other mission-critical traffic. The FlexFabric 11908-V consistently introduced low latency across various Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) tests, under various loads, in both 40 GbE and 10 GbE tests.  High throughput for multicast traffic: The FlexFabric 11908-V also delivered line-rate throughput for IP multicast traffic, simultaneously handling Layer 2 multicast switching (IGMP snooping) and Layer 3 multicast routing (PIM-SM) functions in a fully loaded 384-port 10 GbE configuration and a 64-port 40 GbE configuration, in various tests, using various frame sizes, with multiple protocols and features enabled. The tests were designed to demonstrate the switch’s ability to simultaneously route multicast traffic from many sources—a common requirement in multicast-enabled applications like videoconferencing. In every case the FlexFabric 11908-V forwarded multicast traffic at theoretical maximum rates, with zero dropped frames, demonstrating the switch is well suited for enabling multicast traffic for video conferencing, streaming media, and other one-to-many applications.  Low latency for multicast traffic: Network Test measured switch latency under various conditions to demonstrate the ability of the FlexFabric 11908-V to carry delay-sensitive, real-time multicast traffic. The FlexFabric 11908-V consistently introduced low latency across various Layer 2 switching and Layer 3 routing (IPv4 and IPv6) tests, under various loads, in both 10 GbE and 40 GbE tests.  High performance under diverse loads: Network Test measured switch throughput and latency under various conditions—with routing and switching enabled, with access control lists (ACLs) and sFlow®2 monitoring in place, with complex combinations of switched and routed traffic, unicast and multicast traffic, and IPv4 and IPv6 routing—all while subjecting the switch’s control plane to its maximum limits. In every case, even at 40G Ethernet rates, the HP FlexFabric 11908-V forwarded all traffic with zero loss.  TRILL conformance: Network Test constructed a multi-node TRILL network comprised of a FlexFabric 11908-V and other HP switching equipment to demonstrate the switch’s ability to properly forward traffic across a TRILL-enabled network. The FlexFabric 11908-V handled unicast and multicast traffic in accordance with the IEEE TRILL RFCs, with zero frame loss. With TRILL your IT organization can build more efficient, scalable, and cost-effective data center networks, with large Layer 2 domains, which avoid stranded bandwidth and offer simplified administration.  FCoE conformance: Network Test also constructed a multi-node FCoE test bed and verified the ability of the FlexFabric 11908-V to provide lossless Ethernet connectivity and to properly handle FCoE traffic. With FCoE your IT organization can significantly reduce CAPEX and OPEX and reduce sprawl, by converging data traffic and storage traffic onto a common Ethernet infrastructure and consolidating equipment and administrative functions.  High system availability: Network Test performed various tests to demonstrate the switch’s ability to deliver continuously uninterrupted service in the event of component failures or swap-outs, and during software upgrades and downgrades—a fundamental requirement for any service organization. Network Test removed critical redundant system components (fan tray, power supply, switch fabric, and main processing unit), initiated graceful protocol restarts, and performed in-service upgrades and downgrades, all under load conditions. In every case the HP FlexFabric 11908-V continued to forward all traffic with zero frame loss. 2 10 sFlow is an industry-standard network monitoring protocol that provides probe-like functionality.
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric HP HSR6808 Network Test validated the performance and resiliency of the HP HSR6808 core router in tests designed to evaluate the product’s ability to support public and private cloud service environments. More specifically the tests validated the router’s ability to maintain massively-large IPv4 and IPv6 routing and forwarding tables, to support massive secure VPN connections with rapid connection set-up, to maintain large scale IPsec tunnels with impressive crypto throughput—and to provide sub-millisecond recovery in various failover scenarios. Key findings  Massive routing scalability: Network Test performed a variety of load tests to evaluate the router’s control plane scalability. In every case the HSR6808 forwarded traffic at line rate without packet loss. Network Test conducted a RFC2544 full mesh throughput test and populated the HSR6808’s routing information base (RIB) with 4 million BGP routes,3 and then sent traffic to 450,000 routes, forcing the router to populate its forwarding information base (FIB). The HSR6808 performed flawlessly, forwarding traffic at line speed on 28-port 10GbE ports, with zero packet loss. To test the scalability even further, Network Test performed combined services testing adding: − 990,000 BGP4 routes in the FIB (IPv4) − 10,000 OSPFv2 routes in the FIB (IPv4) − 990,000 BGP4+ routes in the FIB (IPv6) − 10,000 OSPFv3 routes in the FIB (IPv6) − 16 VRF instances with a total of 300,000 FIB entries  10,000 ACLs and QoS policy enabled on all portsEven under extremely heavy load, the HSR6808 forwarded traffic without packet loss on 16-port 10 GbE.  Highly scalable security services: Network Test also evaluated the router’s capacity to establish and maintain stateful firewall, NAT, and secure tunnels connections. The tests confirmed the HSR6808’s ability to support high volumes of concurrent sessions and VPN tunnels. In particular, Network Test verified the router’s capability to support: − 32,000,000 concurrent TCP firewall connections (1.235 million connections/second establishment rate) − 32,000,000 concurrent TCP NAT connections (1.236 million connections/second establishment rate) − 27.7G/line card, for the combined NAT/Firewall/ACL services − 64,000 concurrent PPPoE sessions − 64,000 concurrent L2TP sessions − 20,000 concurrent GRE sessions − 10,000 concurrent IPsec tunnels − 105.6 Gbps IPsec AES VPN encryption The tests confirm the HSR6808 meets the stringent demands of large scale private and public cloud environments.  Sub-millisecond failover: Network Test constructed a multi-node network to evaluate network resiliency using both IRF and Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (VRRP).4 Network Test failed individual nodes and individual links, measuring recovery times for both IRF and VRRF. IRF recovered from failures more than 4900 times faster than VRRP—mitigating link and node failures at sub-millisecond speeds.5 Rapid failure recovery is critically important for ensuring the reliable delivery of delay-sensitive traffic such as interactive voice and video sessions, or financial services application data. 3 To put this number into perspective, the global Internet contains approximately 450,000 networks VRRP is an industry-standard router resiliency protocol. 5 IRF recovered from link and node failures in 657 microseconds and 577 microseconds, respectively. VRRP recovered from link and node failures in 2.7 seconds and 2.8 seconds, respectively. 4 11
  • Technical white paper | Powering the 21st century data center with HP next generation FlexFabric Conclusion Advances in information technology—virtualization, cloud computing, and big data—are transforming the data center and introducing complex network engineering and capacity planning challenges for IT organizations. Conventional data center networks built for a fading era of client-server computing can’t meet the stringent performance, scalability, or availability demands of today’s virtualized on-demand service environments. With HP FlexFabric you can build a flatter, more resilient, efficient, cost-effective and secure network infrastructure that readily accommodates the bandwidth intensive, delay-sensitive traffic flows that permeate today’s virtualized compute, storage, and cloud environments. HP intelligent access switches, high-capacity core switches and routers, and end-to-end management solutions deliver new levels of design and operational simplification, and industry-leading density, scale, and performance for your next-generation data center network. Independently conducted tests confirm the HP FlexFabric 12910 core switch and the HSR6808 router consistently deliver high throughput, low-latency, lossless Layer 2 and Layer 3 connectivity even under stressful load conditions. HP FlexFabric— breakthrough performance and economics for today’s on-demand data center. Learn more at hp.com/go/flexfabric Sign up for updates hp.com/go/getupdated Share with colleagues Rate this document © Copyright 2013 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. The only warranties for HP products and services are set forth in the express warranty statements accompanying such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors or omissions contained herein. 4AA4-6632ENW, May 2013