Built to Run. Perform. Scale.

Ray Clearwater, Consulting Principal, Presidio
05/14/13 at 06:46 am

I recently had a chance to get my hands on Cisco’s new MDS 9710 fabric director at EMC World 2013 and I can describe it in two words, common sense.   

Common sense is defined by Merriam-Webster as “sound and prudent judgment based on a simple perception of the situation or facts”.  

As part of the Cisco’s Storage Networking line and neatly following in the MDS 9513’s path, the MDS 9710 provides  reliability, performance and scale, and represents the new standard in data center storage networking.

Built to run. The front to back cooling struck me first.  The SAN is finally near the storage.  When the blade removal handle is pulled, sensors trigger and migrate the running resource to an available module.  Non-disruptive operation makes every IT Director with a co-located data center happy.   Power modules and components use an N+N grid configuration.  Supervisors are active/active at 1+1. Even major sub components like fan controllers, regulators and assemblies are N+1.  Redundancy is built in everywhere.    

Built to perform.  Trading floors and service providers are drooling at the 24Tb/s in total throughput.  The MDS 9710 nearly triples the 9513, with 384 ports at 2/4/8-Gbps, 4/8/16-Gbps or 10-Gbps full line-rate, all in a single chassis.  No data likes to wait. 

Built to scale.  For IT departments struggling with virtual machine stall, the MDS 9710 offers VM storage transparency and SAN consolidation capabilities.  Storage is now presented to a virtual machine with the same SAN attributes as a physical server.  Multi-hop FCoE and FC to FCOE cascading federates and simplifies SANs.  All this may be the ticket to grabbing the remaining 20% of the physical environments still making heat in the data center.  The DBA’s will never know the difference.

In short, the MDS 9710 fabric director from Cisco is built to serve the most demanding storage environments now and far into the future.