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Cisco UCS fabric bandwidth doubles: News in brief

Updates to Cisco's UCS platform mean more; SeaMicro packs in more density; and other data center news.

Cisco updates UCS fabric, management software
New versions of Cisco’s Fabric Interconnect, Fabric Extender I/O module, and Virtual Interface Card to go with its Unified Computing System (UCS) debuted last week at Cisco Live. Cisco also released UCS Manager 2.0.

The UCS 6248UP Fabric Interconnect doubles its total switching capacity to 1Tb/s and supports Cisco’s Unified Port technology, allowing any of its 48 ports to be configured as Ethernet, traditional Fibre Channel or Fibre Channel over Ethernet. The UCS Fabric Extender 2208XP Chassis IO Module also doubles the bandwidth available to a blade chassis to 160Gb/s; and the new Virtual Interface Card 1280 includes dual 40 Gb ports for four times the bandwidth of the previous model, and supports up to 256 virtual network interface cards.

UCS Manager 2.0, meanwhile, can be configured as a VMware vCenter plug-in, and now supports Red Hat KVM virtualization. It can also manage UCS Express–virtual machines that run on Cisco’s Integrated Services Routers in branch offices.

Nimsoft expands UCS monitoring
Nimsoft’s eponymous monitoring tool now supports additional components of the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS). The tool now recognizes UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Servers and UCS 2100 Series Fabric Extenders, in addition to the UCS chassis, server blade systems and fabric interconnects. Nimsoft Monitor now also gathers metrics for interface cards, and monitors and tracks aggregate bandwidth for storage controllers, disks, logical unit numbers (LUNs), and RAID batteries attached to UCS server blades. Finally, configuring Nimsoft Monitor for UCS is simpler thanks to preconfigured thresholds for monitoring component states. These capabilities extend to The VCE Coalition’s Vblock series 300 and 700, both based on UCS.

SeaMicro adds denser server
SeaMicro, known for its low-power servers, is shipping the SM10000-64HD, which features 384 1.66 GHz Intel Atom dual-core processors in 10 rack units. The model increases cores in the same footprint by 50% over its predecessor, but just 26% greater power consumption. That density was achieved by increasing the number of Atom processors per SeaMicro’s proprietary motherboard from four to six. The SM10000-64HD is available immediately, and has a list price of $237,000.

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