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Fast Guide to Fibre Channel basics

This Fast Guide to Fibre Channel basics has everything you need to get up-to-speed on the speediest (not to mention one of the most expensive) of the storage interconnects.


  Maryann Tripp, Assistant Editor Are you a Fibre Channel newbie, or just trying to get a solid grasp of the basics? This Fast Guide to Fibre Channel basics has everything you need to get up-to-speed on the speediest (not to mention one of the most expensive) of the storage interconnects. Also included in this guide: The pros and cons of FC, new developments in low-cost FC and comparisions with other storage protocols.

    Whatis Fibre Channel?
    Evaluating network protocols
    Pros/cons of Fibre Channel
    The new wave: Low-cost Fibre Channel
    Latest Fibre Channel news/developments
    Library of SAN/NAS tips


  Whatis Fibre Channel  Return to Table of Contents
  • Glossary Definition:  Fibre Channel

  • Whatis FCIP?

  • Whatis the FCIA?

  • SAN School Lesson 3: What makes a SAN go?
    Understanding the performance aspects of a SAN can help you begin to see where the benefits lie. This lesson is devoted to the inner workings of a SAN, such as latency issues, Fibre Channel protocols, WWN and how the SAN fabric works.


  Evaluating network protocols  Return to Table of Contents
  • How to decide between Fibre and SCSI SANs

  • Test, test, test. That's the advice from expert Chris Poelker whenever evaluating any product you plan on bringing into your data center. In this tip, Chris lists 10 things you must consider before you make your choice.
  • Featured Topic:  Evaluate network protocols

  • To help make your research a breeze, has gathered the best news, expert Q&As, tips and quick guides on the various network protocols. This Featured Topic is geared to help you evaluate each protocol.
  • Article:  Choosing your storage networking protocol

  • Article:  The difference between SCSI and FC protocols


  Pros/cons of Fibre Channel  Return to Table of Contents

  • Expert advice:  Choosing the right number of FC ports on a disk subsystem

  • Expert advice:  What's native Fibre Channel and it's benefits?

  • Article:  User dumps Fibre Channel for ATA

  • Expedient swaps out an EMC Symmetrix for a Nexsan ATA array and claims it has seen no performance degradation. It has seen a massive drop in its cost.
  • Tutorial:  SAN School Webcast Series: Chapter 8, Tying SANs Together

  • Join Christopher Poelker, co-author, "Storage Area Networks for Dummies" for a webcast on how to create a full scale network by tying SANs together. This lesson looks at how to extend the SAN, connectivity between SANs and SAN islands, IP storage, virtualization (in-band, out-of-band) and SW/HW pooling.


  The new wave: Low-cost Fibre Channel  Return to Table of Contents
  • Poll:  Fibre Channel for less?

  • What do you think is driving the price of FC down? Find out what your peers say in this poll.
  • Tip:  Can cheap Fibre Channel HBAs stave off iSCSI?

  • If you can hold off your HBA purchases, you'll be well served. Analysts say the price of FC HBAs should be slashed in half in the next 12-18 months. Another factor -- the emergence of iSCSI will put more pressure on the HBA. What is the future of HBAs especially when the big boys of storage deliver native iSCSI storage? Find out here.
  • Article:  Is low-cost Fibre Channel finally here?

  • A lot can happen in a couple of years. Two years ago, storage salespeople's unofficial modus operandi was to ignore storage area network (SAN) buyers that didn't have at least $250,000 to spend. Now, a new Fibre Channel (FC) switch from QLogic, the SANbox 5200, has a street price of under $500/port.


  Latest Fibre Channel news/developments  Return to Table of Contents
  • Article:  IDC: Fibre Channel switch prices dropping

  • IDC Corp. predicts a drop in the cost of Fibre Channel switches and, when coupled with similar savings on HBAs, could mean a true price decline for Fibre Channel SAN gear.
  • Article:  4 Gb/s FC: Why bother?

  • Users can't foresee a reason to move to 4 Gb/s FC networks when they are barely touching the capabilities of their 2 Gig gear.
  • Article:  HP snubs SATA for low-cost Fibre drive

  • HP has opted for Seagate's new FATA drive over the more popular serial ATA drives. What's the deal?
  • Article:  Sub-$10,000 SANs become a reality

  • Storage startup iQstor is offering a serial ATA-based Fibre Channel SAN for a price one expert calls "impossible to argue with."


  Additional resources  Return to Table of Contents


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