Storage Area Network Design Overview Using Brocade DCX 8510 Backbone Switches

Contributed by Paola Stone Martinez.

The design of a Storage Area Networks is a very complex process. There are different factors that have to be considered before setting it up. The engineers have to consider what the expectations from the users are and which topology could be more adequate for the company. Performance and availability are some characteristics mainly expected from users. Based on the company history, it is necessary to decide if a Core-Edge or Mesh topology would work better for the environment.

Information about Storage Area Network is presented in the first part of this paper; why it is used and its benefits are explained. Concepts of fabric, zoning, and different port types are introduced as well. Then, a brief description of the Brocade DCX 8510 switch is presented including key features and management tools. This is followed by an explanation of how switches are interconnected to form a fabric, and the different available topologies. Finally, the study of a fabric using Brocade DCX 8510 switches is presented.

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