First Cross-Country Optical Business Continuity Network Demonstrated

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Lucent Technologies and Storage Computer today announced completion of the world’s first live optically connected storage network using Fibre Channel Over IP (FCIP) technology for real time data mirroring and replication through an OC-48 network, traversing distances exceeding 2,100 miles (3,400 km).

The joint demonstration showcased the ability to support superior performance data replication over long distances, enabling businesses to seamlessly maintain continuous operations in the event of a site-wide disaster.

The demonstration combined the optical connectivity and FCIP technology provided by the Lucent OptiStar EdgeSwitch, along with Storage Computer’s storage architecture within the CyberBorgVSA (Virtual Storage Architecture), to perform synchronous data mirroring and replication between data centers in New York City and Denver, Colo., over an optical network backbone.

“With the OptiStar EdgeSwitch, service providers and enterprises can now deliver business continuity and storage networking applications from across the metropolitan areas to across the world,” said Joseph Mele, vice president and general manager of the Lucent Optical Edge and Network Management business unit. “In Lucent labs we have successfully run storage applications at simulated distances out to 35,000 kilometers, and we are pleased to validate these results in a live carrier network environment.”

This was the first live demonstration of FCIP storage transport directly over a long distance OC-48c Packet over SONET connection, and the first cross-country demonstration of Storage Computer’s LogSynchronous data mirroring. The combination of the OptiStar EdgeSwitch and the CyberBorg VSA allows remotely mirrored data to be accessed at the same speeds as local data, thus removing geographical boundaries.

In the demonstration, Storage Computer CyberBorgVSA storage systems and data servers were connected via Fibre Channel through the Lucent OptiStar EdgeSwitch directly into an OC-48c Packet over SONET (PoS) link. Using its FCIP technology and unique flow control implementation, the OptiStar EdgeSwitch overcame the interworking and distance constraints of the Fibre Channel protocol to enable reliable storage transport over the long-haul network.

The Storage Computer CyberBorgVSA provided the advanced input/output (I/O) characteristics and replication functionality required to fully utilize the capabilities of the OptiStar EdgeSwitch. Driving over 2.0 Gigabits/sec in one direction through the network, the demonstration provided a true industry first Storage Wide Area Network (SWAN) running at optical network rates.

The cross-country optical storage demonstration showed the small amount of equipment needed to achieve high performance storage networking over OC-48c PoS. At each data center, the OptiStar EdgeSwitch provided the complete functionality of a Fibre Channel fabric switch, a FCIP storage gateway/router, an IP edge router and an optical PoS platform, all in one small-profile chassis. The CyberBorgVSA advanced architecture combines sophisticated storage management software and industry available hardware with the capabilities to virtualize and aggregate storage resources, providing unmatched performance levels (both in I/O’s processed and Megabyte data throughput) in a compressed space. The Lucent and Storage Computer equipment at each site entailed servers, the OptiStar EdgeSwitch, and the CyberBorgVSA with nearly a Terabyte of data storage capacity, and the combined footprint measured only 9 rack units (15.75 inches or 40 cm) tall, mounted in a 19-inch (48.3 cm) rack.

“We have shown the strength and power of advanced architectures that can move storage data at near OC-48 line rates,” said Todd Viegut, vice president of marketing for Storage Computer. “The VSA’s data replication capabilities bring a new generation of business continuity and continuous online operations to enterprise data center applications. Integrating the VSA into the optical carrier network can provide significantly faster response rates and higher service levels for the customer, helping to ensure operations through a disaster, rather than to merely recover from one.”

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