EMC Ships First 4-Gig Fibre Channel Product

EMC on Monday announced general availability of its first 4 gigabit-per-second Fibre Channel offering, the Connectrix DS-4100B SAN switch solution based on Brocade’s SilkWorm 4100 SAN switches.

EMC OEMs switches from the major storage switch vendors — McData, Brocade and Cisco — for its Connectrix offerings, and Brocade was the first to qualify. McData and Cisco are expected to follow soon.

4 Gbps Fibre Channel is backwards-compatible with current 2 Gbps offerings and comparably priced, so users can upgrade to the higher speed without overhauling their infrastructure. However, it remains to be seen how strong initial demand will be for the higher speeds.

EMC says the new offering can act as the core switch in a growing fabric in mid-range organizations, and for large enterprise applications, it can feed data from the edge to a larger SAN director.

With ports-on-demand scalability, the Connectrix DS-4100B’s base 16-port configuration can be non-disruptively scaled with 8-port upgrade licenses to 24 and 32 ports.

“This new 4 gigabit per second SAN switching technology from Brocade helps EMC expand the breadth of its information lifecycle management solutions,” stated Tom Joyce, EMC’s senior director of storage platforms marketing. “The EMC Connectrix DS-4100B brings next-generation data rates and pay-as-you-grow scalability to today’s storage networks.”

Brocade’s SilkWorm 4100 products offer enterprise-class features such as redundant and hot-swappable power supplies and fans; hot-swappable SFP media; hot code loading and activation; enterprise-level security; fabric management; and ease-of-use features. Each port is auto-sensing for data link speeds of 1, 2, or 4 Gbit/sec, for full forward and backward compatibility.

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Paul Shread
eSecurity Editor Paul Shread has covered nearly every aspect of enterprise technology in his 20+ years in IT journalism, including an award-winning series on software-defined data centers. He wrote a column on small business technology for Time.com, and covered financial markets for 10 years, from the dot-com boom and bust to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He holds a market analyst certification.

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