Mellanox extends InfiniBand across the campus

Mellanox's new MetroX switch can be used to connect different InfiniBand networks

Mellanox Technologies has introduced a new set of switches, the MetroX TX6000 series, that can stretch an InfiniBand connection across different buildings.

The switch will allow an organization to tie together two or more different InfiniBand networks that exist in different buildings on the same campus, up to 10 kilometers, or 6.2 miles, away.

InfiniBand is typically used as a high-speed interconnect to join groups of servers, or servers to storage networks within a single data center. This new technology, however, will allow organizations to connect separate InfiniBand networks across short distances.

The MetroX TX6100, available in early 2013, will have a throughput of up to 10 Gbs, and the MetroX TX6200, available in the second half of next year, will run at 40 Gbs. Eventually, the company will introduce new products that can convey InfiniBand traffic up to distances of 100 kilometers, or 62 miles.

Mellanox announced the switches at the SC12 supercomputing conference, being held this week in Salt Lake City.

Typically, to join different data center networks nearby to one another, an organization may use a Synchronous Optical Networking (SONET) optic network. The advantage of using MetroX to connect data centers is that it extends InfiniBand's use of remote direct memory access (RDMA). Other companies sell equipment for running InfiniBand across a WAN (wide area network), though without the RDMA capability.

"We are keeping RDMA all the through the entire line," said Brian Sparks, Mellanox senior director of marketing communications.

RDMA is advantageous in that it allows an end-device to send and receive data without requiring work from the system processor. With RDMA, the network card itself manages the data transfer directly from system memory, freeing up the system processor for other essential duties.

MetroX is based on Mellanox's SwitchX integrated circuit design. The devices will have six ports internal and six external ports. "There is no gateway functionality here. This is just extending InfiniBand," said Todd Wilde, Mellanox director of technical computing, during a SC12 presentation about new Mellanox technologies.

Use of InfiniBand appears to be growing, at least in the high performance computing (HPC) market. In the most recent Top 500 compilation of the world's fastest supercomputers, InfiniBand was used in 226 systems of the top 500 systems, up from 209 systems six months ago.

Mellanox did not disclose how much the switches would cost.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags networking hardwareMellanoxNetworkingswitches

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Joab Jackson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?