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Contributor
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎06-04-2004

Virtual fabric for Ficon

Hi all,

I have 4 Brocade 48000, 4 Gb blade sfp with FOS :


Kernel:     2.6.14.2
Fabric OS:  v6.4.0c
Made on:    Thu Sep 2 22:17:08 2010
Flash:      Sat Mar 19 18:01:45 2011
BootProm:   4.6.6

We have a mainframe, so we can't use DPS (Dynamic Path Selection), option not supported by Ficon. We have load problem on ISL, so I really want to use DPS.

Can somebody tell me if virtual fabric a solution to solve this issue ? The idea would be to define a virtual fabric for the mainframe and to keep DPS on for the rest.

Thanks.

Best regards,

Pierre.

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 76
Registered: ‎02-13-2010

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

>> Can somebody tell me if virtual fabric a solution to solve this issue ?

Virtual Fabrics are not supported on 48000 models.

You have only two options:

1. Use trunking. It will distribute your load among your ISLs at the frame level. Requires a license.

2. Upgrade to a 8gb platform: 5100, 5300 or DCX and firmware 6.4. In this environment you can enable Lossless DLS (used for mainframe environments) with DPS enabled and also you can use virtual fabrics to separate mainframe from open systems.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 931
Registered: ‎12-30-2009

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

You didn't tell how what causes the load on your ISL, so perhaps this info is useless.

But there could be an third option, traffic isolation.

It doesn't require you to buy a license or new hardware and thats

It's supported on 48K's from FOS6.3 so you're good to go an that part.

Thing is you need a dedicated ISL to seperate FICON traffic between switches.

Depending on your environment that could be cheaper than the other 2 options

External Moderator
Posts: 4,862
Registered: ‎02-23-2004

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

Hi Pierre,

Dion suggestion about Approved and Certified FICON FOS Release is correct as well.

NEW Approved and Certified FOS for some 8G Plattforms on FICON is FOS 7.0.0c and this is not supported by 48K.

Finally, depend you Fabric Design, some Feature in FICON Environment and some FOS Release are only Supported with 16 Port Blade.

For you solution, another option is - see for Cascaded FICON- , Technical Brief is attached.

TechHelp24
Contributor
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎06-04-2004

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

Thanks a lot for your answer. Actually, we plan to install new DCX with 48 ,ports blade. Can you please tell me if Ficon and virtual fabric is supported on 48 ports blade ? 

Thanks.

Best regards,

Pierre.

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 76
Registered: ‎02-13-2010

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

Yes it is supported. Using 256-area addressing mode.

Contributor
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎06-04-2004

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

Hello,

Regarding your answer :

2. Upgrade to a 8gb platform: 5100, 5300 or DCX and firmware 6.4. In this environment you can enable Lossless DLS (used for mainframe environments) with DPS enabled and also you can use virtual fabrics to separate mainframe from open systems.

I have still a question : On our 48000, we have mainframe and open systems and we don't use virtual fabrics. On our new DCX where I want to enable DLS and DPS, can you tell me if I have to use virtual fabric to separate mainframe and open systems ? I mean, it it an obligation or is it better to use it ?

Thanks a lot for your help.

Kind regards,

Pierre.

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 76
Registered: ‎02-13-2010

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

It is not an obligation. But it has a great advantage to do it this way, for example you may want to use IOD in one fabric and not in other. Some other specific fabric features that may be desired for mainframe environment can be set without impact for open systems and viceversa.

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 90
Registered: ‎12-26-2010

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

what is exactly mean by  256-area addressing mode?

Valued Contributor
Posts: 761
Registered: ‎06-11-2010

Re: Virtual fabric for Ficon

Hi,

In response to your last question:

SKT escribió:

what is exactly mean by  256-area addressing mode?

FICON is quite strict when it comes to FC addressing and that addressing mode is recommended when ficon is used withing a VF. By default, when VF are configured, the 10-bit addressing mode is used (the switch could use 2 bits from the AL_PA to address a port), in order to support more and more ports in the blades. This mode could be problematic when dealing with FICON environments due to the way Mainframe works, that is why 256-area addressing mode is recommended, because it uses only 16 bits to address a port.

These kind of questions are very well explained in the Brocade Admin guide.

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