Fibre Channel (SAN)

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Occasional Contributor
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎09-06-2010

Fabric Merging?

Hi,

we are in front of a decision on how to develop our SAN further on. Actually we have several seperated SAN Fabric islands with exclusive storage systems. The main goal shall be to make the storage systems of the distributed SAN Fabrics all over available.

In my opinion a big Fabric merge with core switches could achieve that goal. But I'm not sure if this will work unless we are working with HP (3200, 3800) and IBM (5300, 4100, 300E, 200E) labled Brocades and Cisco MDS9124. Further I'm not sure we can use one single active cfg. Is there an alternative to build a big fabric, but to connect the distributed Fabrics?

Thanks for your suggestions.

dedalus

Super Contributor
Posts: 260
Registered: ‎04-09-2008

Re: Fabric Merging?

You could create LSAN's with Brocade extension switches. These will limit configuration changes in one fabric to itself, but allow specific traffic to flow across multiple fabrics.

So you could connect each of your distributed islands together with such a solution.

http://www.hds.com/assets/pdf/brocade-7800-extension-switch-datasheet.pdf?WT.ac=us_inside_sp2r1

Occasional Contributor
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎09-06-2010

Re: Fabric Merging?

Hi bijukrishnan,

Thank you for your reply. I think this reduces really the effort of bringing together 3 or more Fabrics. I have two questions to your suggestions:

Connectivity

Do you know if there are limitations in cross connectivity, since we are using HP and IBM labeled Brocades? Are there no limitations/connection problems for Storage connectivity in combining Logical SANs where one Fabric uses e.g. NetApp Storage and another Fabric using e.g. Hitachi Storage and another e.g. using HP Storage? Any experiences?

Fabrics

Do I understand that right, that I don't have to change any Switch Fabric configuration but add a zone on the Brocade 7800, where I connected both Core Fabric Switches? And after bringing the new Router Config up the two Fabrics can access nodes, storages from each other? How does this work? Does the router know about the config and the aliases of the other Fabrics for generating the Router zone with the distributed Fabric aliases/zones?

Thanks in advance,

dedalus

Super Contributor
Posts: 260
Registered: ‎04-09-2008

Re: Fabric Merging?

You can do this with any vendor Brocade switches and share any type of tape or storage.  There is a book from Josh Judd titled "Multiprotocol Routing for SAN's" - published by Brocade and sold for USD 40.

all you have to do is create LSAN's with similar members in both or all fabrics.

You could read this in an old blog of mine. http://sanunix.blogspot.com/2008/08/brocade-lsan-concepts-lsan-is-sharing.html

Am not sure if you could connect the Cisco SAN and share stuff from there because LSAN is proprietary brocade and not a FC standard.

Occasional Contributor
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎09-06-2010

Re: Fabric Merging?

Hi bijukrishnan,

Thanks for the reply and your useful tipps & links.

Best Regards

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