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Mainframe Solutions

The Holy Grail of Extension for IBM System z: Introducing the IBM System Storage SAN42B-R

by Dr.Steve.Guendert ‎12-01-2014 02:34 PM - edited ‎12-02-2014 06:50 AM (8,992 Views)

My last blog post discussed the new Brocade 7840 extension switch.  If you have not already read that post, titled The Brocade 7840 Extension Switch: Taking Disaster Recovery to the Next Level, please do so.   I also would encourage you to read Mark Detrick's outstanding blog titled Strengthen DR Through Intelligent Design. I also would like to recommend Scott Shimomura's superb discussion titled The Network Matters for Disaster Recovery.


Today's post will expand upon my last post, specifically for the newly announced IBM System Storage SAN42B-R.  IBM announced the System Storage SAN42B-R on 25 November.   The SAN42B-R is the IBM branded version (IBM OEM) of the Brocade 7840.


IBM System Storage SAN42B-R leverages the core technology of Brocade's Gen 5 Fibre Channel platforms. It combines enterprise-class availability with innovative features nondisruptive firmware upgrades to achieve always-on business operations and maximize application uptime. These capabilities enable a high-performance and highly reliable network infrastructure for disaster recovery and data protection. 


The SAN42B-R maximizes replication and backup throughput over distance using data compression, disk protocol acceleration, and FCIP networking technology. Advanced features and technologies include:


What I believe is the most valuable technology for IBM System z customers:


Customers have indicated that one of the most important new features in new extension platforms is non-disruptive firmware upgrades for extension with Extension HCL. This is the ability to perform Hot Code Load (HCL) with no disruption to FCIP connections.  Brocade listened and delivered.   Brocade builds storage networking products to satisfy the highest standards of IBM System z.  Extension HCL is lossless and guarantees in-order delivery.  There will be no Interface Control Checks (IFCC) with Extension HCL on the SAN42B-R. This is a major technology achievement.


The SAN42B-R also supports te entire range of Brocade Fabric Vision features and functionality available with FOS 7.3.


The Brocade 7840 Extension Switch is a true game changer for business continuity in IBM System z environments and the recent IBM announcement provides IBM and Brocade's mutual customers the opportunity to have the 7840 as an IBM OEM product and take full advantage of the benefits that come with that.  This extension switch is a quantum leap forward over all existing extension products in the market today in terms of performance, advanced features, management, scalability, and availability. It is an ideal platform for IBM System z environments moving to three or more site architectures. Organizations running IBM System z can implement the IBM System Storage SAN 42B-R (AKA Brocade 7840), knowing in full confidence that they will have a superior business continuity replication network platform  for many years to come



 You can read the details of the IBM announcement here.  IBM's GA is 12 December 2014. For additional information, including details on supported host systems, SAN components, and storage systems, visit


(2 December 2014): IBM just published an IBM Redbooks Product Guide on the SAN42B-R.


Dr. Steve