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Posts Tagged ‘IBTA’

IBTA Announces New RoCE Specification

September 16th, 2014

Big news! The IBTA today announced the updated specification for Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) over Converged Ethernet (RoCE), RoCEv2. This is a huge development and one that will expand RoCE’s adoption.

The benefits of the first RoCE spec released in 2010 were many:

· Low latency and CPU overhead (eliminated the multiple data copies inside the server)

· High network utilization

· Support for message passing, sockets and storage protocols

· Supported by all major operating systems

RoCEv2 extends the original RoCE specification by enabling routing across Layer 3 networks and as a result provides better isolation and enables hyperscale data center deployments. This addresses the needs of today’s evolving data centers which require more efficient data movement over a variety of network topologies.

With a number of vendors including Dell and Zadara Storage recently adopting RoCE, this new specification comes at the perfect time. Major cloud providers and Web 2.0 companies are also adopting RoCE in order to combat the challenges of running compute intensive applications and processing massive amounts of data in hyperscale networking environments.

Representatives from IBTA member companies including Emulex, IBM, Mellanox, Microsoft and Software Forge, Inc. participated in the development of this new standard, which will help enterprises to more widely adopt RoCE and improve infrastructure efficiency.

For more information, read the full IBTA announcement.

Bill Lee

Recent Trends toward RoCE Adoption

September 2nd, 2014

The RoCE specification was released back in April, 2010 to address the need for efficient RDMA in end to end Ethernet networks. With the increase in enterprise data traffic and the emergence of hyperscale infrastructure, the need for efficient networking continues to grow.  Here are the latest examples of RoCE in the field.

RoCE Accelerates Microsoft Windows Azure

Albert Greenberg, an architect with IBTA member Microsoft, describes in his keynote address to the Open Network Summit this year how they are using RoCE in their storage offering.  RoCE over 40GbE enabled line-rate performance with zero CPU usage.  At the same time they were able to use less CPUs than would otherwise be needed.

RoCE Used in Dell Fluid Cache for SAN pool

Dell’s Fluid Cache for SAN accelerates applications requiring high data I/O. The servers in this pool are connected to each other by RoCE NICs, making use of the technology to quickly move data between the nodes without facing bottlenecks from the slow operating system kernel.

RoCE Can Do What Ethernet Alone Cannot

IBTA member Applied Micro is continuing to roll out its X-Gene family of 64-bit processors. These processors support RoCE, giving 10GbE some of the low-latency capabilities that used to only be available to InfiniBand. The decrease in latency for Ethernet means transaction latencies also decrease, better positioning the X-Gene family to make a difference in modern workloads.

RoCE Provides Exceptional Performance for Storage Solutions

Zadara Storage announced a new high performance STaaS solution offer for private clouds that uses an Ethernet transport mechanism for exceptional performance at reduced costs. Developed as a collaboration with IBTA member Mellanox Technologies, this solution boosts application performance using the iSCSI Extensions for RDMA (iSER) over RoCE, delivering substantially improved latency and throughput and therefore delivering cost savings and converged enterprise storage for private clouds of all sizes.

RoCE Helps Data Centers Account for New Technology for the Cloud

With the huge acceleration of data centers to the cloud, low latency is becoming increasingly important to avoid bottlenecks and incorporate new technologies seamlessly. RoCE, says SYS-CON Media’s Barbara Porter, is one way to plan for the barrage of new technology that’s coming our way, and to reduce latency overall in the cloud.

Bill Lee

InfiniBand Trade Association Welcomes Luxshare as Member Company

August 26th, 2014

Please join us in giving a warm welcome to the IBTA’s newest member company, Luxshare-ICT.

As an active member, the global interconnect designer and manufacturer will work closely with the IBTA to continue to further the InfiniBand specification as it pertains to the cable and physical layer. In addition to assisting with the development of InfiniBand interconnect technologies for the industry and its customers, Luxshare will also be actively involved in the IBTA Compliance and Interoperability Working Group (CIWG), which oversees the bi-annual Plugfest event.

The IBTA Plugfest, held twice per year at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) Interoperability Lab (IOL) in Durham, New Hampshire, provides an opportunity for participants to measure products for compliance with the InfiniBand™ architecture specification as well as interoperability with other InfiniBand products. Vendor devices and cables successfully passing all required compliance tests and interoperability procedures are listed on the IBTA Integrators’ List and granted the IBTA Integrators’ List Logo.

Luxshare-ICT is a global, publicly traded interconnect provider, experiencing rapid growth in global markets as it expands its products through technical enhancements. For more information about Luxshare and its offerings, please visit www.luxshare-ict.com.

Bill Lee

Broadcom Joins the InfiniBand Trade Association

August 19th, 2014

The IBTA is pleased to announce Broadcom has become an official member company.

Broadcom, which develops end-to-end solutions for data center architectures including Ethernet switch, controller and other devices, joined the IBTA to assist the industry in its adoption of Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) enabled Ethernet networks and to help the association in its ongoing development of the RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) specification.

“Broadcom believes that RDMA is one of several interesting technologies that have promise to simplify and accelerate applications using more intelligence in the network,” said Nick Ilyadis, Vice President & CTO, Infrastructure and Networking Group at Broadcom. “Enabling use of RDMA over Ethernet networks, as RoCE does, provides a more comprehensive and converged solution for Ethernet-based data center fabric topologies.

Broadcom is considering adding RDMA support into a variety of Ethernet products and anticipates that its experience with Ethernet and Internet Protocol (IP) standards development will help in the on-going work of generating and maintaining a well-engineered, interoperable and collaborative specification for use by all IBTA members.

Broadcom’s main interest as part of the IBTA is to contribute to the ongoing development of the RoCE specification as part of the IBoXE Working Group. Broadcom is also a member of the IBTA Technical and Marketing Working Groups.

Broadcom has found a welcoming environment within the IBTA.  “The association is made up of a very collaborative set of companies and technologists,” Nick Ilyadis said.


Broadcom Corporation (NASDAQ: BRCM) is a global FORTUNE 500® company, providing semiconductor solutions for wired and wireless communications. Broadcom® system-on-a-chip solutions deliver voice, video, data and multimedia connectivity in the home, office and mobile environments.  For more information about Broadcom, please visit www.broadcom.com.


Bill Lee

ISC’14 Insights

July 10th, 2014

With ISC’14 in June recently concluded, the IBTA would like to highlight some of our members’ biggest announcements, key takeaways from the event and give an overall look at the impact of InfiniBand in the supercomputing world.

Event Overview

Overall the event was a huge success, showcasing demonstrations and facilitating many major announcements in the supercomputing industry. As always, the event attracted supercomputing leaders from around the world, who provided thought leadership and knowledge to thousands of attendees and exhibitors.

Chris Pfistner, senior director of marketing at Finisar, noted, “ISC in Leipzig is a vibrant show!  Between SC in the US and ISC focused on Europe and Asia, the global Super Computing community is well represented, and the space is on fire with several players unveiling new systems and showing great interest in Finisar’s EDR AOC demo – 100G links are becoming reality.”

The ISC YouTube channel is another great resource for checking out all that happened at ISC’14!

Major InfiniBand Announcements

During the event, the updated TOP500 list was released, showing that InfiniBand is the most used interconnect by the world’s fastest supercomputers and represents 44.4 percent of the TOP500 at 222 systems. InfiniBand also connects the top 17 most efficient systems and 50 percent of Petaflop-capable systems on the list. Fourteen Data Rate (FDR) InfiniBand, delivering 56Gb/s per link to address the bandwidth demand by high performance clustered computing, drives the systems with the highest utilization on the TOP500, achieving a record breaking 99.8 percent system efficiency.

IBTA member Finisar showcased a live demonstration of its next generation 100Gb/s Quadwire Active Optical Cable (AOC). This optical interconnect runs four parallel lanes of 25Gb/s to enable the next generation of InfiniBand EDR-based supercomputers. Leveraging Finisar’s patented fiber optic technology, the AOC will allow the transmission of high-speed data with enhanced signal integrity, higher density, lower power consumption, smaller bend radius and longer reach than traditional copper solutions.

Mellanox Technologies, also an IBTA member, unveiled the world’s first 100Gb/s EDR InfiniBand switch at ISC’14. The 100Gb/s switch expands InfiniBand’s bandwidth and provides increased switching capacity while lowering latency and power consumption. This solution, called Switch-IB, will enable application managers to use the power of data, delivering 5.4 billion packets per second, and making it an excellent solution for HPC, cloud, Web 2.0, database and storage centers.

In other news, Applied Micro teamed up with Nvidia to promote the X-Gene and Tesla duo. The Ethernet ports on the X-Gene 2 chip will be able to run RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE), which brings the low latency of RDMA to the Ethernet protocol. This will make the chip not only suitable for HPC workloads that are latency sensitive, but also for database, storage, and transaction processing workloads in enterprise datacenters that also demand low latency. In tandem, Mellanox announced that their 56Gb/s InfiniBand products will now be optimized for the X-Gene platform.

To sum it all up, here are the IBTA’s key takeaways from the event:

· 100Gb/s is becoming a reality

· InfiniBand is leading the way with EDR taking center stage

· The industry is taking full advantage today of the performance and efficiency benefits of FDR and RoCE

ISC’14 was a great forum for knowledge sharing and big industry announcements. All of us at the IBTA look forward to seeing more InfiniBand news and discussions in the coming months.

bill-lee

Newest IBTA Compliance & Interoperability Testing Includes EDR 100Gb/s InfiniBand Methodology

February 25th, 2014

2014 has already proved to be a busy year for the IBTA. The organization is currently in the midst of compiling results from the recent Plugfest 24, which took place this past October at the University of New Hampshire’s Interoperability Laboratory.

IBTA SC13 Demonstration

IBTA SC13 Demonstration

While exhibiting at SC13 in November, we had the opportunity to showcase the IBTA’s newest EDR 100Gb/s compliance and interoperability testing capabilities that were implemented during October’s biannual Plugfest event. Due to the popularity of the demo at the conference, we wanted to share some details and results here on our blog.

The IBTA’s sophisticated test set-up leveraged Anritsu generators and Tektronix scopes to test EDR active cables.  The Anritsu generators were used to generate a spec compliant 25Gb/s input signal to one lane of an active optical cable along with 25Gb/s signals to the other 7 lanes which were being used as “aggressor” lanes.  Tektronix provided a scope capable of testing the 25Gb/s per lane output of the EDR active cables. The details are provided in the Anritsu Method of Implementation (MOI) which is available here:  http://infinibandta.org/content/pages.php?pg=technology_methods_of_implementation.

The significance of this testing, is that we were able to not only achieve 25Gb/s speed per lane (100Gb/s total over 4 lanes), but we were also able to analyze data at that speed. The IBTA currently has both copper and active optical cables running at 100Gb/s that are also compliant with the latest InfiniBand specifications.

3M Company, Advanced Photonics, Inc, Amphenol, FCI, Finisar, Foxconn, Fujikura Ltd., Hitachi Cable America, Lorom Industrial, Mellanox, Molex, Samtec, Sumitomo, TE Connectivity and Volex attended PlugFest 24 and tested a total of 189 cables for both compliance and interoperability.

Intel, Mellanox and NetApp also tested a total of 17 devices including InfiniBand to Ethernet Gateways, Host Channel Adapters (HCAs), Switches and SRP Targets. These end points and switches provided the foundation for running approximately 1000 interoperability tests using the Open MPI test benchmark and the interconnects provided by the cable vendors listed above.

Anritsu InfiniBand ATD EDR Test Solution

Anritsu InfiniBand ATD EDR Test Solution

Agilent, Anritsu, Tektronix and Wilder Technologies all provided the latest generation of Test equipment needed to test 100Gb/s InfiniBand EDR cables. The IBTA PlugFest provides a great opportunity for all these companies to work together to improve InfiniBand and to ensure that the products are both robust and interoperable.

IBTA’s Plugfest events take place twice per year, during which the IBTA tests compliance with the InfiniBand architecture specification and interoperability with other InfiniBand products. The IBTA Plugfest 24 Integrators’ List has been released and features vendor devices and cables that successfully passed all required Integrators’ List compliance tests and interoperability procedures during Plugfest 24.

The IBTA Integrators’ List contains a list of compliant and interoperable products and is available here: http://infinibandta.org/content/pages.php?pg=integrators_list_overview.

For more information on the upcoming IBTA Plugfest being held in April 2014 check out the Plugfest website.

FDR InfiniBand Continues Rapid Growth on TOP500 Year-Over-Year

November 22nd, 2013

The newest TOP500 list of the world’s most powerful supercomputers was released at SC13 this week, and showed the continued adoption of Fourteen Data Rate (FDR) InfiniBand – the fastest growing interconnect technology on the list! FDR, the latest generation of InfiniBand technology, now connects 80 systems on the TOP500, growing almost 2X year-over-year from 45 systems in November 2012. Overall, InfiniBand technology connects 207 systems, accounting for over 40 percent of the TOP500 list.

InfiniBand technology overall connects 48 percent of the Petascale-capable systems on the list. Petascale-capable systems generally favor the InfiniBand interconnect due to its computing efficiency, low application latency and high speeds. More relevant highlights from the November TOP500 list include:

  • InfiniBand is the most used interconnect in the TOP100, connecting 48 percent of the systems, and in the TOP200, connecting 48.5 percent of the systems.

  • InfiniBand-connected systems deliver 2X the performance of Ethernet systems, while the total performance supported by InfiniBand systems continues to grow.

  • With a peak efficiency of 97 percent and an average efficiency of 86 percent, InfiniBand continues to be the most efficient of interconnects on the TOP500.

The TOP500 list continues to show that InfiniBand technology is the interconnect of choice for HPC and data centers wanting the highest performance, with FDR InfiniBand adoption as a large part of this solution. The graph below demonstrates this further:

TOP500 Results, November 2013

Image source: Mellanox Technologies

Delivering bandwidth up to 56Gb/s with application latencies less than one microsecond, InfiniBand enables the highest server efficiency and is ideal to carry multiple traffic types (clustering, communications, storage, management) over a single connection. As a mature and field-proven technology, InfiniBand is used in thousands of data centers, high-performance compute clusters and embedded environments that scale from two nodes up to clusters with thousands of nodes.

The TOP500 list is published twice per year and recognizes and ranks the world’s fastest supercomputers. The list was announced November 18 at the SC13 conference in Denver, Colorado.

Interested in learning more about the TOP500, or how InfiniBand performed? Check out the TOP500 website: www.top500.org.

bill_lee_square

Bill Lee, chair of Marketing Working Group (MWG) at IBTA

Visit the IBTA and OFA at SC13!

November 13th, 2013

Attending SC13? The IBTA will be teaming up once again with the OpenFabrics Alliance (OFA) to participate in a number of conference activities. The organizations will be exhibiting together at booth #4132 – stop by for access to:

  • Hands-on computing cluster demonstrations
  • IBTA cable compliance demonstration
  • IBTA & OFA member company exhibition map and SC13 news
  • Current and prospective member information
  • Information regarding OFA’s 2014 User Day and Developer Workshop

IBTA and OFA will also lead the discussion on the future of I/O architectures for improved application performance and efficiency during several technical sessions:

  • RDMA: Scaling the I/O Architecture for Future Applications,” an IBTA-moderated session, will discuss what new approaches to I/O architecture could be used to meet Exascale requirements. The session will be moderated by IBTA’s Bill Boas and will feature a discussion between top users of RDMA. The panel session will take place on Wednesday, November 20 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. in room 301/302/303.

  • Accelerating Improvements in HPC Application I/O Performance and Efficiency,” an OFA Emerging Technologies exhibit, will present to attendees ideas on how incorporating a new framework of I/O APIs may increase performance and efficiency for applications. This Emerging Technologies exhibit will take place at booth #3547. The OFA will also be giving a short talk on this subject in the Emerging Technologies theatre at booth #3947 on Tuesday, November 19 at 2:50 p.m.

  • OFA member company representatives will further develop ideas discussed in its Emerging Technologies exhibit during the Birds of a Feather (BoF) session entitled, “Discussing an I/O Framework to Accelerate Improvements in Application I/O Performance.” Moderators Paul Grun of Cray and Sean Hefty of Intel will lead the discussion on how developers and end-users can enhance and further encourage the growth of open source I/O software.

Bill Lee

Chair, Marketing Working Group (MWG)

InfiniBand Trade Association

Emulex Joins the InfiniBand Trade Association

October 30th, 2013

Emulex is proud to be a new member of the IBTA.  The IBTA has a great history of furthering the InfiniBand and RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) specifications, developing an active solution ecosystem and building market momentum around technologies with strong value propositions.  We are excited to be a voting member on the Organization’s Steering Committee and look forward tocontributing to relevant technical and marketing working groups, as well as participating in IBTA-sponsored Plugfests and other interoperability activities.

Why the IBTA?

Through our experience in building high performance, large-scale, mission critical networks we understand the benefits of RDMA.  Since its original implementation as part of InfiniBand back in 1999, RDMA has a well-proven track record of delivering better application performance, reduced CPU overhead and increased bandwidth efficiency in demanding computing environments.

Due to increased adoption of technologies such as cloud computing, big data analytics, virtualization and mobile computing, more and more commercial IT infrastructures are starting to run into the same challenges that supercomputing was forced to confront around performance bottlenecks, resource utilization and moving large data sets.  In other words, data centers supporting the Fortune 2000, vertical applications for media and entertainment or life sciences, telecommunications and cloud service providers are starting to look a lot more like the data centers at research institutions or systems on the TOP500 .  Thus, with the advent of RoCE, we see an opportunity to bring the benefits of RDMA that have been well-proven in high performance computing (HPC) markets to the mainstream commercial markets.

RoCE is a key enabling technology for converging data center infrastructure and enabling application centric I/O across a broad spectrum of requirements.  From supercomputing to share drives, RDMA deliveries broad based benefits for fundamentally more efficient network communications.  Emulex has a data center vision to connect, monitor and manage on a single unified fabric.  We are looking forward to supporting the IBTA, contributing to the advancement of RoCE and helping to bring RDMA to mainstream markets.

Jon Affled

Jon Affeld, senior director, marketing alliances at Emulex

IBTA Updates Integrators’ List Following PF23 Compliance & Interoperability Testing

September 25th, 2013

We’re proud to announce the availability of the IBTA April 2013 Combined Cable and Device Integrators’ List – a compilation of results from the IBTA Plugfest 23, during which we conducted the first-ever Enhanced Data Rate (EDR) 100Gb/s InfiniBand standard compliance testing.

IBTA’s updated Integrators’ List and our newest Plugfest testing is a testament to the IBTA’s commitment to advancing InfiniBand technology and ensuring its interoperability, as all cables and devices on the list successfully passed the required compliance tests and interoperability procedures. Vendors listed may now access the IBTA Integrators’ List promotional materials and a special marketing program for their products.

Plugfest 23 was a huge success, attracting top manufacturers and would not have been possible without donated testing equipment from the following vendors: Agilent Technologies, Anritsu, Molex, Tektronix and Wilder Technologies. We are thrilled with the level of participation and the caliber of technology manufacturers who came out and supported the IBTA.

The updated Integrators’ List is a tool used by the IBTA to assure vendors’ customers and end-users that manufacturers have made the mark of compliance and interoperability. It is also a method for furthering the InfiniBand specification. The integrator’s list is published every spring and fall following the bi-annual Plugfest and serves to assist IT professionals, including data center managers and CIOs, with their planned deployment of InfiniBand solutions.

We’ve already begun preparations for Plugfest 24, which will take place October 7-18, 2013 at the University of New Hampshire’s Interoperability Laboratory. For more information, or to register for Plugfest 24, please visit IBTA Plugfest website.

If you have any questions related to IBTA membership or Integrators’ List, please visit the IBTA website: http://www.infinibandta.org/, or email us: ibta_plugfest@soft-forge.com.

Rupert Dance, IBTA CIWG

Rupert Dance, IBTA CIWG