Server virtualization has laid the foundation for the growth of cloud computing, with hypervisor offerings such as VMware vSphere® driving that adoption. The demands of today’s IT managers are driven by the need to reduce costs associated with virtualized and cloud deployments, as well as the ability to handle the increased performance, virtual machines (VMs) and scale brought on by next-generation technology adoption. Integration with Emulex I/O connectivity solutions and management tools gives VMware vSphere customers the ability to balance functionality, speed and ease of use. Emulex I/O connectivity solutions, including its new LightPulse® 16Gb Fibre Channel (16GFC) Host Bus Adapters (HBAs), provide complete support for VMware software users, as well as I/O management support and integration spanning VMware virtualization management platforms and hypervisors.
16GFC adoption is being driven by the power of next-generation hypervisors, such as VMware vSphere 5.1, now with VMs which are capable of supporting up to 64 virtual CPUs, which demand increased storage I/O bandwidth and improved latency performance. Emulex’s long-standing relationship and time-to-market leadership on 16GFC have enabled Emulex and VMware to bring in-box drivers for the next generation of Fibre Channel to the market. This integration with VMware enables customers to leverage the increased virtual machine file system (VMFS) scalability and storage VMware vMotion® enhancements of VMware vSphere® 5.1.
Emulex I/O technology and management addresses the following virtualized data center needs:
16GFC In-Box Drivers
Emulex LightPulse 16GFC adapters provide in-box driver support for VMware vSphere 5.1. These new adapters enable VMware platforms to scale cloud and VM density to reduce costs. Emulex LightPulse 16GFC HBAs deliver full 16GFC bandwidth (1600MB per second per port) in VMware environments¹, with 16GFC adapters and in-box drivers for use with VMware vSphere 5.1.
Support for Highly Virtualized Data Centers and Cloud Environments
Emulex 16GFC adapters feature industry-leading performance with significantly increased input/output operations per second (IOPS) and twice the data throughput of 8GFC adapters² for highly virtualized data centers, greater VM density required for cloud deployments and the performance needed to match current and next-generation Intel servers with more cores and more memory. This level of bandwidth is necessary to effectively support up to four parallel disk migrations per storage transfer operation capability and the Storage I/O Control capabilities within VMware vSphere 5.1.
Increasing VM Densities
Emulex 16GFC adapters leverage Emulex vScale™ for superior scalability in VMware vSphere 5.1 virtualized server environments, supporting up to 255 virtual functions (VFs), 1024 Message Signal Interrupts Extended (MSI-X) and 8192 concurrent logins and open exchanges, up to four times the number supported by competing 16GFC HBAs,³ enabling support for more VMs per server than ever before.
Tightly Integrated and Time-Saving I/O Management
OneCommand Manager for VMware vCenter Server enables comprehensive control of Emulex fabric (Fibre Channel HBA) and network (FCoE, NIC, iSCSI) connectivity solutions from VMware’s vCenter Server management console, using either the desktop client or the vSphere 5.1 Web Client.
Proactive I/O Management
Through Emulex OneCommand® Vision, customers gain proactive I/O management, maximized I/O resource utilization and enhanced performance and availability by monitoring and analyzing critical I/O performance metrics, all from the applications perspective. The new release of Vision 3.0 expands device support to include Direct Attached Storage (DAS) and logical storage devices.
For customers leveraging 8GFC technology within VMware vSphere 5.1, upgrading is simple, with full backward compatibility, a common driver stack and management tools across multiple generations of I/O connectivity products.
Emulex is also collaborating with VMware on the development of Virtual eXtensible LAN (VXLAN) technology. VXLAN, a proposed new standard that enables overlay networks, allows virtualized workloads to seamlessly communicate or move across server clusters and data centers. VXLANs will enable a new virtualized overlay network architecture for efficient and fluid movement of virtual resources across cloud infrastructures, leading the way for large scale and cloud scale VM deployments. Demand for overlay networking is being driven by the need to reduce the costs of deploying and managing a virtualized server workloads and hybrid cloud deployments.
Emulex is a VMware Technology Alliance Partner (TAP) program member and a participant in the VMware I/O Partner Vendor Program (IOVP).