The Emulex LightPulse LP21000 family of Converged Network Adapters (CNAs) are intelligent multi-protocol adapters that provide host LAN and Fibre Channel SAN connectivity over 10Gb/s Ethernet using Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) and Enhanced Ethernet functionality. Unrivaled scalability and industry-leading virtualization support make the dual-port LP21002 CNA an ideal solution for server I/O consolidation.
Leveraging eight generations of advanced, field-proven Fibre Channel technology, the PCI Express-based LP21000 family meets the robust interoperability and reliability requirements of corporate data centers. The design leverages Emulex’s proven enterprise class drivers, firmware and hardware architectures, while delivering the sophisticated capabilities required to manage multiple types of data flow concurrently without disrupting application performance.
Emulex LightPulse CNAs provide investment protection by leveraging existing storage management tools and processes for FCoE‑connected devices. The LP21000 family features streamlined installation and management for both Fibre Channel and FCoE attached devices, yet offers the capability to isolate and support multiple differentiated concurrent traffic flows in a converged environment.
Enhanced Ethernet (EE)
The LP21000 family of CNAs enables Fibre Channel traffic to be directly carried over Ethernet alongside networking traffic.
FCoE eliminates the need to have two independent networks carrying storage and networking traffic—thereby, easing bandwidth management and offering significant cost savings. The Emulex CNA architecture combines the functionality of industry-standard Network Interface Cards (NICs) with Emulex’s industry-leading Fibre Channel HBAs, seamlessly converging the traffic over a shared lossless Ethernet network. Emulex CNAs deliver the latest stateless offloads and dynamic bandwidth allocation to maximize performance.
Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE)
FCoE combines the efficiency of the Fibre Channel protocol with the ubiquity of an Enhanced Ethernet network, while leveraging the mature storage management software and tools available with Fibre Channel. FCoE enables the convergence of Fibre Channel and Ethernet traffic and expands SAN economics to newly virtualized servers providing an evolutionary approach to convergence that leverages proven Fibre Channel technology. FCoE extends existing Fibre Channel fabric and storage investments and further reduces total cost of ownership (TCO) by enabling the use of existing SAN management tools, skills and processes.
Containing Cost with Unmatched Business Agility and Resilience
Today, data center managers must keep pace with unrelenting server growth, while managing limitations in staff size, floor space, power and cooling. Efforts to reduce data center complexity, management costs, and power consumption are increasingly being met by consolidation, virtualization and convergence initiatives. As workloads are consolidated on blades and virtualized servers, LAN and SAN connectivity requirements have grown, with a typical server having six to ten gigabit Ethernet connections as well as multiple Fibre Channel connections. In an effort to reduce the number of cable connections, IT managers have found appealing the concept of a unified fabric—a network capable of handling data, clustering and storage traffic.
Emulex LightPulse CNAs perform the network convergence that enables a unified fabric for controlling costs and enhancing power efficiency, while delivering unmatched virtual machine (VM) optimized services and powerful management capabilities. The LP21000 family of FCoE CNAs supports QoS enhancements, including lossless Ethernet, enabling unified fabric support. The LP21000 family provides IT managers with installation and management capabilities designed to minimize reboots and further simplify deployment, delivering unmatched business resilience. Emulex’s firmware-based architecture enables feature and performance upgrades without costly hardware changes. In addition, advanced error checking features and enhanced end-to-end data integrity provide for the highest levels of operational continuity.
Ecosystem of Partners
Emulex actively supports standards and works with its ecosystem partners to deliver unmatched interoperability in a converged network.
Emulex LightPulse CNA Architecture
The LP21000 provides Converged Network Adapter functionality by appearing to the host as two PCI devices—a network adapter and Fibre Channel adapter. Host networking and storage drivers communicate with the appropriate PCI function in the LP21000. I/O operations are processed by the respective functionality of the CNA, and in the case of a networking transaction, delivered to the lossless Media Access Control (MAC) for delivery to the unified fabric. For Fibre Channel transactions, Fibre Channel frames are sent to the FCoE encapsulation engine, and then transferred to the lossless MAC for delivery to the unified fabric.
Received traffic is handled much the same way. Incoming traffic is processed by the lossless MAC, then filtered based on FCoE ethertype. Non FCoE traffic delivered to the Ethernet NIC, and FCoE traffic decapsulated by the FcoE engine, are then forwarded to the Fibre Channel HBA device for further processing. The block is then relayed to the appropriate host device driver.
- Leverages eight generations of advanced, field-proven Fibre Channel technology
- Common driver model works across all Emulex LightPulse FCoE CNAs and Fibre Channel HBAs
- Delivers lossless 10Gb/s Enhanced Ethernet support with dynamic allocation of networking and storage bandwidth
- Supports comprehensive networking stack virtualization optimizations and Emulex LightPulse virtualization enhancements, including N_Port ID Virtualization (NPIV) functionality
- Provides failover and load balancing support for storage and networking stacks
- Simplifies upgrades of new firmware releases by minimizing server reboots
- Efficient centralized administration via powerful management tools
- Delivers superior performance and efficient host utilization
- Provides investment protection by seamlessly integrating into existing SANs and enabling common management practices across CNA & HBA environments
- Supports IT server consolidation, energy conservation and TCO initiatives
- Allows application of SAN management best practices, tools and processes within virtualized server environments
- Improves IT staff productivity through simplified deployment and management