Internets of Interest:14 Sep 2011

Collection of useful, relevant or inane places on the the Internets for 14 Sep 2011:

  • FCoE over 10GBase-T – Proably not reliable enough – JDSU, who manufacture network components, indicating the 10GBase-T is probably not reliable enough for FCoE due to high Bit Error Rate.

    A primary concern, however, is that the bit error rate (BER) performance of a typical 10GBase-T fabric is barely better than 1×10-12. While this is what the specification calls for, it is still significantly less than the performance typically seen in SAN environments – on average, the BER of MM 850nm FC transceivers is 10-16 to 10-18.

    Not surprising when you think about, after all, there is no copper standard for FC for this exact reason. The problem is that FC can only tolerate frame loss at 1 in 10^-8 (they should have designed a proper protocol).

  • The Case for FCoE Terminology « The Data Center Overlords – FCoE is less of standard and more of a sort of idea of how to keep “life in the old girl for a couple more years”. The level of vendor incomprehension, and lack of quality education leads to exactly the problems that Tony talks about here

    FCoE, as a term, is very broad: It means that you’re taking a Fibre Channel frame and encapsulating it into an Ethernet frame. That’s it. There’s only one “FCoE” method in terms of this encapsulation. However, my point is that there are a number of very different ways you can go about moving those FCoE frames onto your Ethernet network.

  • Disabling NBT via DHCP Option 43 – Astorino Networks – I hadn’t thought about NetBIOS defaults when using Cisco IOS DHCP but Joe Astorino has:

    This will be a quick summary of how to disable NetBios over TCP/IP (AKA NBT) in an environment where your Cisco router provides DHCP services. First, a little bit of very brief background. NetBIOS is an ancient session layer protocol that was used in early versions of Windows for sharing resources between computers on a LAN.  In the old days, NetBIOS utilized another protocol called NetBEUI to provide the transport and network layer functions.  As networks evolved, one problem was that NetBEUI was not a routable protocol, but people wanted to use it across different IP networks.  Thus, NetBIOS over TCP/IP was born (NBT).  NBT is effectively encapsulating your NetBIOS traffic inside IP packets, so you can route them across different networks.

    Time to revisit some old designs.

  • BrandonTek » Blog Archive » SonicWALL-on-a-Stick – Brandon has a great looking post aobut using SonicWall firewalls and VLANs. Makes the point that one switch with VLANs is better than individual switches. Good introduction to fundamental issues.

    The concept behind “ROAS” is that instead of taking a router and assigning multiple ports to it belonging to different network segments, you consolidate by utilizing 802.1Q trunking on a port which will then carry all VLAN’s over that port. This greatly increases scalability, just imagine if you had ten different network segments, do you have ten available physical ports you would want to dedicate to each network? It would not scale very well!

  • How does Apple make money? – SplatF

    Apple makes money by selling iPhones, iPads, Macs, and iPods — hardware gadgets. (And a lot of money, at that: $24 billion of profit on $100 billion of sales over the past year.)Apple does not make very much money from selling iTunes songs and videos, iOS and Mac apps, iAds, or other software and services. That stuff is essential to the Apple ecosystem, as it makes Apple hardware more desirable and more useful, which helps Apple sell more iPhones, iPads, Macs, and iPods. But it’s not a big profit driver for Apple.

    In case you hadn’t noticed, this is how Cisco makes it money too. Although it talks a lot about software, and licenses, and features etc Cisco makes it’s money from selling the hardware. The software exists to sell more hardware, not vice versa. It’s like the leather seats in your car, really they have very little to to with the car and how it works, but really know a comfortable car seat when you sit in ti.

  • Onageristic Analysis – Wi-Fi That Won’t Die | Aerohive Networks Blog– You will take all the fun out of competitive analysis if you have to tell truth. And as a customer, we expect, and regularly get delivered,  mistruths, comparison on non-relevant products, feature distortion, truth barriers and obfuscation.Where would blogging be if there was no dis-honesty to expose (don’t answer that) ?

    So, to that end, I’m going to close with a shout-out to our competitors in the hopes that they can get their competitive analysis right. Nothing would make me happier than to see them have accurate analysis against our products, because I was once put on the spot, “Devinator, name one negative aspect of Aerohive’s technology.

  • Cisco UCS Power Calculator – Cisco UCS power calculator – very impressive piece of work that details the power consumption to very detailed levels. Nicely done. Warning: it is written in Adobe Flash so make sure you are running on mains power when using.
  • Daring Fireball Linked List: Google’s Customers

    Why do people complain that Google doesn’t offer customer support via the phone? Of course they do. For their actual customers: advertisers.

    Same thing with resellers and vendors. Who is the real customers of Brocade & Cisco ? The end user or the reseller ? Who gets the support and special access ? And why ?

  • 30 Truly Useful Mac Apps for Professional Writers | Mac.AppStorm – Didn’t realise there was this many apps for writing text. And say five or six different methods to approaching writing. This is why you don’t use MS Word, these are MUCH better for writing.

    Today we’ll take a look at thirty of the best utilities around to help serious writers in their work. Whether you want a better way to work with Markdown or need something to help you plot out the scenes in your next novel, this roundup has just what you’re looking for.

  • ENH: ASA needs same RRI functionality as IOS , Open CSCsx67450 – great enhancement request for cisco asa Currently ASA install and keeps reverse routes for L2L VPN tunnels and we are requested to change this behavior to inject those routes when the tunnel comes up/ Possible workarounds: Two options to overcome the issue: Please reference CSCsx67450
  • Cobra Ink System – Continuous ink system for your inkjet printer. Great idea of strapping half litre ink canisters to the side of your printer as a commercial product.
  • FLURB, a Webzine of Astonishing Tales.

    A Webzine of Astonishing Tales, Issue #12, Fall-Winter, 2011

    Collection of science fiction stores – free to air.

  • Brandon Kim

    Thanks for the pingback. What a wonderful website you have….keep up the good work….

  • stu

    Always good to read your comments and interesting links that you pull out of the interwebs.
    On that top article, note that it is a year old and from what I’ve heard, it is not an accurate representation of what we can expect to see. The reason that we didn’t have FCoE on 10GBase-T was due to power and cost limitation in creating CNAs and ASICs, not the BER. I’m am assured from a few sources that we will see 10GBase-T on a lot more solutions soon, including those that support FCoE.
    The bigger question when it comes to cabling is are we at the point of diminishing returns from copper and how much of the 10Gb and higher environments will just switch over to optical (regardless of protocol). 

    • Etherealmind

      I doubt that’s correct. The whole purpose of OM3 fibre was to ensure the PHY was as high fidelity as possible, otherwise why not use 62.5um fibre. 

      Notwithstanding, my view is that there are no circumstances where 10GBaseT should be used and that the IEEE has wasted time pursuing another pointless standard. Power, reliability, ridiculous cabling requirements are just some of negatives. 

      It really is time that the IEEE showed some leadership and looked to the future instead of yesterday’s technology. While they dither about, vendors are moving to bypass slow and tedious IEEE process.