Introduction to storage area networks by Jon Tate; International Business Machines Corporation.

By Jon Tate; International Business Machines Corporation. International Technical Support Organization.; et al

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1 Fabric A Fibre Channel SAN employs a fabric to connect devices. A fabric can be as simple as a single cable connecting two devices. However, the term is most often used to describe a more complex network utilizing hubs, switches and gateways. So lut ion s Manage Connect Se rvi ce sa nd Su pp o rt Exploit Server & Storage Figure 24. 2 Storage Area Network Environment Historically, interfaces to storage consisted of parallel bus architectures (such as SCSI and IBM’s Bus and Tag) that supported a small number of devices.

Each device connected to a port on the switch can access any other device connected to any other port on the switch, enabling an on-demand connection to every connected device. Various FC switch offerings support both switched fabric and/or loop connections. As the number of devices increases, multiple switches can be cascaded for expanded access (fanout). The Market Perception of Storage Area Networks 15 As switches allow any-to-any connections, the switch and management software can restrict which other ports a specific port can connect to.

There is also a need for managing partitions of the SAN from a central console. The big challenge is to ensure that all components are interoperable and work with the various management software packages. Management of the SAN can be divided into various disciplines defined in Enterprise Storage Resources Management (ESRM). These disciplines should be implemented across all heterogeneous resources connected to the SAN, with the objective of providing one common user interface across all resources.

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