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CX11x, CX31x, CX710 (Earlier Than V6.03), and CX91x Series Switch Modules V100R001C10 Configuration Guide 13

The documents describe the configuration of various services supported by the CX11x&CX31x&CX91x series switch modules The description covers configuration examples and function configurations.
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FCoE Overview

FCoE Overview

This section describes the definition and functions of FCoE.

Data Center Network Convergence Trend

As shown in Figure 10-36, the local area network (LAN) and storage area network (SAN) of a traditional data center are deployed and maintained independently. The LAN transmits services between servers and between servers and clients, and the SAN transmits services between servers and storage devices.

As data centers develop rapidly and increasing servers are deployed, independent deployment of LANs and SANs results in the following problems:
  • Complex network: Service deployment is inflexible, network expansion is difficult, and network maintenance and management costs are high.

  • Low energy efficiency: Each server is configured with at least 4 to 6 network adapters, including network interface cards (NICs) connected to LANs and host bus adapters (HBAs) connected to SANs. Such settings increase power consumption and cooling costs.

Figure 10-36 Before and after data center network convergence

After the LAN and SAN are converged, the SAN and Ethernet LAN share the same integrated network infrastructure, simplifying network infrastructure.

Fiber Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) is used for network convergence.


FCoE is a network convergence technology defined by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), and is also an I/O consolidation solution based on the FC protocol.


After SAN and LAN networks are converged, the following issues occur:
  • FC traffic cannot be forwarded over Ethernet.
  • Ethernet cannot ensure lossless forwarding as the FC network.
FCoE and Data Center Bridging (DCB) address these issues:
  • FCoE encapsulates FC frames into Ethernet frames and controls FCoE traffic forwarding so that LANs and SANs share network resources. With FCoE technology, LAN and SAN networks can be converged.
  • DCB builds a lossless Ethernet network on a data center network. This technology enables traditional Ethernet to implement congestion control as on the FC SAN and provides QoS guarantee for FCoE services.


FCoE brings in the following benefits:

  • Reduces Total Cost of Ownership (TCO): FCoE allows LANs and SANs to share network resources. It integrates and fully uses distributed resources, reduces investments on SAN network infrastructure, simplifies network topology, and reduces network management and maintenance costs. Servers use converged network adapters (CNAs), which reduce electricity and cooling costs in data centers.
  • Saves investment: FCoE seamlessly integrates existing Ethernet and FC infrastructure on data center networks to maximize the return on investment on FC SAN infrastructure, including various FC SAN tools, and established FC SAN facilities and management architecture.
  • Enhances service flexibility: FCoE provides capabilities for all servers to access storage devices and allows virtual machine (VM) migrations. This implementation improves system flexibility and availability.
Updated: 2019-12-13

Document ID: EDOC1000041694

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