Dell expands campus, data center switches

New C9010 intros director/node architecture for enterprise; modular 25/50G added for data center

Dell this week expanded its campus and data center switching lineup with products designed simplify topologies and support new data rates.

In the campus, Dell unveiled the C9010 Network Director switch and the C1048P Rapid Access Node. These new switches are intended to flatten network topologies into two tiers but with logical connectivity to make those two tiers appear as one.

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The switches are based on Broadcom’s Trident II silicon, which incorporates a tagging mechanism for node-to-director connectivity and virtual grouping into a single management and administrative domain. Dell says this provides a single management view from access to core, and a single point of control for quality of service, policy provisioning, software upgrades, and programming software-defined attributes.

This same node-to-director tagging technique is employed by Juniper Networks in its QFabric switching architecture.

Dell says its existing N-series switches can participate in this architecture through a software upgrade.

The C9010 is an 8RU chassis that can house up to 248 10G and 60 40G ports in half-width line cards. The switch features 4.8Tbps of total throughput and can be upgraded with 100G full-width line cards in the future, Dell says.

It can support 2,000 1G PoE+ capable virtual ports initially, and 4,000 in the future with the C1048P access node as its on-ramp. The C1048P supports 48 10/100/1000BASE-T PoE+ ports in 1RU, and two SFP+ uplinks for connectivity back to the C9010.

The C1048P can be deployed stand-alone, or in a stacked configuration up to eight units high.

The C9010/1048P combo or standalone offerings will go up against Cisco’s Catalyst 6807XL and HP’s 10504 switches, Dell says.

For the data center, Dell rolled out the S6100-ON. Based on Broadcom’s Tomahawk chipset, the S6100-ON is a modular 2RU switch that supports 32 ports of 100G, 64 ports of 40G, 128x10G, 128x25G and 64x50G.

The S6100-ON also supports CXP connectors for connectivity to legacy 100G environments, and can run third party operating systems in addition to Dell’s OS9.

The S6100-ON is Dell’s second 25/50G offering. The company rolled out the 1RU, fixed form factor Z9100 back in April.

Cisco, Arista and Pica8 also have 25/50G offerings.

The C9010 and C1048P will be available in October. Dell says they’ll cost 30% to 35% less than the per port list price of Cisco’s Catalyst 6800.

The S6010-ON will be available in the first quarter of 2016. Dell said pricing will be competitive with Arista’s 7060CX-32 and 7260QX-64, which start at under $1,000 per 100G port.

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