The top of the rack has long be the location of important networking devices in the datacenter. Generally held for a small switch or console server, it has recently become it’s own space in the market, with leaders like Cisco, Juniper and Huawei vying for it.
Recently Huawei released the CloudEngine 6800 Series giving 48 10GE and 4 40GE ports in 1U. Thats a very dense switch.
Huawei also has the 5800 series of switches which provide 48 GE, 4 10GE and 2 40GE ports in 1U. Again, a very nice ToR switch.
Cisco has the Catalyst 4500-X which offers 32 10GE and a modular uplink that will soon support 40GE all in 1U.
For smaller needs Cisco has the 3750-X which offers 48 GE and a modular uplink with 2 10GE in 1U.
Juniper has the EX4500 offering up to 48 10GE ports in a 1U space.
With all of these options, the choices are getting tough. In the next few months Router and Switch Analysis plan to test all of these devices and more to help you make an informed decision. We are also tracking the use of virtualized routers in the space, Cisco’s new Cloud Connected Solution includes the Cisco Cloud Services Router 1000v a virtualized router in their UCS boxes. The Cisco CSR 1000v is a software router that an enterprise or a cloud provider can deploy as a virtual machine (VM) in a provider-hosted cloud. It can run on any server that supports VMware ESXi or Citrix XenServer virtualization. It contains IOS networking and security features.
Cisco describes the CSR 1000V:
The Cisco Cloud Services Router (CSR) 1000v Series is comprised of single-tenant software routers in virtual form factor that deliver comprehensive WAN gateway functionality to multi-tenant, provider-hosted clouds. With the Cisco CSR 1000v Series, enterprises can transparently extend a WAN to off-premises clouds, and cloud providers can offer enterprise-class networking services to their tenants.