Bottleneck detection in the b-type fabric
JonTate 110000B0RP Visits (5708)
Bottlenecks are, well, a pain in the neck, as anyone who has worked in IT well knows. Often there is little information to ascertain what the problem is and diagnosis can be time consuming and often fruitless. And this is a problem that can be exacerbated by the more complex SAN environments that exist these days, and if you couple this with the speeds at which the SAN can now operate, then any bottleneck can have an immediate noticeable effect.
So, how do we mitigate this? Well the first thing is to make sure that the detection tools are up to par and fit for purpose so that any bottleneck can be quickly identified, and then to take steps to ensure that it doesn't happen again. As most readers will know IBM has a long-standing OEM relationship with Brocade Communications, and IBM "re-badges" their products into the IBM b-type portfolio. This obviously includes software and hardware, and it is this combination that has allowed great advances in the ability to detect any anomalies in the network including, but not limited to, bottleneck detection.
Bottleneck Detection was introduced in Brocade FOS v6.3.0 with monitoring for device latency conditions, and then enhanced in Brocade FOS v6.4.0 with added support for congestion detection on both E_Ports and F_Ports. Brocade FOS v6.4 also added improved reporting options and simplified configuration capabilities. The Brocade FOS v6.3.1b release introduced enhancements to improve the accuracy of detecting device latency. Bottleneck Detection does not require a license and is supported on 4 Gbps, 8 Gbps, and 16 Gbps platforms.
All that said, we have just released an update to our Fabr