External LAN connectivity

OSA-Express6S is designed for high-speed communication or to consolidate file servers onto IBM Z with an External LAN. The workloads can be Internet Protocol-based (IP) or non-IP based. OSA-Express6S and RoCE are integrated hardware features optimized for your mainframe Ethernet local area network (LAN) connections.

The RoCE Express feature is designed to support high-performance system interconnections. It provides the RDMA capability exploited in the Shared Memory Communications-RDMA (SMC-R) protocol, and can also be utilized in Linux for both RDMA and standard TCP/IP workloads.

Overview of OSA- Express6S and RoCE

OSA-Express6S

  • Available in various bandwidths
  • Easily configured to operate in multiple modes
  • Supports various protocols and functions

OSA adapter

  • Contains an IBM ASIC to handle packet construction, inspection, and routing
  • Allows packets to flow between host memory and the LAN at line speed without firmware intervention

OSA firmware

  • Works in conjunction with operating systems on the platform
  • Uses the Queued Direct Input/output (QDIO) architecture to provide an interface for ‘value-add’ functions

Multiple Image Facility (MIF)

  • Enables OSA channels to be shared across logical partitions and configured to multiple channel subsystems
  • Supports up to 640 separate operating system IP networking stacks on a single OSA channel.

The RoCE Express 2 feature

  • Supports high-performance system interconnect
  • Provides the RDMA capability exploited in the Shared Memory Communications-RDMA (SMC-R) protocol
  • Can be utilized in Linux for both RDMA and standard TCP/IP workloads

Learn more on cable types and distances

Read “Planning for Fiber Optic Links, GA23-1406” in the Library section

Explore more IBM Z advantages

Learn about IBM mainframes

Learn about mainframe capabilities

Learn about mainframe technologies

Get more information about networking