IBM® Storage Networking SAN128B-6

What can IBM Storage Networking SAN128B-6 do for you?

A next-generation high-speed switch, IBM® Storage Networking SAN128B-6 is designed for flexible integration in large-scale storage networks. NVMe-ready SAN128B-6 enables efficient use of today’s flash storage, and provides advanced security, automation and orchestration capabilities that can simplify operations—from instantiating virtual machines and workload balancing to monitoring traffic. SAN128B-6 offers an expandable set of available b-type Gen 6 Fibre Channel ports for extreme scalability and advanced control features to simplify management.


Adapt to demanding workloads

Adapt to storage growth and demanding workloads with a high-density, 128-port 32 Gbps b-type Gen 6 Fibre Channel switch.

Optimize performance

Optimize performance and enhance reliability with advanced monitoring for NVM Express (NVMe).

Simplify integration

Integrate NVMe-ready solutions without a rip-and-replace.

Automate repetitive tasks

Simplify end-to-end management of large-scale environments and accelerate operations by automating repetitive tasks.

Provide real-time alerts

Provide proactive, real-time monitoring and alerting of storage input/output (I/O) health and performance with integrated network sensors.

Monitor performance

Enable virtual machine (VM) visibility in a storage fabric to monitor and optimize performance and identify anomalies.

Key features of IBM Storage Networking SAN128B-6

Simple scalability with industry-leading port density

Read the data sheet (PDF, 104 KB)

SAN128B-6 delivers 128 Fibre Channel ports in an elegant 2U chassis, for greater scalability and space efficiency. With 96 32 Gbps enhanced small form-factor pluggable (SFP+) ports and 8 4×32 Gbps Q-Flex ports, its compact design enables data centers to deliver more connectivity with fewer switches. Built for flexibility and density, SAN128B-6 offers cost-effective, pay-as-you-grow scalability, expanding from 48 to 128 ports with Ports on Demand (PoD).

Increased productivity with automation

IT organizations spend much of their time performing daily management tasks, such as inventory reporting. With automation, IT organizations can significantly improve their efficiency and decrease the risk of operational mistakes. By integrating Representational State Transfer (RESTful) APIs directly into its switch and management products, IBM provides through its b-type Storage Networking portfolio a broad range of choices to enable any SAN management solution.

Stability for always-on businesses

SAN128B-6 with Fabric Vision technology delivers a breakthrough hardware and software solution that helps simplify monitoring, increase operational stability and reduce costs. Fabric Vision technology includes IO Insight and VM Insight, which provide deeper visibility into both SCSI and NVMe traffic, helping administrators quickly identity and analyze problems.

IBM Network Advisor

IBM Network Advisor simplifies b-type Gen 6 Fibre Channel management and helps organizations proactively diagnose and resolve issues to maximize uptime, increase operational efficiency and reduce costs. The wizard-driven interface dramatically reduces deployment and configuration times by allowing fabrics, switches and ports to be managed as groups. Customizable dashboards display performance and health indicators out of the box, including all data captured using Fabric Vision technology.

Technical specifications

Product Number
  • F96: back to front airflow (Front/Port Side Exhaust)
  • N96: front to back airflow (Rear/Non Port Side Exhaust)
Hot-swappable components Small form-factor pluggables (SFPs
  • Width: 44.0 cm (17.32 in.)
  • Height: 8.67 cm (3.41 in.)
  • Depth: 60.96 cm (24 in.)
Weight 21.31 kg (47.00 lb) with two power supply field-replaceable units (FRUs), and three fan FRUs without transceivers.
Warranty One-year; customer-replaceable unit (CRU) and on-site, 9×5 next-business-day response; warranty service upgrades are available.
Port Speed 4/8/10/16/32 Gbps port speeds and capable of supporting 128 Gbps speeds; 10 Gbps optionally programmable to fixed port speed. Auto-sensing of 4×32 / 4×16 / 4×8 /4×4 Gbps speeds on the QSFP ports with FOS v8.2.0 or later
Fibre Channel Ports 96 SFP+ ports capable of operating at 4/8/10/16/32 Gbps Fibre Channel auto-sensing speeds; 8 QSFP ports capable of operating at 4×32 / 4×16 / 4×8 / 4×4 Gbps Fibre Channel speeds. Offers a base configuration of 48 ports, two 24-port SFP+ PoD, and one 32-port QSFPPoD. The switch has a total of eight 32 Gbps QSPF ports. This allows users to grow from 48 ports to 128 ports. Supports F/E/EX_Port and D_Port types on the SFP+ ports and only F/E/EX_Port and D_Port types on the QSFP ports with Fabric OS (FOS) v8.2.0 or later.
Optional features Please refer to the IBM Storage Networking SAN128B-6 Redbooks Product Guide to review most current optional features.