Virtualization Technology News and Information
Mellanox ConnectX EN 10GigE NIC with VMware Virtualization Software Proven to Deliver Breakthrough Server Utilization
Mellanox® Technologies, Ltd. (NASDAQ:MLNX) (TASE:MLNX), a leading supplier of semiconductor-based, server and storage interconnect products, today announced that its ConnectX EN 10GigE NIC adapters facilitate maximum server application processing performance in virtualized data center environments. Recent benchmarks demonstrate Mellanox adapters maintain an excellent 9.6 Gb/s throughput as the number of virtual machines (VMs) in VMware ESX Server 3.5 is scaled up to 16 in multi-core CPU environments. This helps deliver improved server utilization as more VMs can be deployed per physical server and application I/O performance can be maintained or enhanced. ConnectX ENs leading performance optimizes data center server infrastructure and provides significant dollar and power consumption savings by enabling more VMs per physical server. These adapters target the estimated install base of 3 million virtualized servers as of 2007 expected to grow to 15-20 million by 2012.

ConnectX EN supports all networking features enabled in VMware ESX Server 3.5, including support for VMwares NetQueue specification for boosting I/O performance, said Thad Omura, vice president of product marketing at Mellanox Technologies. ConnectX EN delivers compelling VM scaling, server utilization and cost benefits in multi-core CPU environments improving productivity, efficiency and enabling corporations to do more with less.

ConnectX EN 10GigE NIC adapters offer leading-edge hardware-based I/O virtualization features. These features are compatible with and complement PCI Single Root I/O Virtualization features and AMD®-V and Intel®-VT features to deliver advanced, secure and granular levels of I/O services to applications running in VMs. Both LAN and iSCSI SAN (storage area network) traffic can be consolidated over the same 10GigE NIC, and in the future, FC SAN connectivity will be enabled using the emerging FCoE (Fibre Channel over Ethernet) standard.

In tests conducted by Mellanox using Dell® servers (Dell 1950 8 cores Clovertown Intel Xeon® CPU E5410 @ 2.33GHz) running VMware ESX Server 3.5, 9.6 Gb/s throughput was achieved using traffic from 5 virtual machines (SLES10 with 2.6.23 kernel based)*. Bandwidth was measured using the IXIA IxChariot benchmarking tool between VMs running on two physical servers. The throughput was sustained at 9.6 Gb/s as the number of virtual machines were scaled to 16, enabling significantly higher server utilization without any I/O bottlenecks. CPU utilization results indicate that this I/O throughput can be sustained with 5 CPU cores, leaving 3 CPU cores free for other application usage. On an average, 2 VMs can run per CPU core and sustain the full I/O throughput.

Mellanox offers a complete family of ConnectX EN 10 Gigabit Ethernet adapters to support a wide variety of cabling options including UTP, CX4 for copper and SR, LR and LRM for fiber optics. Mellanox ConnectX EN provides data centers with a rich set of availability, performance and QoS features enabling virtualization, and supports emerging technologies like FCoE (Fibre Channel-Over-Ethernet) and CEE (Converged Enhanced Ethernet) on a single adapter providing IO convergence.

VMware ESX Server 3.5 certified drivers for Mellanox ConnectX EN will be generally available in the second quarter of 2008.

Visit Mellanox Technologies at VMworld Europe 2008

Come visit Mellanox (Booth #5) at VMworld Europe 2008, February 26-28, 2008, to see the latest demonstrations of Mellanox InfiniBand and Ethernet adapter cards with VMware ESX Server 3.5.

During the conference, Sujal Das, senior director of product management at Mellanox Technologies, will present Delivering Maximum Bang for the Buck with Unified I/O Options in VMware ESX 3.5. The presentation will be held on Thursday, February 28, at 10:15 am, in room Redaction 2.

Published Wednesday, February 27, 2008 12:01 PM by David Marshall
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