During the last few years, the storage industry has eliminated the performance bottlenecks of the SCSI protocol and SAS/SATA interface SSDs. In their place are NVMe SSDs, which connect at the speed of PCIe. The next step for the industry is to network NVMe SSDs and DIMMs by extending the reach of PCIe with support for the NVMe over Fabrics speciﬁcations. Within the next few years, the prevalent architecture for networked ﬂash storage will be NVMe SSDs and DIMMs interconnected with NVMe over Ethernet.
With Solarﬂare technology your server, storage system or software business will beneﬁt from supporting NVMe over TCP without loss in performance. Key beneﬁts of deploying NVMe over TCP include:
With NVMe over TCP, add-on Ethernet extensions such as Converged Ethernet (aka DCB) and RDMA which are required to support NVMe over RoCE, are eliminated. NVMe over TCP simply and elegantly uses the TCP transport native to every Ethernet environment.
Because NVMe over TCP uses the native Ethernet transport, the storage fabric works out of the box with basic L2 switches and NICs from any vendor. No special expertise or equipment is needed to support DCB and RDMA extensions.
Any existing infrastructure that uses TCP/IP is a candidate to upgrade to NVMe over TCP.
With NVMe over TCP’s inherent simplicity and ease-of-use, fewer human and capital resources are needed to develop, deploy and operate NVMe over TCP storage fabrics.
Solarﬂare has developed a commercially available version of NVMe over TCP, utilising the native Ethernet transport. Storage fabrics built to support NVMe over TCP provide the same performance as NVMe over RoCE, but with better scalability and without the complexity and cost of NVMe over RoCE which requires Dataentre Bridging Ethernet extensions.
Your server, storage system or software can support NVMe over TCP storage fabrics by integrating Solarﬂare initiator and storage target Linux kernel drivers. Because the Initiator and the Target use TCP, Ethernet NICs can be used at either end as long as its driver supports NVMe over TCP. The drivers are currently pre-standard. Once the industry standard is ratiﬁed, Solarﬂare will provide an upgraded compliant driver.
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