This IBM® Redbooks® publication introduces the products, concepts, and technology in the IBM System StorageTM SAN Routing portfolio, which is based on Cisco products and technology. It also discusses the features of each product, and offers examples of how you can deploy and use them. The book targets storage network administrators, system designers, architects, and IT professionals who sell, design, or administer SANs.
The rapid spread and adoption of production storage area networks (SANs) has fueled the need for multiprotocol routers. The routers provide improved scalability, security, and manageability by enabling devices in separate SAN fabrics to communicate without merging fabrics into a single, large SAN fabric. This capability enables clients to initially deploy separate SAN solutions at the departmental and data center levels. Then, clients can consolidate these separate solutions into large enterprise SAN solutions as their experience and requirements grow and change.
Alternatively, multiprotocol routers can help to connect existing enterprise SANs for a variety of reasons. For example, the introduction of Small Computer System Interface over IP (iSCSI) provides for the connection of low-end, low-cost hosts to enterprise SANs. The use of an Internet Protocol (IP) in the Fibre Channel (FC) environment provides for resource consolidation and disaster recovery planning over long distances. And the use of FC-FC routing services provides connectivity between two or more fabrics without having to merge them into a single SAN.
To derive the maximum benefit from this book, you should already be familiar with SANs. Otherwise, we recommend that you first read the following IBM Redbooks publications:
IBM TotalStorage: SAN Product, Design, and Optimization Guide, SG24-6384
Introduction to Storage Area Networks, SG24-5470
Implementing an IBM/Cisco SAN, SG24-7545