Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Intel introduces 10Gig cards with I/O acceralaration technology

Quick update, two days ago Intel announced its 10 Gig Ethernet card based on its I/O accelaration technology. Intel is promoting an alternative to TCP and RDMA offload wuth a card that can work better with the processor's I/O capabilities. Basically Intel's strategy is to promote its processors while discounting ethernet cards. This product will a[pparently be launched in September with Inte's Caneland platform serving 4-socket 4-core Xeon processors. I will dig up some more research literature about this product in the coming days.

Friday, July 20, 2007

IEEE HSSG approves PAR and 5 criteria

Quick update, from the archives of the IEEE HSSG public reflector, the PAR and 5 Criteria has been approved by the HSSG. The objectives now include supporting 40 Gig Ethernet over a distance of of 100m, and support 100 Gig Ethernet over a distance of 40km on single-mode fiber. Support will also be provided for OTN.

This is a big win for 40 Gig E proponents, whose support was considerably weak until January this year. It will be interesting to see how the working group handles the tricky issue of dealing with 40 Gig and 100 Gig physical layer challenges simultaneously.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Presentation for IEEE HSSG meet

Presentations for the IEEE HSSG meet next week have been uploaded at the IEEE HSSG website. Some of the presentations I found interesting are from Dell and Deutsche Telekom about the use of 40/100 Gig Ethernet from their points of view.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Standardization of 40 Gig vs 100 Gig Ethernet

Next week at the IEEE 802.3 plenary in SanFrancisco, the High Speed Study Group (HSSG) will meet to gather consensus on a 100 Gbps Ethernet standardization activity. There has been considerable support within the HSSG committee for an interim 40 Gig Ethernet standard, or a standard which is interoperable between 40 Gig and 100 Gig. There have been several news reports covering this battle since the last plenary meet in Geneva in May 2007, unfortinately I have not found time to research this and write about it in the past month in this blog. Here are some interesting articles that I found on a Google search:

Controversy threatens 100G standards work

Group pushes 100 Gigabit Ethernet

To those unfamiliar with the process of standardization, the Study Group has to develop sufficient consensus to have a Project Authorization Request (PAR) and resposes to 5 Criteria which cover (i) Broad Market Potential (ii) Compatibility with existing standards (iii) Distinct Identity (iv) Technical Feasibility and (v) Economic Feasibility. I believe the 5 Criteria of the HSSG has already been decided. Once the Study Group develops consensus, the IEEE forms a standardization committee which develops the standard (also known as the task force). If the HSSG is unable to gather a consensus, then the IEEE may scrap the creation of the standard or create a new Study group with new deadlines. The HSSG has already taken 2 extensions to submitting the PAR.

While I will keep you posted about developments in next week's plenary, please do post your comments on this issue. I am of the opinion that wif a technology is sufficiently mature, it ought to be standardized irrespective of what volumes and market it may drive. Also the standard must taken into account driving a low price point for the technology so that volumes grow up. As an example, although the 10 Gig Ethernet standard is about a couple of years old, 10 Gig NIC volumes are still verry low. One of the reasons I see here is that the standard mandates support for a distance over 300 mts which drives the cost of the PHY devices very high, and thus prevents lowering the entry price point of this technology. Hope the same doesn't happen to the HSSG standard.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Infonetics Research Group PON and FTTH report

Apologies for not having any blog updates for about a month, it has been a pretty dry June, and I was vacationing for a bit. Am now recharged :), ready to blog for another year. By the way, this September will mark the two year anniversary of this blog.

The Infonetics Research PON and FTTH Equipment and Subscribers" report released last week was very encouraging. Worldwide PON sales are up to $336 million in the first quarter of 2007, while Ethernet FTTH (including EPON) sales are up to $81 million.

Some other good news are:
- Korea is on track to add 700,000 to 800,000 EPON subscribers by the end of 2007.
- EPON subscribers make up 64% of worldwide subscribers, BPON 33%, GPON 3% in 2006. However, this market share will change very soon as Verizon deploys GPON in 2007. The report also quotes Verizon already having 500,000 FiOS customers.

TThe report also predicts high growth for FTTH technologies as service providers aim to deliver more and more bandwidth to the end-user to provide enhanced quality video-on-demand, peer-to-peer networking, online gaming and other high bandiwdth services.