Purchase Guide about SFP-10G-SR, SFP-10G-LR, and SFP-10G-LRM

You will find three common types of 10G SFP+ modules – SFP-10G-SR, SFP-10G-LRM, and SFP-10G-LR, typically used for optical fiber. However, in practical use, how should we choose among these three modules? This article will analyze it for you.

Exploring the Versatility of SFP-10G-SR, SFP-10G-LR, and SFP-10G-LRM Modules

SFP-10G-SR can be paired with OM3 multimode fiber (MMF), with a transmission distance of up to 300 meters. It is acclaimed as the lowest cost and lowest power consumption module utilizing VCSEL.

SFP-10G-LR is a module using a distributed feedback laser (DFB). It operates at a wavelength of 1310nm, and its transmission distance through single-mode fiber (SMF) can reach 10 kilometers. It is used for building wiring in large campus areas and even for establishing a Metropolitan Area Network (MAN).

SFP-10G-LRM supports a link length of 220m on standard Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) grade multimode fiber. To ensure compliance with FDDI grade, OM1, and OM2 fiber specifications, the transmitter should be coupled with a mode conditioning patch cable. Applications on OM3 or OM4 do not require a mode conditioning patch cable.

Conclusion

In general, when the transmission distance is less than 300 meters, it is recommended to use SFP-10G-SR. However, if you have other requirements, such as a 200m transmission with a mode bandwidth of 500 MHz km, then an SFP-10G-LRM transceiver is needed. For single-mode transmission within 300 meters, choosing SFP-10G-LRM is an economical solution. But for transmissions of 2-10 kilometers, SFP-10G-LR is the only choice.

Click to learn more: SFP-10G-SR vs SFP-10G-LRM vs SFP-10G-LR, Which to Choose? | FS Community

How FS Can Help

FS is capable of offering a diverse range of 10GSFP+ models, and we can tailor solutions to meet your specific requirements. If you are still contemplating, take action now by clicking to register, and benefit from complimentary technical support.

SFP+ MSA: Key Information You Should Be Aware Of

In data communication, the seamless transfer of high-bandwidth data between network devices is paramount. At the heart of this efficiency lies the Small Form-Factor Pluggable Plus Multi-Source Agreement (SFP+ MSA), a standardized framework shaping the design and functionality of optical transceivers. Explore with us the transformative role of SFP+ MSA, a driving force in standardizing interoperability for optical transceivers beyond mere specification.

Navigating the Impact of SFP+ MSA in Optical Transceivers

Definition and Expansion of MSA

MSA, an abbreviation for Multi-Source Agreement, is a protocol that enables different manufacturers to produce optical module products with similar basic functionalities and interoperability. The interface types of optical modules from various manufacturers were once diverse. To address the lack of interoperability, multiple manufacturers joined forces to create an organization dedicated to standardizing specifications for the interface types, installation, and functionalities of optical modules. MSA emerged as a supplement to IEEE standards. For optical modules, the MSA standard not only defines their physical dimensions but also outlines their electrical and optical interfaces, creating a comprehensive standard for optical modules.

Significance of SFP+ MSA in Networking Standards

Due to the MSA standard defining the physical dimensions and interface types of optical modules, suppliers strictly adhere to MSA standards during system design to ensure interoperability and interchangeability between optical modules. For end-users, the MSA standard holds crucial significance for two main reasons:

Firstly, the MSA standard offers users a variety of choices. As long as an optical module complies with the MSA standard and demonstrates good compatibility, customers can choose any optical module needed from any third-party supplier.

Secondly, concerning costs, the MSA standard, to some extent, prevents the optical module market from being monopolized by certain major manufacturers. This situation contributes to lowering the network construction costs for end-users.

Exploring the Key Features of SFP+ MSA

Unlocking the potential of SFP+ MSA involves understanding its key features. This section will explore the small form-factor design, high-speed data transmission capabilities, interoperability across vendors, compatibility with various fiber types, and the importance of compliance and certification. These features collectively contribute to the versatility and efficiency of SFP+ modules, redefining connectivity standards in modern networking environments.

Small Form-Factor Design

The compact form factor of SFP+ modules enables high port density in network equipment, a crucial aspect for contemporary data centers aiming to save rack space and optimize spatial layouts. Additionally, this design also supports hot-swapping, providing flexibility in network management.

High-Speed Data Transmission

SFP+ modules are designed to handle high-speed data transmission, with data rates exceeding 10 Gbps and reaching up to 25 Gbps. This high bandwidth is essential for applications demanding swift and reliable data transfer, such as in high-performance computing and data center interconnects.

Interoperability Across Vendors

The key goal of the SFP+ MSA is to ensure interoperability among modules from different vendors. This standardization allows network administrators to mix and match SFP+ modules from various manufacturers without compatibility concerns, promoting a vendor-neutral environment.

Compatibility with Various Fiber Types

Support various types of optical fibers, including single-mode and multi-mode fibers. This versatility in fiber compatibility enhances the adaptability of SFP+ modules to different networking scenarios and infrastructures.

Compliance and Certification

SFP+ modules undergo rigorous testing to ensure compliance with standards such as MSA, IEEE, GR-xx-CORE, ITU-T, guaranteeing reliable performance and interoperability in various aspects.

Unlocking Excellence in SFP+ MSA Advantages

SFP+ MSA brings several advantages to network infrastructures.

Flexible and Scalable Networks

The standardization provided by SFP+ MSA enhances network flexibility by allowing the deployment of modules from different manufacturers. It also facilitates the scalability of networks. As data demands increase, administrators can easily upgrade network capacities by adding or replacing SFP+ modules, ensuring that the infrastructure can evolve with changing requirements.

Seamless Integration in Diverse Environments

SFP+ modules find applications in diverse environments, ranging from enterprise data centers to telecommunications networks. The standardization ensures these modules integrate seamlessly, providing consistent performance across various settings.

Cost-Efficiency in Network Deployments

The interoperability of SFP+ modules reduces dependence on a single vendor, fostering a competitive market that can lead to cost savings for network infrastructure deployments. Administrators can select modules based on specific requirements. This flexibility is crucial for network administrators seeking cost-effective solutions without compromising performance.

Unleashing the Potential of SFP+ Modules in Applications

In the previous discussion, we covered aspects of SFP+ concerning MSA standards. Now, let’s unveil the applications of SFP+ in various environments. From data centers to telecommunications networks, the presence of SFP+ modules is ubiquitous.

Data Center Connectivity

SFP+ modules are essential for data center connectivity, providing high-speed links that ensure efficient communication among servers, storage devices, and networking equipment.

High-Performance Computing (HPC)

In the realm of high-performance computing, SFP+ modules support the high-speed data transmission required for parallel computing and scientific simulations.

Telecom and Network Infrastructure

SFP+ modules are integral to telecommunications networks and general infrastructure, serving as the foundation for dependable and high-performance data transmission.

Conclusion

In summary, SFP+ MSA serves as a cornerstone in the realm of optical transceivers, providing standardized specifications that ensure interoperability, versatility, and performance. By embracing the standards set by SFP+ MSA, the networking industry can continue to build robust, efficient, and future-ready infrastructures that meet the demands of modern data transmission.

Unleashing Small Business Potential: Demystifying the Applications of 10G Multi-Rate Optical Modules

In the digital age, small businesses increasingly rely on efficient network infrastructure to support business growth and information transfer. However, as many small business owners have experienced, networking faces its own set of challenges. Next, we will explore suitable optical networking solutions around these issues.

Small Business Networking Challenges

Bandwidth Bottlenecks

It’s a common challenge for small business networks, restricting the speed and efficiency of data transfer. Traditional networks typically provide businesses with only a limited bandwidth, resulting in network slowdowns during peak hours or when handling substantial data loads. This not only affects employee productivity but also has implications for hinders overall business growth.

Performance Limitations

Traditional networks face performance limitations when dealing with business growth and extensive data demands. As an enterprise expands, the rigidity of traditional network architecture becomes evident, rendering it incapable of effectively adapting to new business requirements. This, in turn, can result in network congestion, delays, and instability, thereby affecting the day-to-day operations of a business.

Low Maintenance Efficiency

With a shortage of dedicated IT personnel, small businesses may encounter delays or insufficient monitoring, troubleshooting, and routine maintenance of network equipment. Concurrently, the manual nature of these monitoring and maintenance processes proves time-consuming and error-prone, thereby diminishing the overall efficiency of maintenance tasks.

Waste of Cable Resources

During the process of network transformation, many small business owners opt to abandon traditional cable deployments in favor of adopting fiber optic solutions, thereby rendering the original cables unusable and resulting in cable wastage.

These challenges not only affect employees’ efficiency but also exert a detrimental influence on overall business growth. Addressing these challenges necessitates the implementation of advanced technologies and optical networking solutions, which becomes crucial.

Unraveling the Wonders of the 10G Multi-Rate Optical Module

In this context, the utilization of 10G multi-rate optical modules serves as an effective solution to challenges encountered in small business networks, including bandwidth bottlenecks, performance limitations, low maintenance efficiency, and cable wastage. This adaptive Ethernet module supports rates of 100M, 1G, 2.5G, 5G, and 10G, contributing to the establishment of a more robust and reliable network infrastructure for small enterprises.

Therefore, FS has also introduced 10G multi-rate optical modules, assisting small business owners in better addressing these challenges. The transceiver delivers 10GBase-T throughput for distances of up to 30m over Cat6a/Cat7 copper cables using an RJ-45 connector. It complies with IEEE 802.3-2012, IEEE 802.3ab, and SFP MSA standards. Each SFP transceiver module undergoes individual testing, ensuring compatibility with various switches, routers, servers, network interface cards (NICs), and more. Known for its low power consumption, this easily installable, hot-swappable 10G SFP transceiver is well-suited for enterprise networking in LAN applications and other networking environments utilizing copper connections.

Optimize Your Business Connectivity: Selecting Better Optical Networking Solution

The introduction and implementation of 10G multi-rate optical modules in optical networking solutions can markedly enhance network performance. This application supports larger data transmission capacity and reduces the delay in data transmission. This not only improves network efficiency for enterprises, but also provides scalability for future business growth. The following is the application of this multi-rate module in actual scenarios of small businesses.

File Sharing and Data Storage

The 10G Multi-Rate Optical Module significantly enhances the efficiency of file sharing and data storage by providing a data transfer rate of up to 10Gbps. Employees can swiftly access and transmit large-capacity files, and multiple users can concurrently access the file server. With the growth of business operations, the 10G multi-rate optical module offers scalability to adapt to the escalating demand for data storage, providing an enduring solution for sustainable file sharing in enterprises.

Video Conferencing and Real-Time Collaboration

In video conferencing scenarios, the 10G multi-rate optical module ensures high-definition video transmission, delivering a clear and seamless meeting experience for remote teams. This is crucial for real-time collaboration and communication. The low-latency feature guarantees the timeliness required for video and audio transmission in conferences, enhancing the overall effectiveness and engagement. The reliability of the module ensures stable connections, preventing signal interruptions or quality degradation.

Cloud Service Access and Data Center Connectivity

The 10G multi-rate optical module facilitates swift access to cloud services for small enterprises, enabling rapid uploading and downloading of large volumes of data to the cloud. It supports the demands of cloud computing and storage, providing enterprises with a more efficient experience of cloud services. Moreover, it enhances the data security of cloud services, safeguarding sensitive information for enterprises.

Optical Networking Solutions Tailored for Small Businesses

In order to tackle challenges like low network operational efficiency, cable wastage, and limitations in bandwidth and performance, small businesses require a customized optical networking solution. As a prominent solutions provider in the industry, FS has specifically crafted a 1/10GBASE-T Solution for Campus & Enterprise Network, featuring three key value propositions.

Enhanced Cable Utilization

Optimize the use of existing copper cable resources during network construction, minimizing the deployment of optical cables. This not only ensures the network’s normal development but also significantly reduces investment costs.

High Flexibility and Scalability

The 10G multi-rate optical module supports speeds ranging from 100M to 10G and can operate at different rates based on bandwidth requirements. This provides a high degree of flexibility to accommodate varying needs.

Simplified Maintenance

In contrast to traditional optical modules, these modules lack complex DDM information, simplifying the troubleshooting process. The streamlined operations, coupled with the elimination of the need for optical instruments, enhance overall troubleshooting efficiency.

Conclusion

In summary, small businesses facing network challenges may consider adopting the technology of 10G multi-rate optical modules. By providing greater bandwidth and higher performance, this technology facilitates the establishment of a robust, flexible, and efficient network infrastructure, promoting sustainable business growth. In the digital era, such network upgrades are not only an investment but also a crucial step for small businesses to open up broader development opportunities.

Related resource: Optical Networking Solutions for SMB

SFP-10G-SR vs SFP-10G-LR: How to choose?

Optical fiber communication technology is crucial for efficient information transmission, significantly enhancing data transmission speeds. Optical modules, a vital component of this technology, play a key role. Among the parameters associated with optical modules, common ones include SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR. When making a purchase decision, it’s pivotal for you to understand the difference between SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR before choosing products.

What are the SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR

SFP refers to hot-pluggable small form factor modules. 10G represents its maximum transmission rate of 10.3 Gbps, which is suitable for 10 Gigabit Ethernet. SR and LR represent the transmission distance of the SFP 10g module.

SFP-10G-SR

SFP-10G-SR is designed for short-distance transmission, typically up to 300 meters over multimode fiber. Using 850 nm wavelength laser and LC bidirectional connector, it is easy to plug and install. The module supports hot-swappable function, which can be safely replaced while the device is running, with stable performance and reliability. In data center networks, SFP-10G-SR is often used for connections between servers to support high-speed data transmission. It is also suitable for enterprise network environments, especially in scenarios with high network performance requirements.

SFP-10G-LR

The SFP-10G-LR is specifically engineered for medium to long-distance transmissions, typically spanning 10 to 40 kilometers over single-mode fiber. Boasting a 1310nm wavelength laser and an LC bidirectional connector, it facilitates effortless and smooth installation. The compatibility of SFP-10G-LR with single-mode optical fiber makes it an ideal solution for fulfilling communication needs in medium to long-distance scenarios, including establishing connections between remote offices. Furthermore, it proves well-suited for constructing network backbones, enabling high-speed data transmission among diverse network devices.

Differences Between SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR

Transmission Distance: The primary distinction lies in their coverage range, with SFP-10G-SR for short distances and SFP-10G-LR for longer ones.

Fiber Compatibility: SFP-10G-SR works with multimode fiber, while SFP-10G-LR requires single-mode fiber.

Use Cases: SFP-10G-SR is optimal for intra-building connections, while SFP-10G-LR is suitable for inter-building or even metropolitan-area connections.

Wavelength: The SFP-10G-SR uses a laser with a wavelength of 850 nanometers, while the SFP-10G-LR uses a laser with a wavelength of 1310 nanometers.

How to Choose the Right Module

After understanding the difference between SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR, we will start from typical application scenarios, combining them with your network requirements, to provide guidance on selecting the appropriate SFP 10G optical module for you.

Data Center

When linking servers, storage devices, or network components within the data center, opt for SFP-10G-SR for short-distance connections like in-rack setups. For cross-rack connectivity, SFP-10G-LR is the best choice.

Intra-Enterprise Network

Establishing high-speed connections within the enterprise, such as inter-floor or inter-department links, demands tailored choices. For shorter intra-floor connections, select SFP-10G-SR. Opt for SFP-10G-LR when spanning different floors.

Remote Office/Branch Office

For network connections linking remote or branch offices with the headquarters, SFP-10G-LR is the preferred module due to its suitability for longer distances, ensuring coverage for remote locations.

Inter-City Data Transmission

When establishing high-speed data connections between cities, the preferred choice is SFP-10G-LR, thanks to its compatibility with longer fiber distances, addressing the needs of inter-city connections.

Budget Constraints

If facing budget limitations and the connection distance permits, SFP-10G-SR is generally the more economical option.

Unlocking the Potential of the SFP 10g module with FS Products

The burgeoning era of digitization has spurred a growing demand for optical modules across various sectors, including enterprise networks, data centers, campus networks, and metropolitan area networks. Building on the diverse applications of optical modules, as a premier network solutions provider, FS.COM offers a diverse range of hot-swappable SFP 10G modules designed to maximize uptime and streamline serviceability. Equipped with Digital Optical Monitoring (DDM) capabilities, each unit is meticulously customized and coded for full-function compatibility. FS products undergo rigorous testing and verification to ensure the seamless and reliable operation of your network.

The following table sorts out the products of these two models (SFP-10G-SR and SFP-10G-LR) on the FS. You can choose the most suitable one according to your needs.

ModelSFP-10G-SRSFP-10G-LR
Data Rate (Max)10.3125Gbps10.3125Gbps
Wavelength850nm1310nm
Cable Distance (Max)300m@OM3400m@OM410km
ConnectorDuplex LCDuplex LC
Transmitter TypeVCSELDFB
Cable TypeMMFSMF
TX Power-7.3~-1dBm-8.2~0.5dBm
Receiver Sensitivity< -11.1dBm<-14.4dBm
Power Consumption<1W≤1W
Operating Temperature0 to 70°C (32 to 158°F)0 to 70°C (32 to 158°F)
Application RangeOnly used for short distance connectionsOnly used for long distance connections

Conclusion

In short, which product to choose ultimately depends on your network layout and connectivity needs. The above considerations can help you quickly select the right product to achieve the best performance in your specific network environment. If you would like to learn about other types of SFP 10g modules, you can visit the following resources for more information.

Related resource: Other models of SFP 10g modules

400G Ethernet Manufacturers and Vendors

New data-intensive applications have led to a dramatic increase in network traffic, raising the demand for higher processing speeds, lower latency, and greater storage capacity. These require higher network bandwidth, up to 400G or higher. Therefore, the 400G market is currently growing rapidly. Many organizations join the ranks of 400G equipment vendors early, and are already reaping the benefits. This article will take you through 400G Ethernet market trend and some global 400G equipment vendors.

The 400G Era

The emergence of new services, such as 4K VR, Internet of Things (IoT), and cloud computing, raises connected devices and internet users. According to an IEEE report, they forecast that “device connections will grow from 18 billion in 2017 to 28.5 billion devices by 2022.” And the number of internet users will soar “from 3.4 billion in 2017 to 4.8 billion in 2022.” Hence, network traffic is exploding. Indeed, the average annual growth rate of network traffic remains at a high level of 26%.

Annual Growth of Network Traffic
Annual Growth of Network Traffic

Facing the rapid growth of network traffic, 100GE/200GE ports are unable to meet the demand for network connectivity from a large number of customers. Many organizations and enterprises, especially hyperscale data centers and cloud operators, are aggressively adopting next-generation 400G network infrastructure to help address workloads. 400G provides the ideal solution for operators to meet high-capacity network requirements, reduce operational costs, and achieve sustainability goals. Due to the good development prospects of 400G market, many IT infrastructure providers are scrambling to layout and join the 400G market competition, launching a variety of 400G products. Dell’Oro group indicates “the ecosystem of 400G technologies, from silicon to optics, is ramping.” Starting in 2021, large-scale deployments will contribute meaningful market. They forecast that 400G shipments will exceed 15 million ports by 2023, and 400G will be widely deployed in all of the largest core networks in the world. In addition, according to GLOBE NEWSWIRE, the global 400G transceiver market is expected to be at $22.6 billion in 2023. 400G Ethernet is about to be deployed at scale, leading to the arrival of the 400G era.

400G Growth

Companies Offering 400G Networking Equipment

Many top companies seized the good opportunity of the fast-growing 400G market, and launched various 400G equipment. Many well-known IT infrastructure providers, which laid out 400G products early on, have become the key players in the 400G market after years of development, such as Cisco, Arista, Juniper, etc.

400G Equipment Vendors
400G Equipment Vendors

Cisco

Cisco foresaw the need for the Internet and its infrastructure at a very early stage, and as a result, has put a stake in the ground that no other company has been able to eclipse. Over the years, Cisco has become a top provider of software and solutions and a dominant player in the highly competitive 25/50/100Gb space. Cisco entered the 400G space with its latest networking hardware and optics as announced on October 31, 2018. Its Nexus switches are Cisco’s most important 400G product. Cisco primarily expects to help customers migrate to 400G Ethernet with solutions including Cisco’s ACI (Application Centric Infrastructure), streamlining operations, Cisco Nexus data networking switches, and Cisco Network Assurance Engine (NAE), amongst others. Cisco has seized the market opportunity and is continuing to grow its sales with its 400G products. Cisco reported second-quarter revenue of $12.7 billion, up 6% year over year, demonstrating the good prospects of 400G Ethernet market.

Arista Networks

Arista Networks, founded in 2008, provides software-driven cloud networking solutions for large data center storage and computing environments. Arista is smaller than rival Cisco, but it has made significant gains in market share and product development during the last several years. Arista announced on October 23, 2018, the release of 400G platforms and optics, presenting its entry into the 400G Ethernet market. Nowadays, Arista focuses on its comprehensive 400G platforms that include various series switches and 400G optical modules for large-scale cloud, leaf and spine, routing transformation, and hyperscale IO intensive applications. The launch of Arista’s diverse 400G switches has also resulted in significant sales and market share growth. According to IDC, Arista networks saw a 27.7 percent full year switch ethernet switch revenue rise in 2021. Arista has put legitimate market share pressure on leader Cisco in the tech sector during the past five years.

Juniper Networks

Juniper is a leading provider of networking products. With the arrival of the 400G era, Juniper offers comprehensive 400G routing and switching platforms: packet transport routers, universal routing platforms, universal metro routers, and switches. Recently, it also introduced 400G coherent pluggable optics to further address 400G data communication needs. Juniper believes that 400G will become the new data rate currency for future builds and is fully prepared for the 400G market competition. And now, Juniper has become the key player in the 400G market.

Huawei Technologies

Huawei, a massive Chinese tech company, is gaining momentum in its data center networking business. Huawei is already in the “challenger” category to the above-mentioned industry leaders—getting closer to the line of “leader” area. On OFC 2018, Huawei officially released its 400G optical network solution for commercial use, joining the ranks of 400G product vendors. Hence, it achieves obvious economic growth. Huawei accounted for 28.7% of the global communication equipment market last year, an increase of 7% year on year. As Huawei’s 400G platforms continue to roll out, related sales are expected to rise further. The broad Chinese market will also further strengthen Huawei’s leading position in the global 400G space.

FS

Founded in 2009, FS is a global high-tech company providing high-speed communication network solutions and services to several industries. Through continuous technology upgrades, professional end-to-end supply chain, and brand partnership with top vendors, FS services customers across 200 countries – with the industry’s most comprehensive and innovative solution portfolio. FS is one of the earliest 400G vendors in the world, with a diverse portfolio of 400G products, including 400G switches, optical transceivers, cables, etc. FS thinks 400G Ethernet is an inevitable trend in the current networking market, and has seized this good opportunity to gain a large number of loyal customers in the 400G market. In the future, FS will continue to provide customers with high-quality and reliable 400G products for the migration to 400G Ethernet.

Getting Started with 400G Ethernet

400G is the next generation of cloud infrastructure, driving next-generation data center networks. Many organizations and enterprises are planning to migrate to 400G. The companies mentioned above have provided 400G solutions for several years, making them a good choice for enterprises. There are also lots of other organizations trying to enter the ranks of 400G manufacturers and vendors, driving the growing prosperity of the 400G market. Remember to take into account your business needs and then choose the right 400G product manufacturer and vendor for your investment or purchase.

Data Center Layout

Data center layout design is a challenging task requiring expertise, time, and effort. However, the data center can accommodate in-house servers and many other IT equipment for years if done properly. When designing such a modest facility for your company or cloud-service providers, doing everything correctly is crucial.

As such, data center designers should develop a thorough data center layout. A data center layout comes in handy during construction as it outlines the best possible placement of physical hardware and other resources in the center.

What Is Included in a Data Center Floor Plan?

The floor plan is an important part of the data center layout. Well-designed floor plan boosts the data centers’ cooling performance, simplifies installation, and reduces energy needs. Unfortunately, most data center floor plans are designed through incremental deployment that doesn’t follow a central plan. A data center floor plan influences the following:

  • The power density of the data center
  • The complexity of power and cooling distribution networks
  • Achievable power density
  • Electrical power usage of the data center

Below are a few tips to consider when designing a data center floor plan:

Balance Density with Capacity

“The more, the better” isn’t an applicable phrase when designing a data center. You should remember the tradeoff between space and power in data centers and consider your options keenly. If you are thinking of a dense server, ensure that you have enough budget. Note that a dense server requires more power and advanced cooling infrastructure. Designing a good floor plan allows you to figure this out beforehand.

Consider Unique Layouts

There is no specific rule that you should use old floor layouts. Your floor design should be based on specific organizational needs. If your company is growing exponentially, your data center needs will keep changing too. As such, old layouts may not be applicable. Browse through multiple layouts and find one that perfectly suits your facility.

Think About the Future

A data center design should be based on specific organizational needs. Therefore, while you may not need to install or replace some equipment yet, you might have to do so after a few years due to changing facility needs. Simply put, your data center should accommodate company needs several years in the future. This will ease expansion.

Floor Planning Sequence

A floor or system planning sequence outlines the flow of activity that transforms the initial idea into an installation plan. The floor planning sequence involves the following five tasks:

Determining IT Parameters

The floor plan begins with a general idea that prompts the company to change or increase its IT capabilities. From the idea, the data center’s capacity, growth plan, and criticality are then determined. Note that these three factors are characteristics of the IT function component of the data center and not the physical infrastructure supporting it. Since the infrastructure is the ultimate outcome of the planning sequence, these parameters guide the development and dictate the data centers’ physical infrastructure requirements.

Developing System Concept

This step uses the IT parameters as a foundation to formulate the general concept of data center physical infrastructure. The main goal is to develop a reference design that embodies the desired capacity, criticality, and scalability that supports future growth plans. However, with the diverse nature of these parameters, more than a thousand physical infrastructure systems can be drawn. Designers should pick a few “good” designs from this library.

Determining User Requirements

User requirements should include organizational needs that are specific to the project. This phase should collect and evaluate organizational needs to determine if they are valid or need some adjustments to avoid problems and reduce costs. User requirements can include key features, prevailing IT constraints, logistical constraints, target capacity, etc.

Generating Specifications

This step takes user requirements and translates them into detailed data center design. Specifications provide a baseline for rules that should be followed in the last step, creating a detailed design. Specifications can be:

  • Standard specifications – these don’t vary from one project to another. They include regulatory compliance, workmanship, best practices, safety, etc.
  • User specifications – define user-specific details of the project.

Generating a Detailed Design

This is the last step of the floor planning sequence that highlights:

  • A detailed list of the components
  • Exact floor plan with racks, including power and cooling systems
  • Clear installation instructions
  • Project schedule

If the complete specifications are clear enough and robust, a detailed design can be automatically drawn. However, this requires input from professional engineers.

Principles of Equipment Layout

Datacenter infrastructure is the core of the entire IT architecture. Unfortunately, despite this importance, more than 70% of network downtime stems from physical layer problems, particularly cabling. Planning an effective data center infrastructure is crucial to the data center’s performance, scalability, and resiliency.

Nonetheless, keep the following principles in mind when designing equipment layout.

Control Airflow Using Hot-aisle/Cold-aisle Rack Layout

The principle of controlling airflow using a hot-aisle/cold-aisle rack layout is well defined in various documents, including the ASHRAE TC9.9 Mission Critical Facilities. This principle aims to maximize the separation of IT equipment exhaust air and fresh intake air by placing cold aisles where intakes are present and hot aisles where exhaust air is released. This reduces the amount of hot air drawn through the equipment’s air intake. Doing this allows data centers to achieve power densities of up to 100%.

Provide Safe and Convenient Access Ways

Besides being a legal requirement, providing safe and convenient access ways around data center equipment is common sense. The effectiveness of a data center depends on how row layouts can double up as aisles and access ways. Therefore, designers should factor in the impact of column locations. A column can take up three or more rack locations if it falls within the row of racks. This can obstruct the aisle and lead to the complete elimination of the row.

Align Equipment With Floor and Ceiling Tile Systems

Floor and ceiling tiling systems also play a role in air distribution systems. The floor grille should align with racks, especially in data centers with raised floor plans. Misaligning floor grids and racks can compromise airflow significantly.

You should also align the ceiling tile grid to the floor grid. As such, you shouldn’t design or install the floor until the equipment layout has been established.

data center

Plan the Layout in Advance

The first stages of deploying data center equipment heavily determine subsequent stages and final equipment installation. Therefore, it is better to plan the entire data center floor layout beforehand.

How to Plan a Server Rack Installation

Server racks should be designed to allow easy and secure access to IT servers and networking devices. Whether you are installing new server racks or thinking of expanding, consider the following:

Rack Location

When choosing a rack for your data center, you should consider its location in the room. It should also leave enough space in the sides, front, rear, and top for easy access and airflow. As a rule of thumb, a server rack should occupy at least six standard floor tiles. Don’t install server racks and cabinets below or close to air conditioners to protect them from water damage in case of leakage.

Rack Layout

Rack density should be considered when determining the rack layout. More free space within server racks allows for more airflow. As such, you can leave enough vertical space between servers and IT devices to boost cooling. Since hot air rises, place heat-sensitive devices, such as UPS batteries, at the bottom of server racks, heavy devices should also be placed at the bottom.

Cable Layout

Well-planned rack layout is more than a work of art. Similarly, an excellent cable layout should leverage cable labeling and management techniques to ease the identification of power and network cables. Cables should have markings at both ends for easy identification. Avoid marking them in the middle. Your cable management system should also have provisions for future additions or removal.

Conclusion

Designing a data center layout is challenging for both small and established IT facilities. Building or upgrading data centers is often perceived to be intimidating and difficult. However, developing a detailed data center layout can ease everything. Remember that small changes in the plan during installation lead to costly consequences downstream.

Article Source: Data Center Layout

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Data Center Containment: Types, Benefits & Challenges

Over the past decade, data center containment has experienced a high rate of implementation by many data centers. It can greatly improve the predictability and efficiency of traditional data center cooling systems. This article will elaborate on what data center containment is, common types of it, and their benefits and challenges.

What Is Data Center Containment?

Data center containment is the separation of cold supply air from the hot exhaust air from IT equipment so as to reduce operating cost, optimize power usage effectiveness, and increase cooling capacity. Containment systems enable uniform and stable supply air temperature to the intake of IT equipment and a warmer, drier return air to cooling infrastructure.

Types of Data Center Containment

There are mainly two types of data center containment, hot aisle containment and cold aisle containment.

Hot aisle containment encloses warm exhaust air from IT equipment in data center racks and returns it back to cooling infrastructure. The air from the enclosed hot aisle is returned to cooling equipment via a ceiling plenum or duct work, and then the conditioned air enters the data center via raised floor, computer room air conditioning (CRAC) units, or duct work.

Hot aisle containment

Cold aisle containment encloses cold aisles where cold supply air is delivered to cool IT equipment. So the rest of the data center becomes a hot-air return plenum where the temperature can be high. Physical barriers such as solid metal panels, plastic curtains, or glass are used to allow for proper airflow through cold aisles.

Cold aisle containment

Hot Aisle vs. Cold Aisle

There are mixed views on whether it’s better to contain the hot aisle or the cold aisle. Both containment strategies have their own benefits as well as challenges.

Hot aisle containment benefits

  • The open areas of the data center are cool, so that visitors to the room will not think the IT equipment is not being cooled sufficiently. In addition, it allows for some low density areas to be un-contained if desired.
  • It is generally considered to be more effective. Any leakages that come from raised floor openings in the larger part of the room go into the cold space.
  • With hot aisle containment, low-density network racks and stand-alone equipment like storage cabinets can be situated outside the containment system, and they will not get too hot, because they are able to stay in the lower temperature open areas of the data center.
  • Hot aisle containment typically adjoins the ceiling where fire suppression is installed. With a well-designed space, it will not affect normal operation of a standard grid fire suppression system.

Hot aisle containment challenges

  • It is generally more expensive. A contained path is needed for air to flow from the hot aisle all the way to cooling units. Often a drop ceiling is used as return air plenum.
  • High temperatures in the hot aisle can be undesirable for data center technicians. When they need to access IT equipment and infrastructure, a contained hot aisle can be a very uncomfortable place to work. But this problem can be mitigated using temporary local cooling.

Cold aisle containment benefits

  • It is easy to implement without the need for additional architecture to contain and return exhaust air such as a drop ceiling or air plenum.
  • Cold aisle containment is less expensive to install as it only requires doors at ends of aisles and baffles or roof over the aisle.
  • Cold aisle containment is typically easier to retrofit in an existing data center. This is particularly true for data centers that have overhead obstructions such as existing duct work, lighting and power, and network distribution.

Cold aisle containment challenges

  • When utilizing a cold aisle system, the rest of the data center becomes hot, resulting in high return air temperatures. It also may create operational issues if any non-contained equipment such as low-density storage is installed in the general data center space.
  • The conditioned air that leaks from the openings under equipment like PDUs and raised floor tend to enter air paths that return to cooling units. This reduces the efficiency of the system.
  • In many cases, cold aisles have intermediate ceilings over the aisle. This may affect the overall fire protection and lighting design, especially when added to an existing data center.

How to Choose the Best Containment Option?

Every data center is unique. To find the most suitable option, you have to take into account a number of aspects. The first thing is to evaluate your site and calculate the Cooling Capacity Factor (CCF) of the computer room. Then observe the unique layout and architecture of each computer room to discover conditions that make hot aisle or cold aisle containment preferable. With adequate information and careful consideration, you will be able to choose the best containment option for your data center.

Article Source: Data Center Containment: Types, Benefits & Challenges

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The Chip Shortage: Current Challenges, Predictions, and Potential Solutions

The COVID-19 pandemic caused several companies to shut down, and the implications were reduced production and altered supply chains. In the tech world, where silicon microchips are the heart of everything electronic, raw material shortage became a barrier to new product creation and development.

During the lockdown periods, some essential workers were required to stay home, which meant chip manufacturing was unavailable for several months. By the time lockdown was lifted and the world embraced the new normal, the rising demand for consumer and business electronics was enough to ripple up the supply chain.

Below, we’ve discussed the challenges associated with the current chip shortage, what to expect moving forward, and the possible interventions necessary to overcome the supply chain constraints.

Challenges Caused by the Current Chip Shortage

As technology and rapid innovation sweeps across industries, semiconductor chips have become an essential part of manufacturing – from devices like switches, wireless routers, computers, and automobiles to basic home appliances.

devices

To understand and quantify the impact this chip shortage has caused spanning the industry, we’ll need to look at some of the most affected sectors. Here’s a quick breakdown of how things have unfolded over the last eighteen months.

Automobile Industry

in North America and Europe had slowed or stopped production due to a lack of computer chips. Major automakers like Tesla, Ford, BMW, and General Motors have all been affected. The major implication is that the global automobile industry will manufacture 4 million fewer cars by the end of 2021 than earlier planned, and it will forfeit an average of $110 billion in revenue.

Consumer Electronics

Consumer electronics such as desktop PCs and smartphones rose in demand throughout the pandemic, thanks to the shift to virtual learning among students and the rise in remote working. At the start of the pandemic, several automakers slashed their vehicle production forecasts before abandoning open semiconductor chip orders. And while the consumer electronics industry stepped in and scooped most of those microchips, the supply couldn’t catch up with the demand.

Data Centers

Most chip fabrication companies like Samsung Foundries, Global Foundries, and TSMC prioritized high-margin orders from PC and data center customers during the pandemic. And while this has given data centers a competitive edge, it isn’t to say that data centers haven’t been affected by the global chip shortage.

data center

Some of the components data centers have struggled to source include those needed to put together their data center switching systems. These include BMC chips, capacitors, resistors, circuit boards, etc. Another challenge is the extended lead times due to wafer and substrate shortages, as well as reduced assembly capacity.

LED Lighting

LED backlights common in most display screens are powered by hard-to-find semiconductor chips. The prices of gadgets with LED lighting features are now highly-priced due to the shortage of raw materials and increased market demand. This is expected to continue up to the beginning of 2022.

Renewable Energy- Solar and Turbines

Renewable energy systems, particularly solar and turbines, rely on semiconductors and sensors to operate. The global supply chain constraints have hurt the industry and even forced some energy solutions manufacturers like Enphase Energy to

Semiconductor Trends: What to Expect Moving Forward

In response to the global chip shortage, several component manufacturers have ramped up production to help mitigate the shortages. However, top electronics and semiconductor manufacturers say the crunch will only worsen before it gets better. Most of these industry leaders speculate that the semiconductor shortage could persist into 2023.

Based on the ongoing disruption and supply chain volatility, various analysts in a recent CNBC article and Bloomberg interview echoed their views, and many are convinced that the coming year will be challenging. Here are some of the key takeaways:

Pat Gelsinger, CEO of Intel Corp., noted in April 2021 that the chip shortage would recover after a couple of years.

DigiTimes Report found that Intel and AMD server ICs and data centers have seen their lead times extend to 45 to 66 weeks.

The world’s third-largest EMS and OEM provider, Flex Ltd., expects the global semiconductor shortage to proceed into 2023.

In May 2021, Global Foundries, the fourth-largest contract semiconductor manufacturer, signed a $1.6 billion, 3-year silicon supply deal with AMD, and in late June, it launched its new $4 billion, 300mm-wafer facility in Singapore. Yet, the company says its production capacity will only increase component production earliest in 2023.

TMSC, one of the leading pure-play foundries in the industry, says it won’t meaningfully increase the component output until 2023. However, it’s optimistic that the company will ramp up the fabrication of automotive micro-controllers by 60% by the end of 2021.

From the industry insights above, it’s evident that despite the many efforts that major players put into resolving the global chip shortage, the bottlenecks will probably persist throughout 2022.

Additionally, some industry observers believe that the move by big tech companies such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Google to design their own chips for cloud and data center business could worsen the chip shortage crisis and other problems facing the semiconductor industry.

article, the authors hint that the entry of Microsoft, Amazon, and Google into the chip design market will be a turning point in the industry. These tech giants have the resources to design superior and cost-effective chips of their own, something most chip designers like Intel have in limited proportions.

Since these tech giants will become independent, each will be looking to create component stockpiles to endure long waits and meet production demands between inventory refreshes. Again, this will further worsen the existing chip shortage.

Possible Solutions

To stay ahead of the game, major industry players such as chip designers and manufacturers and the many affected industries have taken several steps to mitigate the impacts of the chip shortage.

For many chip makers, expanding their production capacity has been an obvious response. Other suppliers in certain regions decided to stockpile and limit exports to better respond to market volatility and political pressures.

Similarly, improving the yields or increasing the number of chips manufactured from a silicon wafer is an area that many manufacturers have invested in to boost chip supply by some given margin.

chip manufacturing

Here are the other possible solutions that companies have had to adopt:

Embracing flexibility to accommodate older chip technologies that may not be “state of the art” but are still better than nothing.

Leveraging software solutions such as smart compression and compilation to build efficient AI models to help unlock hardware capabilities.

LED Lighting

The latest global chip shortage has led to severe shocks in the semiconductor supply chain, affecting several industries from automobile, consumer electronics, data centers, LED, and renewables.

Industry thought leaders believe that shortages will persist into 2023 despite the current build-up in mitigation measures. And while full recovery will not be witnessed any time soon, some chip makers are optimistic that they will ramp up fabrication to contain the demand among their automotive customers.

That said, staying ahead of the game is an all-time struggle considering this is an issue affecting every industry player, regardless of size or market position. Expanding production capacity, accommodating older chip technologies, and leveraging software solutions to unlock hardware capabilities are some of the promising solutions.

Added

This article is being updated continuously. If you want to share any comments on FS switches, or if you are inclined to test and review our switches, please email us via media@fs.com or inform us on social media platforms. We cannot wait to hear more about your ideas on FS switches.

Article Source: The Chip Shortage: Current Challenges, Predictions, and Potential Solutions

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The Most Common Data Center Design Missteps

Introduction

Data center design is to provide IT equipment with a high-quality, standard, safe, and reliable operating environment, fully meeting the environmental requirements for stable and reliable operation of IT devices and prolonging the service life of computer systems. Data center design is the most important part of data center construction directly relating to the success or failure of data center long term planning, so its design should be professional, advanced, integral, flexible, safe, reliable, and practical.

9 Missteps in Data Center Design

Data center design is one of the effective solutions to overcrowded or outdated data centers, while inappropriate design results in obstacles for growing enterprises. Poor planning can lead to a waste of valuable funds and more issues, increasing operating expenses. Here are 9 mistakes to be aware of when designing a data center.

Miscalculation of Total Cost

Data center operation expense is made up of two key components: maintenance costs and operating costs. Maintenance costs refer to the costs associated with maintaining all critical facility support infrastructure, such as OEM equipment maintenance contracts, data center cleaning fees, etc. Operating costs refer to costs associated with day-to-day operations and field personnel, such as the creation of site-specific operational documentation, capacity management, and QA/QC policies and procedures. If you plan to build or expand a business-critical data center, the best approach is to focus on three basic parameters: capital expenditures, operating and maintenance expenses, and energy costs. Taking any component out of the equation, you might face the case that the model does not properly align an organization’s risk profile and business spending profile.

Unspecified Planning and Infrastructure Assessment

Infrastructure assessment and clear planning are essential processes for data center construction. For example, every construction project needs to have a chain of command that clearly defines areas of responsibility and who is responsible for aspects of data center design. Those who are involved need to evaluate the potential applications of the data center infrastructure and what types of connectivity requirements they need. In general, planning involves a rack-by-rack blueprint, including network connectivity and mobile devices, power requirements, system topology, cooling facilities, virtual local and on-premises networks, third-party applications, and operational systems. For the importance of data center design, you should have a thorough understanding of the functionality before it begins. Otherwise, you’ll fall short and cost more money to maintain.

data center

Inappropriate Design Criteria

Two missteps can send enterprises into an overspending death spiral. First of all, everyone has different design ideas, but not everyone is right. Second, the actual business is mismatched with the desired vision and does not support the setting of kilowatts per square foot or rack. Over planning in design is a waste of capital. Higher-level facilities also result in higher operational and energy costs. A data center designer establishes the proper design criteria and performance characteristics and then builds capital expenditure and operating expenses around it.

Unsuitable Data Center Site

Enterprises often need to find a perfect building location when designing a data center. If you don’t get some site-critical information, it will lead to some cases. Large users are well aware of the data center and have concerns about power availability and cost, fiber optics, and irresistible factors. Baseline users often have business model shells in their core business areas that decide whether they need to build or refurbish. Hence, premature site selection or unreasonable geographic location will fail to meet the design requirements.

Pre-design Space Planning

It is also very important to plan the space capacity inside the data center. The raised floor to support ratio can be as high as 1 to 1, while the mechanical and electrical equipment needs enough space to accommodate. In addition, the planning of office and IT equipment storage areas also needed to be considered. Therefore, it is very critical to estimate and plan the space capacity during data center design. Estimation errors can make the design of a data center unsuitable for the site space, which means suspending project re-evaluation and possibly repurchasing components.

Mismatched Business Goals

Enterprises need to clearly understand their business goals when debugging a data center so that they can complete the data center design. After meeting the business goals, something should be considered, such as which specific applications the data center supports, additional computing power, and later business expansion. Additionally, enterprises need to communicate these goals to data center architects, engineers, and builders to ensure that the overall design meets business needs.

Design Limitations

The importance of modular design is well-publicized in the data center industry. Although the modular approach refers to adding extra infrastructure in an immediate mode to preserve capital, it doesn’t guarantee complete success. Modular and flexible design is the key to long-term stable operation, also meets your data center plans. On the power system, you have to take note of adding UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) capacity to existing modules without system disruption. Input and output distribution system design shouldn’t be overlooked, it can allow the data center to adapt to any future changes in the underlying construction standards.

Improper Data Center Power Equipment

To design a data center to maximize equipment uptime and reduce power consumption, you must choose the right power equipment based on the projected capacity. Typically, you might use redundant computing to predict triple server usage to ensure adequate power, which is a waste. Long-term power consumption trends are what you need to consider. Install automatic power-on generators and backup power sources, and choose equipment that can provide enough power to support the data center without waste.

Over-complicated Design

In many cases, redundant targets introduce some complexity. If you add multiple ways to build a modular system, things can quickly get complicated. The over-complexity of data center design means more equipment and components, and these components are the source of failure, which can cause problems such as:

  • Human error. Data statistics errors lead to system data vulnerability and increase operational risks.
  • Expensive. In addition to equipment and components, the maintenance of components failure also incurs more charges.
  • Design concept. If maintainability wasn’t considered by the data center design when the IT team has the requirements of operating or servicing, system operational normality even human security get impacts.

Conclusion

Avoid the nine missteps above to find design solutions for data center IT infrastructure and build a data center that suits your business. Data center design missteps have some impacts on enterprises, such as business expansion, infrastructure maintenance, and security risks. Hence, all infrastructure facilities and data center standards must be rigorously estimated during data center design to ensure long-term stable operation within a reasonable budget.

Article Source: The Most Common Data Center Design Missteps

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Impact of Chip Shortage on Datacenter Industry

As the global chip shortage let rip, many chip manufacturers have to slow or even halt semiconductor production. Makers of all kinds of electronics such as switches, PCs, servers are all scrambling to get enough chips in the pipeline to match the surging demand for their products. Every manufacturer, supplier and solution provider in datacenter industry is feeling the impact of the ongoing chip scarcity. However, relief is nowhere in sight yet.

What’s Happening?

Due to the rise of AI and cloud computing, datacenter chips have been a highly charged topic in recent times. As networking switches and modern servers, indispensable equipment in datacenter applications, use more advanced components than an average consumer’s PC, naturally when it comes to chip manufacturers and suppliers, data centers are given the top priority. However, with the demand for data center machines far outstripping supply, chip shortages may continue to be pervasive across the next few years. Coupled with economic uncertainties caused by the pandemic, it further puts stress on datacenter management.

According to a report from the Dell’Oro Group, robust datacenter switch sales over the past year could foretell a looming shortage. As the mismatch in supply and demand keeps growing, enterprises looking to buy datacenter switches face extended lead times and elevated costs over the course of the next year.

“So supply is decreasing and demand is increasing,” said Sameh Boujelbene, leader of the analyst firm’s campus and data-center research team. “There’s a belief that things will get worse in the second half of the year, but no consensus on when it’ll start getting better.”

Back in March, Broadcom said that more than 90% of its total chip output for 2021 had already been ordered by customers, who are pressuring it for chips to meet booming demand for servers used in cloud data centers and consumer electronics such as 5G phones.

“We intend to meet such demand, and in doing so, we will maintain our disciplined process of carefully reviewing our backlog, identifying real end-user demand, and delivering products accordingly,” CEO Hock Tan said on a conference call with investors and analysts.

Major Implications

Extended Lead Times

Arista Networks, one of the largest data center networking switch vendors and a supplier of switches to cloud providers, foretells that switch-silicon lead times will be extended to as long as 52 weeks.

“The supply chain has never been so constrained in Arista history,” the company’s CEO, Jayshree Ullal, said on an earnings call. “To put this in perspective, we now have to plan for many components with 52-week lead time. COVID has resulted in substrate and wafer shortages and reduced assembly capacity. Our contract manufacturers have experienced significant volatility due to country specific COVID orders. Naturally, we’re working more closely with our strategic suppliers to improve planning and delivery.”

Hock Tan, CEO of Broadcom, also acknowledged on an earnings call that the company had “started extending lead times.” He said, “part of the problem was that customers were now ordering more chips and demanding them faster than usual, hoping to buffer against the supply chain issues.”

Elevated Cost

Vertiv, one of the biggest sellers of datacenter power and cooling equipment, mentioned it had to delay previously planned “footprint optimization programs” due to strained supply. The company’s CEO, Robert Johnson, said on an earnings call, “We have decided to delay some of those programs.”

Supply chain constraints combined with inflation would cause “some incremental unexpected costs over the short term,” he said, “To share the cost with our customers where possible may be part of the solution.”

“Prices are definitely going to be higher for a lot of devices that require a semiconductor,” says David Yoffie, a Harvard Business School professor who spent almost three decades serving on the board of Intel.

Conclusion

There is no telling that how the situation will continue playing out and, most importantly, when supply and demand might get back to normal. Opinions vary on when the shortage will end. The CEO of chipmaker STMicro estimated that the shortage will end by early 2023. Intel CEO Patrick Gelsinger said it could last two more years.

As a high-tech network solutions and services provider, FS has been actively working with our customers to help them plan for, adapt to, and overcome the supply chain challenges, hoping that we can both ride out this chip shortage crisis. At least, we cannot lose hope, as advised by Bill Wyckoff, vice president at technology equipment provider SHI International, “This is not an ‘all is lost’ situation. There are ways and means to keep your equipment procurement and refresh plans on track if you work with the right partners.”

Article Source: Impact of Chip Shortage on Datacenter Industry

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