Affordable 10G SFP+ Switches for SMB Hyper-Converged Appliance Expansion

 

Hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) has been earning a good reputation in data centers, whether it is of the entire branch offices, the IT duties of small and medium businesses (SMBs) or the virtual desktop infrastructure deployments. HCI offers numerous integrated services such as backup, data protection and solid-state drive storage, and allows seamless management and expansion of various compute, storage and network devices, i.e., users can scale the network flexibly by adding a new appliance to the hyper-converged cluster. For SMBs, the requirements for network switches is not the same as large enterprises when adding a 10G appliance. This post is to suggest some affordable 10G SFP+ switches for SMBs during hyper-converged appliance (HCA) expansion.

10G SFP+ Switches Requirements for SMB HCA Expansion

In today’s SMBs, applications are requiring higher data rate and some management features. For a SMB with a considerable size, the core switches might be required to a fully-managed switch with strong capacity, high bandwidth and high port count. The switches for the connectivity of the cluster (compute, storage and network devices) may also have many ports. But when adding new appliance to the cluster, the switch usually needs not to be high port count or with high data rate. A 8-12 ports 10G SFP+ switch is generally enough for hyper-converged appliance expansion, which is rational considering the expenditure for expansion as well. The following table gives some 8-12 ports 10G SFP+ switches in the market for your reference.

Switch Model Ports Switching Capacity Fowarding Rate Switching Layer Price
Dell X4012 12 x 10G SFP+ 240 Gbps 178.6 Mpps L2+ $1,063.54
Netgear M4300-8X8F 8 x 10G SFP+ and 8 x 10GBASE-T 320 Gbps 238.1 Mpps L3 $1,719.00
Cisco SG500XG-8F8T 8 x 10G SFP+ and 8 x 10GBASE-T 320 Gbps 238.1 Mpps L3 $2,146.59
FS S5800-8TF12S 12 x 10G SFP+ and 8 x 1GBASE-T/SFP Combo 240 Gbps 178.6 Mpps L3 $1,699.00
D-link DXS-1210-12SC 10 x 10G SFP+ and 2 x 10GBASE-T/SFP+ Combo 240 Gbps 178.6 Mpps L3 $1,055.00

fs s5800-8tf12s

According to the information available, these switches can be got online well under $3K in brand new condition. Suppose that a SMB has a core switch which has a fabric capacity of 960 Gbps, and now it needs to add 5 nodes of 10G speed to the cluster for downstream, an 8-12 ports 10G SFP+ switch will not only give enough ports for current nodes and for uplink to the core, but also gives the SMB space to grow.

These switches have some features in common. These common features are very helpful in SMB network managing and ensuring data quality.

Management and Functionality Services

For all the switches mentioned above, some of them are fully managed switches while some are smart managed switches. But all of them are not limited to web interface management. They also support Command Line Interface (CLI), Telnet (multi-session support), SSH and SNMP (simple network management protocol). The most functions that a SMB might need are all equipped, such as VLAN, port mirroring, LACP (link aggregation control protocol) and RMON (remote network control).

QoS and Security Features

The QoS (Quality of Service) features include ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) inspection, ACLs (Access Control Lists), DSCP remark, etc. These features can contribute a lot in securing the SMB network, for example, with the help of ARP inspection and ACLs, the switch can block fake ARP entries outside the system, so that data frames will not be easily sniffed or modified. Broadcast Storm Control is also supported in order to avoid traffic disorder caused by malicious attack from intruders.

How to Connect These 10G SFP+ Switches?

Although these 10G SFP+ switches chosen for SMB hyper-converged appliance expansion are relatively low-priced, but the OEM 10G SFP+ fiber transceivers can overburden a SMB if bought in large quantity. Four OEM 10G SFP+ transceivers can cost as much as a 10G SFP+ switch we have found above. Fortunately, there is way to release the SMBs from expensive OEM optics. That is cost-effective 10G SFP+ compatible modules. So the total cost for the HCA expansion will not exceed $3k either. In addition, most OEM switches support third party transceiver modules and DAC cables from third party transceiver vendors.

Summary

In sum, for SMB hyper-converged appliance expansion, the 10G SFP+ switches used to connect the core switch and the cluster need not to be high port count, but should be equipped with enough management functions for SMB applications.

 

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How to Buy Right 48 Port 10GBASE-T Switch?

For recent years, the advent of 10Gbase-t copper solutions has seen growing adoption. Compared to fiber optics, copper has made great advances in latency and power consumption. 10Gbase-t is thus becoming more popular in network switches and servers. If you have not got any 10G switches, you should get 10Gbase-t switches, such as 12 port, 24 port, or 48 port 10gbase-t switches which are cost-effective 10g sfp+ copper switches for data centers. This post mainly talks about 48 port 10gbase-t switch.

Why You Need 48 Port 10gbase-t Switch?

Like other BASE-T technologies, 10gbase-t uses the standard RJ45 Ethernet jack. 10gbase-t is backward compatible, auto-negotiating between higher and lower speeds, thereby not forcing an all-at-once network equipment upgrade. It means that the 10G copper connections can also work with 1 Gigabit Ethernet devices without requiring any expensive hardware replacements. The ability to autonegotiate between 1 and 10 gigabit speeds allows 10gbase-t server upgrades to occur on an evolutionary, as-needed basis. Cat5/Cat5e are supported for 10 Gigabit speeds up to 100 meters.

48 port 10gbase-t switch

48 port 10gbase-t switches help to resolve the congestion issue between network edge and core, which is caused by the broader adoption of Gigabit-to-the-desktop. The utilizing of 48 port 10gbase-t switch provides more design flexibility and it can be used at the center of a small business network or as an aggregation/access switch in a larger organization. 48 port 10gbase-t switch is ideal for expanding network capacity, removing performance bottlenecks and support of premise expansion needs. In simply put, deploying 48 port 10gbase-t switch can be less expensive to install and maintain while meeting the requirements of most short-distance connections within a data center.

What to Consider When Buying 48 Port 10gbase-t Switch?

Once there is a need for 48 port 10gbase-t switch, you shall buy the right switch from multiple vendors on the market? Which should you buy? What to consider when buying 48 port 10gbase-t switch? Here would give some guidelines by providing a comparison among three 10gbase-t switches 48 port from different vendors—Cisco (Cisco SG550XG-48T), NETGEAR (NETGEAR XS748T-100NES) and FS (FS S5850-48T4Q).

Model Cisco SG550XG-48T NETGEAR XS748T-100NES FS S5850-48T4Q
Ports 48×10 Gigabit Ethernet 10GBase-T copper port; 2x 10 Gigabit Ethernet SFP+ (combo with 2 copper ports); 1x Gigabit Ethernet management port 44×10 Gigabit Ethernet 10GBase-T copper port; 4×10 Gigabit Ethernet SFP+ 48x 10 Gigabit Ethernet 10GBase-T copper port; 4×40 Gigabit Ethernet QSFP+; Management and Console Ports (RJ45)
Switching capacity 960 Gbps 960 Gbps 1.28Tbps
Forwarding performance 714.24 Mpps 714.2 Mpps 952.32Mpps
Packet Buffer 4 MB 3MB 9MB

From the table, we can see that they have different features and capabilities. In comparison, the third one FS 10gbase-t switch 48 port has the best switching performance. This 48 port 10gbase-t switch is built with 10 Gigabit Ethernet connectivity, giving you the speed you need to share information quickly. Moreover, it supports low-latency, line-rate 10g copper base-t technology with backward compatibility to Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet. The 48 port 10gbase-t switch is also able to cost-effectively migrate current network to 10G capacity by utilizing the existing cat6 RJ45 short connections up to 30 meters and cat6a/cat7 connections up to 100 meters. In short, the 10gbase-t switch 48 port can deliver substantial productivity gains today and help future-proof your network for the demanding applications of tomorrow. Furthermore, it’s simple to manage and can get the fast data speeds, nonstop availability, and advanced security you need in LAN. Generally speaking, when buying such high-performance 48 port 10gbase-t switch, you should pay attention to the following aspects.

48 port 10gbase-t switch

Port Density & Speed

When buying a 48 port 10gbase-t switch, you should also pay attention to other speed of ports besides the 48x 10 Gigabit Ethernet 10gbase-t copper port. Typically, the 48 port 10gbase-t switches also come with 10 Gigabit Ethernet SFP+ ports or 40 Gigabit Ethernet QSFP+ ports. With different vendors, the port numbers vary. There are 48x10gbase-t + 4x40g qsfp+, and 48x10gbase-t + 6x40g qsfp+ in the market, or network switches with 48x10gbase-t + 2x10g sfp+ are also available. Normally, with too few ports and not enough capacity will prove ineffective and one that is too large can be a waste of money. It is prudent to have an extra port or two available for future demand. The 48 port 10gbase-t switch with four qsfp+ ports can meet next generation Metro, Data Center and Enterprise network requirements.

Power and Latency

Advancements have allowed switch vendors to significantly lower power consumption on 10gbase-t switch ports. While early versions of 10gbase-t switches required up to 12 Watts per port, switch vendors now offer a range of 1.5 to 4 W per port depending on distance. The FS 48 port 10gbase-t switch has rather low power consumption and low latency and remains relatively flat across all packet sizes.

Cost per Port

As power consumption has dropped, 10gbase-t switch prices have also dropped with per-port prices at less than $350. Take FS 48 port 10gbase-t switch as an example, its price is $4599 with 48x10gbase-t ports and 4×40 gigabit qsfp+ ports. So the cost per port would definitely be less than $350.

Conclusion

The 48 port 10gbase-t switch presents the right solution for extending beyond simple reliability to higher speed and performance while delivering unprecedented non-blocking 10 gigabit bandwidth at an affordable cost. When buying the 10gbase-t switch 48 port, make a network plan first and take into consideration what has mentioned above. If you are not aware of which 48 port 10gbase-t switch to buy, FS would be a good place to consult, who can help to make network planning by your requirements and recommend the suitable network switches.

How to Select Waterproof Fiber Optic Patch Cable

 

Fiber optic waterproof cables are widely used in outdoor applications to connect the major fiber optic lines or receivers or splice enclosures. According to different requirements, both fiber optic patch cords and fiber optic pigtails are available. Water proof fiber cable usually adds a water blocking material between the outer jacket and the inner fiber (or inner jacket) to protect the fiber surface from unwanted damage, such as an armored cable or loose-tube gel-filled cable, or water-tolerable tight-buffered cable. Since there are different types of structure for waterproof cables, is there an easy way to determine which waterproof fiber optic patch cable to choose? In order to help select a right waterproof fiber optic cable quickly, this post will introduce the basic knowledge of waterproof ratings and the features of our waterproof fiber optic cable.

How Is a Waterproof Cable Rated?

Like choosing any other fiber optic patch cables, the connector type, fiber count, fiber type (single-mode or multimode), polish type, cable length and cable jacket are factors that should be considered as well. When buying waterproof fiber optic patch cords, the IP (International Protection or Ingress Protection) rating is an important parameter. Knowing the IP code can help you find your wanted waterproof cable.

IP rating system is a classification showing the degrees of protection from solid objects and liquids. IP rating codes do not include hyphens or spaces, and consist of the letters IP followed by one or two figures. The first number refers to the degree of protection against the entry of foreign solid objects, such as dust. These protection levels range from 0 to 6. The second number of the IP code refers to the degrees of protection against moisture/liquids, which are raging from 0 to 8. The first and second number of the IP code can be replaced by the letter “X” when the protection capacity against solid objects (the first number) or moisture (the second number) has not been tested, for example, IPX7 and IP6X.

The following two tables explain the two types of protection levels in details.

Table 1: Protection levels against solid objects.

IP Code Protection Object Size
0 No protection. N/A
1 Protection from contact with any large surface of the body, such as the back of a hand, but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part, such as a finger. Less than 50mm.
2 Protection from fingers or similar objects. Less than 12.5mm.
3 Protection from tools, thick wires or similar objects. Less than 2.5mm.
4 Protection from most wires, screws or similar objects. Less than 1mm.
5 Partial protection from contact with harmful dust. N/A
6 Partial protection from contact with harmful dust. N/A

Table 2: Protection levels against moisture.

IP Code Protection Test Duration Usage
0 No protection. N/A N/A
1 Protection against vertically dripping water. 10 mins Light rain.
2 Protection against vertically dripping water when device is tilted at an angle up to 15 degrees. 10 mins Light rain.
3 Protection against direct sprays of water when device is tilted at an angle up to 60 degrees. 5 mins Rain and spraying.
4 Protection from sprays and splashing of water in all directions. 5 mins Rain, spraying and splashing.
5 Protection from low-pressure water projected from a nozzle with a 6.3mm diameter opening in any direction. 3 mins from a distance of 3 meters Rain, splashing and direct contact with most kitchen/bathroom faucets.
6 Protection from water projected in powerful jets from a nozzle with a 12.5mm diameter opening in any direction. 3 mins from a distance of 3 meters Rain, splashing, direct contact with kitchen/bathroom faucets, outdoor use in rough sea conditions.
7 Protected from immersion in water with a depth of up to 1 meter (or 3.3 feet) for up to 30 mins. 30 mins Rain, splashing and accidental submersion.
8 Protected from immersion in water with a depth of more than 1 meter (manufacturer must specify exact depth). Varies Rain, splashing and accidental submersion.
Features of Waterproof Fiber Optic Patch Cable

Take FS.COM as exmaple, it provides IP67 waterproof fiber optic patch cable, including simplex, duplex, 12 fibers, 24 fibers, and various kinds of connect interfaces are optional, such as LC-LC fiber patch cord, SC-SC fiber patch cord, MPO-MPO fiber patch cord, etc. Other degrees of waterproof fiber optic patch cords can also be customized. Its waterproof fiber patch cables are designed with strong PU jacket and armored structure, which can resist high temperature and fit for harsh environment. Its IP67 waterproof fiber patch cords are featured with high temperature stability and low insertion loss. It is also very convenient to install these waterproof, dust-proof and corrosion-resistant patch cords. The plug and socket design can be used to extend the cable length. They are very suitable for FTTH (fiber to the home) and LAN (local area network) applications.

Conclusion

The IP code for waterproof devices is not that difficult to understand and you can get some basic information about the protection degree of a device after you know the meaning of each number. You can use it as a reference in choosing a waterproof cable, but you should also consider other factors according to your specific applications.

 

The Role of Parallel Fiber in 40GbE and Beyond

In order to meet the overwhelming trend of growing bandwidth, different standards for single-mode and multimode fibers are published, and parallel fiber connector (MTP/MPO) is designed to solve the problem of increasing fiber count. Though the fiber types are changing, the use of the parallel connector seems not to be outdated, not only for present 40G and 100G applications, but also for future 200G and 400G. This post will discuss the issue on a new fiber type and the role of parallel fiber in 40GbE and beyond networks.

Overview on Multimode and Single-mode Fibers

 

Since the establishment of multimode fiber in the early 1980s, there has been OM1 and OM2, and laser optimized OM3 and OM4 fibers for 10GbE, 40GbE and 100GbE. OM5, the officially designated wideband multimode fiber (WBMMF), is a new fiber medium specified in ANSI/TIA-492AAAE. The channel capacity of multimode fiber has multiplied by using parallel transmission over several fiber strands. In terms of single-mode fiber, there are only OS1 and OS2; and it has been serving for optical communications without much change for a long time. Compared with the constant updates of multimode fiber and considering other factors, some enterprise customers prefer to use single-mode fiber more over the past years and for the foreseeable future. With the coming out of the new OM5 fiber, it seems that multimode fiber might last for a longer time in the future 200G and 400G applications.

The Issue on the Upcoming Fiber Type

The new fiber medium OM5 is presented as the first laser-optimized MMF that specifies a wider range of wavelengths between 840 and 953 nm to support wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) technology (at least four wavelengths). It is also specified to support legacy applications and emerging short wavelength division multiplexing (SWDM) applications. Although OM5 has been anticipated to be “performance compliant and superior to OM4” based on the following parameters, there are still some arguments on the statement that OM5 is a better solution for data centers.

OM4 & OM5 comparison

Figure 1: OM4 and OM5 comparison.

OM5 supporters talk about the problems of present multimode fibers in long-term development. The opinion holds that the future 400GBASE-SR16 which will reuse 100GBASE-SR4 technology specified in IEEE 802.3bs Standard draft, calls for a new 32 fibers 2-row MTP/MPO connector instead of a 12 fibers MTP/MPO connector. It will be hard for current structured cabling that uses MTP-12 to move to MTP-16 requirements.

12f MTP connector (left) and 32f MTP connector (right).

Figure 2: 12f MTP connector (left) and 32f MTP connector (right).

However, the OM5 fiber solution, which can support 4 WDM wavelengths, will enable 4 fiber count reduction in running 40G, 100G and 200G using duplex LC connections. Combined with parallel technology, 400G can also be effectively transmitted over OM5 fibers using only 4 or 8 fibers.

10G, 100G, 200G, and 400G WDM transmission over OM5 fiber

Figure 3: 40G, 100G, 200G, and 400G WDM transmission over OM5 fiber.

On the other side, some people don’t support the idea that OM5 is a good solution for future 400G network. They argue that OM5 isn’t that optimized than current MMF types. The first reason is that for all the current and future multimode IEEE applications including 40GBASE-SR4, 100GBASE-SR4, 200GBASE-SR4, and 400GBASE-SR16, the maximum allowable reach is the same for OM5 as OM4 cabling.

MMF-Standard-Specifications-1

Figure 4: Multimode fiber standard specifications.

MMF-Standard-Specifications-continued

Figure 4 continued.

The second reason is that, even by using SWDM technology, the difference on the reaches for OM4 and OM5 in 40G and 100G is minimal. For 40G-SWDM4, OM4 could support a 400-meter reach and OM5 a 500-meter reach. For 100G-SWDM4, OM4 could support 100 meters and OM5 is only 50 meters more than OM4.

And thirdly, the PAM4 technology can increase the bandwidth of each fiber from 25G to 50-56G, which means we can stick to current 12-fiber and 24-fiber MTP/MPO connectors as cost-effective solutions in the 40G, 100G and beyond applications.

Conclusion

The options for future higher speed transmission are still in discussion, but there is no doubt that no matter we choose to use new OM5 fiber or continue to use single-mode fiber and OM3/OM4 fiber, the “parallel fibers remain essential to support break-out functionality” as stated in WBMMF standardization. It is the fact that parallel fiber solution enables higher density ports via breakout cabling and reduces cost per single-lane channel.

Source: https://goo.gl/WDNwC1

CMR, CMP and LSZH MTP/MPO Cable

Multifiber MTP/MPO cable is a preferable choice for high-density telecom and datacom cabling. For the outer jacket of MTP/MPO cable, there are many terms to describe it, such as CM, LSZH, CMP, CMR, PVC, etc. FS.COM carries several of these technologies. Do you know the differences between them? And what are the characteristics of each type? Most importantly, which one do you need for the task? This post will introduce some major jacket types for MTP/MPO cables and the other acronyms for communication cable ratings.

MTP cabling

Figure 1: MTP/MPO cabling.

CMP

CMP (plenum-rated) MTP/MPO cable complies the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) 60332-1 flammability standard. CMP MTP/MPO cable is designed to be used in plenum spaces, where air circulation for heating and air conditioning systems can be facilitated, by providing pathways for either heated/conditioned or return airflows. Typical plenum spaces are between the structural ceiling and the drop ceiling or under a raised floor. CMP rated communication cable is suitable for telephone and computer network exactly for this matter. It is designed to restrict flame propagation no more than five feet, and to limit the amount of smoke emitted during fire. Additionally, CMP MTP/MPO cable is more fire-retardant than LSZH, and as a result, sites are better protected. As an excellent performer cable, it is usually more costly than other cable types.

It has to be noted that some CMP cable made of fluorinated ethylene polymer (FEP) still has shortcomings of potential toxicity. Thus better CMP cable with a non-halogen plenum compound is further produced. For safety reason, no high-voltage equipment is allowed in plenum space because presence of fresh air can greatly increase danger of rapid flame spreading if the equipment catch on fire.

LSZH

The LSZH (low smoke zero halogen, also refers to LSOH or LS0H or LSFH or OHLS) has no exact IEC code equivalent. The LSZH cable is based on the compliance of IEC 60754 and IEC 61034. LSZH MTP/MPO cable is better than other cables in been safer to people during a fire. It has no halogens in its composition and thus does not produce a dangerous gas/acid combination when exposed to flame. LSZH cable reduces the amount of toxic and corrosive gas emitted during inflammation. LSZH MTP/MPO cables are suitable to be used in places that is poorly aired such as aircraft, rail cars or ships, to provide better protection to people and equipment. LSZH MTP/MPO cable is more widely applied type than other materials, both for its secure properties and lower cost than CMP.

Other Types

The cable jackets will be discussed in the following part are not as frequently used for MTP/MPO cable as CMP and LSZH.

CMR (riser-rated) complies IEC 60332-3 standards. CMR cable is constructed to prevent fires from spreading floor to floor in vertical installations. It can be used when cables need to be run between floors through risers or vertical shafts. PVC is most often associated with riser-rated cable, but nor all PVC cable is necessarily riser-rated; FEP is most often associated with CMP. Since the fire requirements for CMR cable is not that strict, CMP cable can always replace CMR cable, but not reversibly.

CM (in-wall rated) cable is a general purpose type, which is used in cases where the fire code does not place any restrictions on cable type. Some examples are home or office environments for CPU to monitor connections.

The figure below generally illustrates the applicable environments for CMP, CMR and CM rated cables.

CMP, CMR, CM cable application

Figure 2: CMP, CMR, CM cable application.

Conclusion

Knowing the relevant details of cable ratings of MTP/MPO will certainly help in selecting the best one for your applications, which is as important as other factors. FS.COM provides high quality plenum and LSZH MTP/MPO trunk cables and MTP breakout cables at affordable prices.

Source: https://goo.gl/1JUyBo

Connectivity Solutions for Parallel to Duplex Optics

Since we have discussed connectivity solutions for two duplex optics or two parallel optics in the last post (see previous post: Connectivity Solutions for Duplex and Parallel Optics), the connectivity solutions for parallel to duplex optics will be discussed in this article, including 8-fiber to 2-fiber, and 20-fiber to 2-fiber.

Parallel to Duplex Direct Connectivity

When directly connecting one 8-fiber transceiver to four duplex transceivers, an 8-fiber MTP to duplex LC harness cable is needed. The harness will have four LC duplex connectors and the fibers will be paired in a specific way, assuring the proper polarity is maintained. This solution is suggested only for short distance within a given row or in the same rack/cabinet.

8-fiber to 2-fiber direct connectivity

Figure 1: 8-fiber to 2-fiber direct connectivity

Parallel to Duplex Interconnect

This is an 8-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect. The solution in figure 2 allows for patching on both ends of the fiber optic link. The devices used in this link are recorded in the table below figure 2.

8-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Figure 2: 8-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Item Description
1 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned to pinned)
2 96 fibers MTP adapter panel (8 ports)
3 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
4 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
5 LC to LC duplex patch cable (SMF/MMF)

Figure 3 is also an interconnect for 8-fiber parallel QSFP+ to 2-fiber SFP+. This solution is an easy way for migration from 2-fiber to 8-fiber, but it has disadvantage that the flexibility of the SFP+ end is lacked because the SFP+ ports have to be located on the same chassis.

8-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Figure 3: 8-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Item Description
1 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned to pinned)
2 96 fibers MTP adapter panel (8 ports)
3 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
4 8 fibers MTP (pinned) to duplex 4 x LC harness cable

Figure 4 shows how to take a 20-fiber CFP and break it out to ten 2-fiber SFP+ transceivers. The breakout modules divide the twenty fibers into three groups, and ten LC duplex cables are used to accomplish the connectivity to SFP+ modules.

20-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Figure 4: 20-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect

Item Description
1 1×3 MTP breakout harness cable(24-fiber MTP to three 8-fiber MTP) (not pinned)
2 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
3 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)
Parallel to Duplex Cross-Connect

There are two cross-connect solutions for 8-fiber parallel to 2-fiber duplex. The main difference for figure 5 and 6 is on the QSFP+ side. The second cross-connect is better for a greater distance between distribution areas where the trunk cables need to be protected from damage in a tray.

8-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect (1)

Figure 5: 8-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect (1)

Item Description
1 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
2 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
3 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)

8-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect (2)

Figure 6: 8-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect (2)

Item Description
1 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned to pinned)
2 96 fibers MTP adapter panel (8 ports)
3 8 fiber MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
4 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
5 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)
Conclusion

These solutions are simple explanations to duplex and parallel optical links. It seems that the difference between each solution is not that significant in plain drawing, but actually the requirements for components are essential to an efficient fiber optic network infrastructure in different situations. Whether it is a narrow-space data center or a long-haul distribution network that will mostly determine the cabling structure and the products used.

Source: https://goo.gl/zkCyZw

Connectivity Solutions for Duplex and Parallel Optical Links

In optical communication, duplex and parallel optical links are two of the most commonly deployed cabling structures. This post will discuss some specific connectivity solutions using 2-fiber duplex and 8-fiber/20-fiber parallel fiber optic modules.

Duplex and Parallel Optical Links

A duplex link is accomplished by using two fibers. The most commonly used connector is the duplex LC. The TIA standard defines two types of duplex fiber patch cables terminated with duplex LC connector to complete an end-to-end fiber duplex connection: A-to-A patch cable (a cross version) and A-to-B patch cable (a straight version). In this article the LC to LC duplex cables we use are all A-to-B patch cables. It means the optical signal will be transmitted on B connector and received on A connector.

two types of duplex-patch-cable

Figure 1: two types of fiber patch cables

A parallel link is accomplished by combining two or more channels. Parallel optical links can be achieved by using eight fibers (4 fibers for Tx and 4 fibers for Rx), twenty fibers (10 fibers for Tx and 10 fibers for Rx) or twenty-four fibers (12 fibers for Tx and 12 fibers for Rx). To accomplish an 8-fiber optical link, the standard cabling is a 12-fiber trunk with an MTP connector (12-fiber connector). It follows the Type B polarity scheme. The connector type and the alignment of the fibers is shown in figure 2.

8-fiber parllel system

Figure 2: parallel fiber (8-fiber) optic transmission

To accomplish a 20-fiber parallel optical link, a parallel 24-fiber MTP connector is used. Its fiber alignment and connector type is shown in figure 3.

20-fiber parallel system

Figure 3: parallel fiber (20-fiber) optic transmission
Duplex Fiber Optic Transmission Links (2-fiber to 2-fiber)

We will discuss the items required to connect two duplex transceivers in this part. These 2-fiber duplex protocols include but not limited to: 10GBASE-SR, 10GBASE-LR, 10GBASE-ER, 40GBASE-BiDi, 40GBASE-LR4, 40GBASE-LRL4, 40GBASE-UNIV, 40GBASE-FR, 100GBASE-LR4, 100GBASE-ER4, 100GBASE-CWDM4, 100GBASE-BiDi, 1GFC, 2GFC, 4GFC, 8GFC, 16GFC, 32GFC.

Duplex Direct Connectivity

When directly connecting two duplex SFP+ transceivers, an A-to-B type patch cable is required. This type of direct connectivity is suggested only to be used within a given row of racks/cabinets. Figure 4 shows two SFP+s connected by one LC to LC duplex patch cable.

2-fiber to 2-fiber direct connectivity

Figure 4: 2-fiber to 2-fiber direct connectivity

Duplex Interconnect

The following figure is an interconnect for two duplex transceivers. An 8-fiber MTP trunk cable is deployed with 8-fiber MTP-LC breakout modules connected to the end of the trunk. It should be noted that the polarity has to be maintained during the transmission. And pinned connectors should be deployed with unpinned devices. Structured cabling allows for easier moves, adds, and changes (MACs). Figure 5 illustrates this solution.

2-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect (1)

Figure 5: 2-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect (1)

Item Description
1 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)
2 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
3 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)

Figure 6 is also an interconnect solution for SFP+ transceivers, but on the right side an 8-fiber MTP to 4 x LC harness cable and an MTP adapter panel are used instead. This solution works best when connectivity is required for high port count switch.

2-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect (2)

Figure 6: 2-fiber to 2-fiber interconnect (2)

Item Description
1 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)
2 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
3 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
4 96 fibers MTP adapter panel (8 port)
5 8 fibers MTP (not pinned) to duplex 4 x LC harness cable
Duplex Cross-Connect

This solution is a duplex cross-connect. It will allow all patching to be made at the main distribution area (MDA) with maximum flexibility for port-to-port connection. Figure 7 illustrates the cross-connect solution for duplex connectivity.

2-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect

Figure 7: 2-fiber to 2-fiber cross-connect

Item Description
1 LC to LC duplex cable (SMF/MMF)
2 MTP-8 to duplex LC breakout module (pinned)
3 8 fibers MTP trunk cable (not pinned)
Parallel Fiber Optic Transmission Links

We will discuss items required to connect two parallel (8-fiber or 20-fiber) transceivers in this part. These protocols include but not limited to: 40GBASE-SR4, 40GBASE-xSR4/cSR4/eSR4, 40GBASE-PLR4, 40GBASE-PSM4, 100GBASE-SR4, 100GBASE-eSR4, 100GBASE-PSM4, 100GBASE-SR10.

Parallel Direct Connectivity (8-fiber or 20-fiber)

When directly connecting two QSFP+ or QSFP 28 transceivers, an 8-fiber MTP trunk cable is needed. For directly connecting two CFP transceivers, a 24-fiber MTP trunk cable is needed.

8-fiber to 8-fiber direct connectivity

Figure 8: 8-fiber to 8-fiber direct connectivity
Parallel Interconnect (8/20-fiber)

Figure 9 shows an interconnect solution for two CFP modules (20-fiber). To break-out the CFPs to transmit the signal across an 8-fiber infrastructure, a 1 x 3 breakout harness (24-fiber MTP to three 8-fiber MTP) is required. To achieve an interconnect for two 8-fiber optics, we can replace the breakout harness by an 8-fiber MTP (pinned) trunk and the 24-fiber MTP trunk by an MTP (not pinned) trunk.

20-fiber to 20-fiber interconnect

Figure 9: 20-fiber to 20-fiber interconnect

Item Description
1 1×3 MTP breakout harness cable (24-fiber MTP to three 8-fiber MTP) (pinned)
2 96 fibers MTP adapter panel (8 ports)
3 24 fibers MTP trunk cable, three 8-fiber legs (not pinned)
Conclusion

This post gives brief introduction to the meaning of duplex and parallel optical link and presents some connectivity solutions for two duplex optics or two parallel optics. The corresponding items used in each solution are listed too. The transmission distance and working environment should be taken into account when applying each cabling solution. The parallel to duplex connectivity solutions will be discussed in the next post.

Originally posted on: http://www.fiber-optical-networking.com/connectivity-solutions-duplex-parallel-optical-links.html