Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Internet

Ethernet at 10 Gbps 462

Posted by michael
from the no-waiting dept.
An anonymous reader writes "This article talks about 10 Gigabit Ethernet and asks, 'But just how much data can a person consume?' Currently at work, we're working on a major project to re-architect our core application platform so that the different systems can be de-coupled and hosted separately. The legacy design implicitly relies on systems being in the same LAN due to bandwidth-expensive operations (e.g., database replication). Having this much bandwidth would change the way we design. What would you do with this much bandwidth?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Ethernet at 10 Gbps

Comments Filter:
  • by The Clockwork Troll (655321) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:06AM (#9792686) Journal
    When your network pushes over 1 gigabyte/sec, diskless workstations become a much more interesting possibility.

    Typical desktops of the past few years see roughly ~25 megabyte/sec sustained disk throughput (more for SCSI and more recent ATA models). A switched 1 gigabyte/sec network could easily and transparently support 25 remote drives virtually indistinguishable from local storage.

  • by RoundTop-VJAS (580788) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:10AM (#9792706)
    I worked for a medical imaging company and they would use it.

    they are using gigabit already and you can see slowdown...simply put, a couple hundred 100MB+ x-rays to a single box.... multiply that by however many boxes the hospital has..and 10 gigabit is nice.

    The problem hits in not having enough RAM..and with a 4GB limitation on workstation OS's for the most part this amount of bandwidth could get funky.
  • by cynical kane (730682) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:20AM (#9792779)
    PCI is 33Mhz, not 33 MB/sec. 33 X 32-bit-bus = 133 MB/sec. PCI-X goes up to 133 Mhz and 64-bit, so that's 800 MB/sec.
  • Way overkill (Score:5, Informative)

    by JRHelgeson (576325) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:33AM (#9792843) Homepage Journal
    As a CCIE, I have been designing networks for years. I have analyzed traffic to/from desktops and watched traffic to the average desktop never even get above 27mbps. This is due to the average file size of the transfer which is rarely above 10 megabytes. At 10 megs, it only takes a few seconds to get it transfered and it only has a few seconds to get up to speed, by the time it gets all revved up, the file transfer is complete.

    High-end workstations such as CAD with gigabit connections, working with 500 mb files, or multi-gigabit video files will occasionally reach 500 to 600 mbps, and even then only for a couple of seconds. At these speeds, power users can use that network connection as if it were a local drive, because at those speeds you are matching the speed at which you're reading/writing data to your local hard drive.

    The only time I've ever seen near gigabit traffic at a steady pace was at network servers, where traffic can reach a steady 600mbps on a single gig link - which is maxing out the speed at which the server drive can read/write data to its hard drive. Think of it this way, a 1 gigaBIT link can transfer a 1 gigaBYTE file in about 10 seconds, that's FAST! Conversely, it takes nearly 20-30 seconds just to write that large a file to the hard drive.

    Now, on a Cisco 6500 core switch, or a Cisco GSR 12000 where traffic is aggregated, these are the only places where I've actually seen multi-gigabit traffic rates, and that was across the switch fabric - not all directed to a single interface.

    The 12000 GSR already has a 10gb interface, it is a single line card that takes up a full slot. It sells for about $60,000 and is used to move data from the switch fabric of one GSR to another GSR, which means you need to put in 2 of them at a mere $120,000 to get the two connected.

    Moving to optical links, you can get up to 36Gbps using Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing on multimode fiber. This uses several colors of laser light to transmit multiple 'channels' across a single fiber link.

    Even at these tremendous speeds, they are only used at traffic aggregation points, again because any network device, even a turbocharged SAN couldn't handle reading/writing at those speeds for anything longer than a quick burst.

    I say this: If you think that 10gig/sec is your answer, you're looking at the wrong problem. You can get the performance you need at gigabit rates.

    I'm not saying that we'll never need 10gigabit to the desktop, just not until we solve the hard drive bottleneck. Solid state storage could solve the problem, but we'd need to have solid state drives that store 100gb of data in order to match the throughput of the network.
  • The Copenhagen Metro (Score:3, Informative)

    by empaler (130732) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:50AM (#9792920) Journal
    Had some pretty slick security cams installed in them from the beginning (~3-4 years ago) - but they couldn't use them. Why? Not enough bandwidth to send the images uncompressed. Which was what they had set them up to do. Solution? Turn off cameras. Wait a few years for more funding.
  • Re:What would I do? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Gilk180 (513755) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:50AM (#9792921)
    Well, I get 40, but whatever.

    Then there is the other problem that many people seem to be ignoring that ethernet is by design limited to a pretty short distance (I'm too laxy to pull out the networking book). And the fact that because you might have a 10Gbps connection to one other computer, doesn't mean you are gonna have a 10 Gbps connection to anyone else. I know I have 100Mbps within my apartment, but then there is that darn internet connection that tops out at ~2Mbps.

    In your world, 'hdtv' might be 1280x1024, but in the world at least a few of us live in, HDTV (notice the caps) isn't, it's 960x540(assuming square pixels) and I imagine less than 24 bit color (All this analog stuff!). I don't know, but I would also guess that it's the same frame rate as regular old TV (~30 fps).

    906 x 540 x 16 x 30 = 235 Mb
    add sound and round up give 250 Mb and forty channels, with sound. Still not stupendous, but even with some fast, lossless compression that would probably double to 80.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:50AM (#9792922)
    "Seriously gentleman, move beyond the teenage years"
    I think it's you who is the naive child.

    Porn continues to be one of the leading drivers of technology (war being the other one) having "made" the VCR, VideoCD, color-printing, Video Streaming, and many other industries.

    Porn also continues to be a serious business, with the New York Times (may 18 cover story) claiming Pornography has $10 - $14 billion in annual sales - bigger than any major sports league.

    The porn industry employes 12,000 people in California alone, contributing $36 million in taxes to the state. Comcast makes $50 million per year on cable programming. DirecTV is estimated (by CBS) to make $500 million/year.

    Recent estimates of Internet porn are that it's about a 1 billion dollar industry.

    CBS reports that [cbsnews.com] "Consumer demand is so strong that it has seduced some of America's biggest brand names, and companies like General Motors, Marriott and Time Warner are now making millions selling erotica to America. Correspondent Steve Kroft reports.".

    The CBS article claims that Hilton, Marriot, Hyatt, Sheraton and Holiday Inn all offer pay-per-view porn and such programming is purchased by 50 percent(!!!) of guests accounting for 70% of in-room-profits.

    " Sorry, it isn't funny, intelligent, and I think most readers would say that you are simply embarassing yourself"
    We're not laughing it it -- we're respecting it as an important technology driver, and serious business that is very important to both broadband communication (this article) and other technologies including digital video, alternative payment mechanisms (phone-sex is the biggest driver for phone-calling-cards), etc.

    Perhaps one day when you reach puberty you'll understand too.

  • by Lord Prox (521892) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @12:50AM (#9792923) Homepage
    Ya know, so far everyone seems to think of this as a long distance pipe. It's not, it ethernet. RTFA useful distance is in meters *NOT* kilometers. This is an intraoffice connection not a WAN pipe.

  • by mindstrm (20013) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:11AM (#9792997)
    Answer: because laypeople insist on talking in imprecise terms like kilobytes and whatnot. Even the byte, historically, could be of varied size depending on the architecture.

    When talking about bandwidth, always use bits, and always use k=1000.

    Further, how much useful data transfer you get out of the system is not an accurate number.. it fluctuates based on a number of factors, including the network itself, quality of equipment, protocol stack and version, stack settings, local hardware speeds, etc.

    However, what we DO know is that the medium transfers *exactly* 10 billion bits per second, no more, no less.

    Transmission speeds are measured atthe base rate they transmit data at, without taking into account the protocol in use generally. It has to be this way, because everything else varies upon use. 11Mbps wifi in no way lets you transmit 11mbps of useful data, or anywhere near that, between two hosts.. but the data rate on air is precisely 11Mbps.

    A fully utilized 100Mbps ethernet hub will have exactly 100 million bits per second going through it.. yet it is impossible for a single host to transmit at 100mbps continuously.. there are mandatory pauses in between frames, and stuff like that.

    Further to that.. to add any kind of meaning whatsoever to download limits, if it's a service you pay for, you need to inquire to precisely how such things are calculated.

  • by leapis (89780) * on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:15AM (#9793013)
    This much bandwidth isn't going to help you do any of these things. I upgraded my network to gigabit ethernet about a year ago (from 100 mbit), and much to my surprise, the speed increase was only about 3 times when copying files from one machine to another. I did a little math, and found the answer. Your average ATA hard drive, even at max bus speed, only delivers 0.8 Gbps. And in the real world, you are lucky to get half that from a single drive. In my own test transfers from RAID1 and RAID5 arrays, my transfer rates never once exceeded 0.70 Gbps. Until there is a fundamental increase in the amount of data you can get off a spinning disc, its not likely that a home user is going to saturate a 1 Gbps line, much less a 10 Gbps line.
  • by dewpac (31645) <matt@sappf a m i l y . org> on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:24AM (#9793040)
    Actually it's 1064MB/sec...

    Double the bus width from 32 to 64 bits and you double from 133MB/sec to 266MB/sec

    Now 4x the Mhz from 33 to 133.. 266 * 4 = 1064MB/sec.
  • by kasperd (592156) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:26AM (#9793049) Homepage Journal
    I have to count picoseconds for the kind of stuff I do

    Unless you are working with individual gates inside a chip, I doubt picoseconds really matters. On ethernet we are certainly not talking picoseconds. We are still limited by the speed of light, so it would take the signal 100 picoseconds just to get through the RJ45 connector. With a 1.5m ethernet cable there will be at least 10 nanoseconds of roundtrip time, because that is the time it takes light to travel 3m.
  • Re:Argh! No more! (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:44AM (#9793118)
    People are interested in the business and technology-driving aspects of porn.

    Porn continues to be one of the leading drivers of technology (war being the other one) having "made" the VCR, VideoCD, color-printing, Video Streaming, and many other industries.

    Porn also continues to be a serious business, with the New York Times (may 18 cover story) claiming Pornography has $10 - $14 billion in annual sales - bigger than any major sports league.

    The porn industry employes 12,000 people in California alone, contributing $36 million in taxes to the state. Comcast makes $50 million per year on adult cable programming. DirecTV is estimated (by CBS) to make $500 million/year on adult content.

    Recent estimates of Internet porn are that it's about a 1 billion dollar industry. CBS reports that [cbsnews.com] "Consumer demand is so strong that it has seduced some of America's biggest brand names, and companies like General Motors, Marriott and Time Warner are now making millions selling erotica to America. Correspondent Steve Kroft reports.".

    The CBS article claims that Hilton, Marriot, Hyatt, Sheraton and Holiday Inn all offer pay-per-view porn and such programming is purchased by 50 percent(!!!) of guests accounting for 70% of in-room-profits.

    Bottom line is merely that we respect porn as an important technology driver, and serious business that is very important to both broadband communication (this article) and other technologies including digital video, alternative payment mechanisms (phone-sex is the biggest driver for phone-calling-cards), etc.

    Perhaps one day when you reach puberty you'll understand too.

  • Re:Way overkill (Score:2, Informative)

    by Acidangl (86850) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:48AM (#9793129)
    WS-X6704-10GE Cat6500 4-port 10 Gigabit Ethernet Module (req. XENPAKs) $20,000

  • Re:What would I do? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:56AM (#9793148)
    i'm pulling most of these numbers out of my ass

    As someone who actually does know what you're talking about, that's certainly apparent. About the only number you got even close to right was the 1280 horizontal resolution.
    The spec for 1980i HDTV is 19.25 Mbps. Far, far lower than the 1887 Mbps you calculated.

  • Re:What would I do? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, 2004 @02:37AM (#9793255)
    About the only number you got even close to right was the 1280 horizontal resolution.

    Not really... 1280 is only the horizontal resolution for 720p (which is 720 * 16 / 9).

    1080i is 1920x1080, either 60 interlaced frames per second or 24/30 progressive.

    The parent poster is also talking about uncompressed HDTV, not the 19.25Mbps MPEG2 flavor.
  • by anti-NAT (709310) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @03:13AM (#9793337) Homepage

    Today's "ethernet" doesn't have limitations - it is really only referring to a frame format.

    The distance limitations were initially related to running ethernet in half duplex mode, due to the requirement for all devices to be able to detect a collision.

    Now that ethernet is run in full duplex the distance limitations due to collision detection have gone.

    Distance limitations in "ethernet" are now related to physical media the ethernet frame format is carried over at the specified clock rate. In most cases, cost is providing a constraint, in the sense that longer distances can sometimes be achieved over the same media, however the costs to do so rise dramatically, such that the technology might be priced out of the market it is intended for.

    For example, from memory, Cisco have been selling a variant of 1Gbps Ethernet for at least four years now called "1000BaseZX". It would reach around 90 000 metres over single mode fiber. From memory though, the GBICs (Gigabit Interface Converters) were $12 000 US each or something like that, and you needed one per end of the link. And that would be really, really, really cheap when compared with the cost of the 90 000 metres of single mode fibre.

    I don't know if the article mentions any distances for 10Gbps, at the moment it has been slashdotted to death.

  • Re:What would I do? (Score:5, Informative)

    by egomaniac (105476) on Sunday July 25, 2004 @06:17AM (#9793677) Homepage
    In your world, 'hdtv' might be 1280x1024, but in the world at least a few of us live in, HDTV (notice the caps) isn't, it's 960x540(assuming square pixels) and I imagine less than 24 bit color (All this analog stuff!). I don't know, but I would also guess that it's the same frame rate as regular old TV (~30 fps).

    There are two HDTV resolutions in current use, known as 720p and 1080i. 720p is 1280x720 60fps, and 1080i is 1920x1080 30fps (60 interlaced fields). Both of them are 24-bit truecolor.

    I have no idea where you got 960x540 from, as it does not correspond to any HDTV resolution. I'm also not sure what the reference to "all this analog crap" is supposed to mean, as HDTV broadcasts are entirely digital.
  • by Onan (25162) * on Sunday July 25, 2004 @06:57AM (#9793745)
    ...and as we all know, a server host can write about 150MB/sec...
    Oh, do we all know that? That's funny, I think that these [emc.com] people [netapp.com] seem to know [sun.com] something [fujitsu.com] different.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, 2004 @01:50PM (#9795608)
    Motherboards are in production now with 4x, 8x and 16x slots, chipsets with 32 available PCIe lanes - that's around 80 Gb/s total bandwidth

    Theoretical bandwith. I doubt you'll get very close the that maximum. FYI no-one in the server industry considers that a 4x Gen1 slot is enough to feed 10Gb/s NICs (except Intel but they still don't understand servers). Protocol overhead kills you.

    10Gb/s NICs is an important part of the debate to decide the signaling rate for PCI Express Gen 2. Intel wants 5Gb/s (2x Gen 1) but server companies want 6.25Gb/s so that they's be able to feed a 10G/s NIC with 2 lanes (instead of 4 5Gb/s lanes).

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. -- John Muir

Working...