SANTA CLARA, USA: NetLogic Microsystems Inc. has announced the availability of the industry’s lowest power 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet PHY for next-generation data center applications.
The new NLP1342 PHY is a quad-port device that integrates best-in-class receive equalization and transmit pre-emphasis technologies with ultra low latency to address new datacenter opportunities. The device supports 10Gbps SFI-to-XFI, 40Gbps XLPPI-to-XLAUI and 100Gbps CPPI-to-CAUI modes to enable a seamless migration of data centers from 10 Gigabit to 100 Gigabit throughputs.
The exponential demand for video, IPTV, social networking, peer-to-peer and virtualization services over the Internet has caused network bottlenecks in the data centers that are serving these media-rich content and services. This is driving data center managers to upgrade servers and networking equipment in the data center from 10 Gigabit links to 40 and 100 Gigabit through to support the throughputs required for next-generation services.
As datacenters continue to grow in size and capabilities, the aggregation of such large amounts of communications equipment provides many challenges in regards to minimizing power, latency and cost.
Minimizing the latency in transmitting network traffic has become one of the most important performance metric in the data center as it can have a profound impact on the overall application performance. This is particularly important because data centers are responsible for managing such mission critical and time sensitive transactions, such as financial trades, web-based services, and video content delivery.
Unlike enterprise or telco infrastructure networks that transmit packets over longer distances, data center devices are usually only a few meters apart so every micro-second reduction in latency has a very large impact on the overall application performance.
The ability to drive 10/40/100 Gbps transmission over either twin-ax copper or optical cable makes NetLogic Microsystems’ NLP1342 PHY ideally suited for next-generation data centers because of the significantly lower latency the device offers.
The NLP1342 device integrates an enhanced equalizer front end that enables lower jitter, lower latency as well as communications over extended cable distances. In addition to the superior performance of the PHY device, optical fiber and twin-ax copper inherently offer significantly lower latency when compared to traditional Cat-5/Cat-6/Cat-7 copper cabling. For example, the latency with SFP+ over the cost-effective twin-ax copper is 0.1 micro-second compared to 1.5 to 2.5 micro-seconds for Cat-5/Cat-6/Cat-7 copper, a 15-25x improvement.
In addition to lowering latency, minimizing power consumption is also critical for successful data center deployments given the large amount of high performance equipment concentrated in a small area. However, as datacenters move to 10 Gbps and faster speeds, more power is required to transmit at such higher speeds.
NetLogic Microsystems’ NLP1342 PHY device helps minimize this impact by delivering an ultra-low power profile of 0.5 Watt/channel, making it the lowest power dissipating 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet PHY device in the industry to enable energy-efficient data centers. This again compares favorably when compared to other optical and twin-ax cabling PHY devices, as well 10GBase-T PHY devices.
“The new NLP1342 device further extends our market and technology leadership in 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet PHYs by having features, interfaces and optimizations that are specific to next-generation data center Ethernet,” said Stefanos Sidiropoulos, vice president of Physical Layer Products at NetLogic Microsystems.
“By offering our industry-leading performance, jitter, latency and power dissipation in a quad-port device that can simultaneously support 10Gbps, 40Gbps and 100Gbps, we enable our customers to develop highly differentiated data center switches and servers.”
“NetLogic Microsystems’ NLP1342 PHY is the first device for the data center to support 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet transmission over twin-ax copper as well as LR and SR optical cabling,” said Jag Bolaria, senior analyst at The Linley Group. “Twin-ax copper is popular in the data centers owing to its lower latency and lower power consumption than the current 10GBASE-T copper alternative.”
In addition to lower power and lower latency, the direct-attach, twin-ax copper cabling offers a cost-effective medium for 10/40/100 Gbps communications over distances of 10 meters. This makes the NLP1342 device ideally suited for communications from top-of-rack (TOR) switches to rackmount and blade servers.
Moreover, because the enhanced equalizer front end also supports SR/LR optical cabling, the NLP1342 PHY enables server to end-of-rack (EOR) switch and TOR to EOR switch communications.
The NLP1342 PHY device exceeds all the electrical parameters of the nPPI interface as defined in P8023.ba Annex 86A and is fully compliant with the CR4/CR10 PMDs as defined in P802.3ba Clause 85.
The device also offers high levels of integration with dedicated pins for SFP+ management and control, dedicated general purpose I/Os, clock synthesizers and highly flexible and programmable Ethernet frame generators and checkers, BER calculators and link margining tools, all in a low pin-count package ideally suited for SFP+/QSFP+ designs. In addition, the PHY solution is offered in lead-free packaging to allow customers to develop environmentally friendly system solutions that comply with certain green-initiative regulations.