BladeSystem Virtual Connect

Adding FlexFabric to an existing enclosure ?

Trusted Contributor

Adding FlexFabric to an existing enclosure ?

Dave had a configuration question:





We are wanting to sell FlexFabric modules to an existing site that has Virtual Connect-Ethernet in bays 1-4 and Brocade FC modules in 5 & 6.

It appears they want FlexFabric modules in bays 7 & 8.


Desired design


C7000 chassis interconnects

Bays 1-4 VC Ethernet (already owns)

Bays 5-6 4/12 brocade switches (already owns) Bays 7-8 Flexfabrics


C7000 chassis with bl460 blades

7xG1s (already owns) with dual port FC mezz cards mapped to 4/12 and 1Gbe VC.

 2xG6s (already owns) and 6xG7s with Flex-10 mezz cards in mezz slot 2 mapped to FlexFabric modules


Everything in the fabric (4/12, FlexFabric, HDS, and EVA) will connect into external 8/24 RackMount switches.



I think this is in error as the way ports map out to 5, 6, 7 & 8. I also believe that there is an issue with VC-E being the management of VCM with FlexFabri modules in the mix. I believe that they would need to rework the VC Domain so that the FlexFabric modules would be the controller, which would mean updating VC code.


Any verification or correction would be appreciated.




Steve answered:




Dave, you are correct.  This configuration will NOT work.  With H/H blades already using Brocades in bays 5/6, Bays 7/8 can’t be used.


Considering they have G6 and G7 blades (and G1 Blades) , they would see much better value in installing the FF modules into Bays 1/2 and removing the existing VC 1/10 modules.


Better value, in that the G6/G7 servers’ integrated NICs will operate at 10Gb.  The G7 servers could also leverage the FC connections through FF.


Also, the G1 servers NICs, when connected to a 10Gb module, will operate at 2.5Gb.  So, even the older G1 servers will get a NIC speed increase with FF in Bay 1/2.


Now, to do this, they will need to delete and re-create the VC domain, so an outage will be required.




Comments or suggestions?