The Stack Archive

NYC: Mellanox commits to open future with the Spectrum and ConnectX-4 releases

Thu 25 Jun 2015


by John Hatcher, ed. Data Centre Management magazine

At a high profile event at the top of the new World Trade Centre in New York, Mellanox unveiled two new products that it says will speed up data centre operations and make a huge difference in the way data centres are operated.

The first product is the Spectrum, which will be available later in the year and supports 10, 25, 40, 50 and 100 Gigabit end-to-end Ethernet connectivity for data centre storage and servers,


The company says it is the world’s first non-blocking 100 Gigabit Ethernet switch, and has zero packet loss performance, making it an efficient building-block for cloud, Web 2.0 and enterprise applications.

“We are forecasting a very strong uptake in 100 Gigabit Ethernet data centre switching, with shipments increasing from approximately ten thousand in 2014 to over ten million by 2019,” said Seamus Crehan, president of Crehan Research. “With the introduction of this high-density 100 Gigabit Ethernet switch, Mellanox is in a position to take advantage of the pent-up bandwidth demand in cloud data centres, where it already has had considerable success with its high-speed low-latency adapter products,”

The other product launched is the ConnectX-4 Lx 10/25/40/50 Gigabit Ethernet adapter. The adapter allows businesses to migrate to higher-performance technology as their bandwidth requirements increase without demanding an infrastructure overhaul or added operating expense.

ConnectX-4 Lx supports Multi-Host technology which enables multiple compute and storage hosts to connect to a single adapter. Also included is native hardware support for RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE), stateless offload engines, and GPUDirect.

Gilad Shainer, vice president of marketing, Mellanox Technologies, commented “We developed ConnectX-4 Lx in anticipation of businesses’ need to migrate to higher-performance solutions as greater bandwidth is needed for cloud and Web 2.0 data centres. The adapter allows for 2.5x the performance to be packed into the same infrastructure footprint improving overall server and storage utilization to achieve maximum return-on-investment.”


Mellanox also supports the Open Ethernet initiative, which is based on a complete separation between the switch hardware and the switch software. In simple terms, Open Ethernet allows any software to be run on any hardware and allows either the hardware or the software to be changed without changing the other components.

This grants IT managers and data centre planners the option to make independent selections with regard to their switching equipment and to “mix and match” offerings from different equipment vendors to achieve optimal configuration and have better control of both capital and operating expenses.

The company saw its share price rise 2 per cent on the back of the launch, and institutions are predicting shares to reach $60 from their current price of around $52.50 in the coming months, if Intel’s server upgrade for super computers continue to drive Mellanox’s sales.


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