Intel’s new family of Intel Ethernet X520 Server Adapters are the most flexible and scalable Ethernet adapters for today’s demanding data centre environments. Data centre networks are being pushed to their limits. The escalating deployments of servers with multi-core processors and demanding applications such as High Performance Computing (HPC), database clusters, and video-on-demand are driving the need for 10 Gigabit connections. Customers require flexible and scalable I/O solutions to meet the rigorous requirements of running mission-critical applications in virtualized and unified storage environments.
- Support for AFT/SFT/ALB
- Support for 10GbE iSCSI
- PCIe v2.0 (5 GT/s)
- Designed For Multi-core Processors
The explosive growth in virtualization is leading to an increasing demand for network performance. With more Virtual Machines (VMs) running on each multi-core server, networking traffic is dramatically increased with each VM competing for available I/O bandwidth. Intel's new family of Intel Ethernet X520 Server Adapters addresses networking bottlenecks in virtualized environments. These new adapters enable network-intensive applications to achieve the performance expected in a virtualized environment.
The Intel Ethernet X520 family of server adapters provides the best networking performance available in the industry, whether the physical port is configured in an emulation mode using the virtual switch in the Virtual Machine Monitor (VMM), or is directly assigned to a virtual machine. In the emulation mode, Intel's I/O technology, Virtual Machine Device queues1 (VMDq) optimizes network performance by offloading data sorting and copying from the software Virtual Switch in the VMM to the Intel Ethernet 82599 10 Gigabit Controller. This configuration is best suited for a large number of VMs running standard applications that have limited bandwidth and latency requirements.
For mission-critical applications, where dedicated I/O is required for maximum network performance, users can assign a dedicated virtual adapter port to a VM. Using another Intel technology, Virtual Machine Direct Connect (VMDc), on an Intel Ethernet X520 server adapter provides direct VM connectivity and data protection across VMs. VMDc technology allows the data to bypass the software virtual switch and provides near-native performance. It assigns either physical or virtual I/O ports to individual VMs directly. This technology is best suited for applications that demand the highest I/O throughput and lowest latency performance such as database, storage, financial and other applications.
VMDc uses the PCI-SIG SR-IOV capability which is a mechanism for devices to advertise their ability to be directly assigned to multiple virtual machines. SR-IOV allows for the partitioning of a PCI function into many virtual interfaces for the purpose of sharing the resources of a PCI Express* (PCIe) device in a virtual environment. These virtual interfaces are called Virtual Functions. Each virtual function can support a unique and separate data path for I/O-related functions within the PCI Express hierarchy. Use of SR-IOV with a networking device, for example, allows the bandwidth of a single port (function) to be partitioned into smaller slices that may be allocated to specific VMs, or guests, via a standard interface.