Today’s data centers are bogged down. High internal traffic demands and increasing data rates make it difficult for data centers to scale. They cannot meet business demands without more bandwidth and flexibility. Software-defined networking (SDN) and all-optical circuit switching can help alleviate these problems, making it possible for data centers to address the challenges they currently face.
All-optical switching in conjunction with SDN creates a viable option for data center operators to create scalable networks that respond dynamically to evolving business requirements. In a new white paper from Polatis, new SDN-enabled all-optical switching trends are highlighted to show how data centers can overcome hurdles caused by the rise of mobile, video, and cloud-based virtual services.
SDN is a major driver for all-optical switching adoption in the data center to bring the fiber layer under software control. A growing number of multi-tenant data center operators are looking to use dynamic fiber cross-connects to enable rapid provisioning, protection, and reconfiguration of network resources on-demand. SDN’s vendor-independent control abilities greatly streamline integration of new technologies like all-optical switching into a common framework. SDN-enabled all-optical switching is positioned for larger scale deployment in many data center applications.
In conventional data center network architectures, Ethernet routers and packet switches cannot scale to meet bandwidth demands, neither economically nor physically. All-optical switching solutions offer a chance for data centers to take advantage of the strength of packet switches and routers integrated with all-optical platforms. With hybrid packet-optical switch frameworks, data center operators can better manage persistent data flows between clusters, limiting latency and relieving congestion on intermediate routers. This translates to faster applications and lower costs. With this said, all-optical switching is not a stand-in for packet switching and routers. Instead, it complements the existing network to allow for more capacity, flexibility, and scalability to address high congestion points.
Polatis’ DirectLight optical matrix switch technology enables SDN users to move toward dynamic fiber cross-connect fabrics that can scale incrementally to tens of thousands of ports with the lowest loss. Ideal for SDN applications, Polatis all-optical switching can help where connection loss, stability, and reproducibility are critical. DirectLight connects fibers without needing light to be present on the fiber, empowering data center operators to pre-provision paths, and monitor the network. With an embedded OpenFlow agent and SDN support, all-optical circuit switches from Polatis enable data center operators to enhance performance and scalability to meet growing bandwidth demands.
To learn more about all-optical switching trends in SDN and how Polatis DirectLight can be used for data center congestion relief, download the “SDN-Enabled All-Optical Circuit Switching: An Answer to Data Center Bandwidth Challenges” white paper now.