Arista is also applying VXLAN tunneling, which it has used within the data center and in spine and leaf switches, to create Layer 2 service extensions between sites. For Layer 2 spine peering, Arista EOS has added route scale optimization for spine switches.
Arista has a few name-brand customers for the wares. Cloud storage company Box is using Arista’s 7500E coherent DWDM offering to increase bandwidth between its data centers. Equinix is using Arista’s VXLAN cloud interconnect and 7500E platform to build out its global Internet exchange, while Netflix is using Arista’s switching platform at the edge of its content delivery network.
A DWDM Device Diet
While geographically dispersed data centers have traditionally been built with one primary location and several backup locations, today’s cloud-based data centers are being treated as a single logical compute and storage cluster.
The newer model requires more bandwidth between sites as well as increased levels of security. Arista’s new products are designed to extend spine networking platforms to include interconnect use cases as well as to cut down on external DWDM devices.
Using off-the-shelf chips, Arista’s new linecard combines switching with coherent DWDM optical interfaces for transmissions up to 5,000 km. On the security front, it provides MACsec 256-bit encryption on all ports at 100 Gb/s. The linecards can support up to six ports, but customers don’t need to buy all six up front.
“We’ve had some DWDM connectivity options, including transceivers, optics, etc., in the past, but now what we have is a fully integrated, long-haul linecard,” says Jeff Raymond, Arista’s vice president of EOS product management and services. By tapping into the increased capabilities of merchant silicon, Raymond says, Arista built its DWDM card in-house.
The new products provide operational efficiencies as well as capex savings, says Martin Hull, Arista’s senior director of product management.
“You’re always going to need a Layer 2 or Layer 3 router, and if you want to go over long haul with 100 Gb/s, you need a complex, dedicated DWDM transport system,” he says. “If you wanted to do encryption of that information, then you’re going to need separate, discrete encryption devices that have multiple ports of 100 Gb/s on them.”
The end result, according to Hull, would be equipment from three different suppliers with three different support contracts, and three different operating and transport teams. Arista is enabling DWDM at 100 Gb/s natively on a switch, offering integrated encryption into long-haul optics, and putting all of it on its 7500E switches.
“It’s providing customers simplicity,” Hull says. “It’s secure because they have integrated encryption, and it’s more reliable because it has fewer devices.”
The DWDM 100 Gb/s module for the 7500E will be available next month, while Arista’s VXLAN for inter-data-center platforms is available now.