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Bridging Legacy Fibre Channel and Modern Ethernet Clients with iSCSI and NAS

September 30, 2016 | BY: Paul Davis

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Many Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) programs have been deployed for a number of years, if not decades. Some of these programs from the 1990’s and early 2000’s employed Fibre Channel (FC) technology to reliably transport sensor data over significant distances. With its fiber optic infrastructure, guaranteed delivery, and robust 8b/10b encoding, FC was a logical choice for sensor designers and system architects. Leveraging the rapid commercial developments in FC meant designers could ride the wave of new and exciting products and software. As often happens, that wave of development has passed.

While still employed in data centers, the development of new Fibre Channel disks switches, and host bus adapters (HBA) has slowed considerably. Major FC companies like Seagate, Brocade, and Qlogic have ceased production of their older, slower-speed products. For new installations, Serial ATA (SATA) and Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) disks have replaced FC disks in data centers, and Ethernet has become more pervasive, scalable, and reliable for networking and data transport.

Fibre Channel

With millions of dollars and lots of time invested in FC-based sensors on military platforms, how can a system architect upgrade a legacy platform with modern data storage and recording, but retain the FC sensors on-board?

This paper will discuss the history of Fibre Channel and how FC emulation in a modern data storage device allows the continued use of FC-based sensors. Two different storage approaches are discussed showing an improvement from the initial idea to a second generation approach. The new approach shows the idea of allowing FC data to be accessed by modern Ethernet clients via iSCSI and NAS protocols over Ethernet.

Download our Bridging Legacy Fibre Channel and Modern Ethernet Clients with iSCSI and NAS whitepaper to learn more about:

  • Fibre Channel
  • iSCSI
  • Network attached storage
  • Block data
  • Sharing SCSI block data in an Ethernet environment

Author’s Biography

Paul Davis

Director, Product Management - Data Solutions

Paul Davis began his career for Curtiss-Wright as a Research Manager for the Dayton, OH facility in 1997. Paul has held positions including: Director of Engineering managing a staff of 40+ engineers, managers, technicians, and co-op students; Product Manager for the switches, recorders, and various board level products; and now Director of Product Management. Prior to joining Curtiss-Wright, Paul worked in engineering and engineering management positions for 19 years.

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