The Fabric Interconnects Layer

A core part of the Cisco Unified Computing System, the Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnects provide both network connectivity and management capabilities to all attached blades and chassis. The Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnects offers line-rate, low-latency, lossless 10 Gigabit Ethernet and Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) functions.

The interconnects provide the management and communication backbone for the Cisco UCS Blades and UCS Blade Server Chassis. All chassis, and therefore all blades, attached to the interconnects become part of a single, highly available management domain. In addition, by supporting unified fabric, the Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnects provides both the LAN and SAN connectivity for all blades within its domain.

Typically deployed in redundant pairs, fabric Interconnects provide uniform access to both networks and storage, eliminating the barriers to deploying a fully virtualized environment.

This layer monitors the fabric interconnects and their critical hardware components such as the PSUs, the uplink and FC ports, and fans, and proactively alerts administrators to potential hardware failures and operational issues experienced by the fabric interconnects; this way, the layer ensures the continuous availability of the interconnects, and thus eliminates any disruption in communication for the blades and the blade server chassis.

layer2tests(1)

Figure 1 : The tests mapped to the Fabric Interconnects layer

Let us discuss about each test mapped to this layer in the following pages;