When Plexxi was announced as a presenter at Networking Field Day 5 (NFD5), I had no idea who they were – and I’m guessing many readers are in the same boat. Plexxi want to be your core Ethernet network, but in a rather unique way.
So here’s the concept: What if you could create a physical ring of Ethernet switches that were actually fully meshed so that any switch could talk to any other switch without any Ethernet switching along the way? And how about if you could dynamically change the bandwidth available between switches as needed? Then finally, how about trying to generate an optimal connectivity mesh based on application needs?
I’ll bet that at one time or other in your life, you’ve had your name written in your clothes. You know what I’m talking about – either you buy some specially made labels to stick in your clothing, or you use one of those laundry markers to scrawl it on the care label. Usually this is exclusive to children’s clothing, as perhaps they are most likely to leave their clothing lying around for somebody else to find; if their name is in it, the finder can clearly identify who the item belongs to and everybody will be happy, especially Mom and Pop who paid for the thing.
As adults however, it seems most of us don’t label our clothes – we assume that we are too clever to lose anything, so we become careless about labeling it. In reality, writing your name in your clothes takes seconds and may save you down the line, so it’s kind of stupid not to.
I know what you’re thinking – what on earth does this have to do with networking? Let me explain…