Which Cabling Solution is Better for Your Data Center

by http://www.fiber-mart.com

Although cabling only represents less than 10 percent of the overall data center network investment, it outlives most network elements and treated as the most difficult and potentially costly component. With the datacenter cabling ranging from 1G to 10G, 10G to 40G and even to 100G, more complex cabling is required to ensure a good service or scalability for troubleshooting. In practice, there is no exact solution that will meet all of the cable management needs. However, two kinds of cabling systems can be applied—unstructured system and structured system. Just follow the guidelines and illustration highlighted in the article will go a long way to ensure you with the information required for the successful deployment of a cabling infrastructure in your data center.
Unstructured Cabling System
Unlike the structured cabling system with a managed patch panel, a unstructured cabling only occurs when optical links are deployed point to point or device to device without installing patch panels. In this situation, cabling pathways become congested with an entangled mess of two-fiber optical patch cords. Likewise, routing new patch cords in ceiling or floor trays all the way across a data center each time a new device is deployed is extremely inefficient.
And this entanglement will bring difficulties in routing new patch cords in ceiling or floor trays all the way across the data center whenever a new device is deployed. That greatly influences work efficiency. What’s more, this system causes the overheating of data centers especially around the racks where cable clutter occurs.
Structured Cabling System
Structure cabling emerged as a way to better manage larger data center solution is a big step for the development of optical technology. Structured cabling system is a flexible, reliable and highly efficient for moving, adding and changing the infrastructure as the network grows. This kind of system requires additional investment on pre-terminated MPO cabling such as patch panel to create the cabling infrastructure.
Compared with the unstructured cabling, structured cabling architecture is generally easier to manage and more scalable. And, due to the use of trunked or shared horizontal cabling, it often carries a smaller cable footprint than direct-attach cabling. However, the flexibility of structured cabling presents potential downsides, including cost and link-loss budget. Nevertheless, existing large data centers will likely retain their structured cabling infrastructures, particularly for long-reach, zone-to-zone applications, where it generally remains the more practical choice. The following part will introduce 40G structured cabling solutions.
40G Structured Cabling Solutions
As noted before, structured cabling solutions allow for high consolidation of cabling into a compact patch panel, cabling and connectivity. The traditional duplex multimode SC or LC connections do not support 40G data rate standards, today the MPO technology is commonly found in cassette-based data center installation allowing for easy management and maintenance. Below are cabling solutions of 40G for cable management configurations with the use of MPO patch panel.
One method (seen in the above picture) uses MTP-LC harnesses to transition the MTP connector to LC leads through the use of fiber enclosure loaded with 4 fiber adapter panels (12xMTP Key-up/Key-down). This 12-fiber MTP to LC harness assembly breaks out 4 x LC uniboot legs connecting the SFP+ ports. The lengths of LC harness legs can be customized to adapt to different situations. But this often results in messy cable management. The other method uses MPO/MTP trunk cable and fiber enclosure loaded with 4 MTP high density cassettes (2 x MTP-12 to Duplex LC/UPC 10G OM4) to realize the interconnection. This 96-fiber 1RU rackmount fiber enclosure connects fiber patch cables LC to LC and MTP trunk cable. This method is specially used when the 4xLC ports are not located in close proximity on a single device or are being split between multiple devices. Because it’s more manageable to land the MTP trunk cables into fiber enclosure with individual LC ports for 4xLC patch cables.
Choose the most suitable cabling to support present and future network technology is essential for the long-standing performance of the data center. Structured cabling using an MTP cabling infrastructure is suitable for current 10 Gigabit Ethernet environments while maintaining protection for 40 Gbps environments and beyond. Compared with unstructured cabling, it might be a better solution for you. Except for the right knowledge of a structure cabling, the right tools, patience and discipline are also the key factors that will attribute to the masterpiece of your cable management in data center.

Four Basic Elements in a WDM System

by http://www.fiber-mart.com

We know that fiber can carry more data over long distances than any other physical medium. That makes fiber a very precious material. And how to make the most use of your fiber plant becomes a question. So there comes Wavelength Division Multiplexing (WDM).
Why Should We Deploy WDM ?
WDM can multiply your fiber capacity by creating virtual fibers. The foundation of WDM lies in the ability to send different data types over fiber networks in the form of light. By allowing different light channels, each with a unique wavelength, to be sent simultaneously over an optical fiber network, a single virtual fiber network is created. Instead of using multiple fibers for each and every service, a single fiber can be shared for several services. In this way WDM increases the bandwidth and maximizes the usefulness of fiber. Since fiber rental or purchase accounts for a large share of networking costs, substantial costs can be saved through the application of WDM. Next I will introduce to you the basic four elements in the form of a WDM system.
The Core Technology of WDM System
Generally speaking, a WDM system consists of four elements, that are transceiver, multiplexer, patch cord and dark fiber. The following text will explain them to you respectively.
Fiber Optic Transceivers. Optical transceivers are wavelength-specific lasers that convert data signals from SAN or WAN to optical signals that can be transmitted into the fiber. Each data stream is converted into a signal with a light wavelength that is an unique color. Due to the physical properties of light, channels cannot interfere with each other. Therefore, all WDM wavelengths are independent. Creating virtual fiber channels in this way can reduce the number of fibers required. It also allows new channels to be connected as needed, without disrupting the existing traffic services.
Optical Multiplexers. The WDM multiplexer, sometimes referred to as the Mux, is the key to optimizing, or maximizing, the use of the fiber. The multiplexer is at the heart of the operation, gathering all the data streams together to be transported simultaneously over a single fiber. At the other end of the fiber the streams are demultiplexed and separated into different channels again.
Patch cord. The transceiver transmits the high-speed data protocols on narrow band wavelengths while the multiplexer is at the heart of the operation. The patch cable is the glue that joins these two key elements together. LC fiber patch cables are popular, which connect the output of the transceiver to the input on the multiplexer.
Dark fiber. A requisite for any WDM solution is access to a dark fiber network. The most common way of transporting optical traffic over an architecture is by using a fiber pair. One of the fibers is used for transmitting the data and the other is used for receiving the data. This allows the maximum amount of traffic to be transported. At times only a single fiber is available. Because different light colors travel on different wavelengths, a WDM system can be built regardless. One wavelength is used to send data and a second one to receive it.
WDM has revolutionized the cost of network transport. Thanks to WDM, fiber networks can carry multiple Terabits of data per second over thousands of kilometers with a low cost that is unimaginable less than a decade ago. At FS, we offer a comprehensive portfolio of WDM transmission modules to support the network applications of enterprise and service provider customers.

Linux Foundation starts OPEN-O Project for open source orchestrators

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The Linux Foundation has used the Mobile World Congress this week in Barcelona to announce its intent to form the OPEN-Orchestrator Project (OPEN-O). The project will seek to develop the first open source software framework and orchestrator to enable software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) operations.
The foundation, which is also a major force behind such SDN/NFV-related projects as OpenDaylight and ONOS, says initial supporters of OPEN-O include Brocade, China Mobile, China Telecom, DynaTrace, Ericsson, F5 Networks, GigaSpaces, Huawei, Infoblox, Intel, KT, Red Hat, Raisecom, Riverbed, and ZTE. Other interested parties are welcome to participate as well, according to the foundation.
The Linux Foundation says the project is necessary because, while SDN and NFV have begun to enable autonomous, real-time telecom operations, many operational support systems (OSS) based on proprietary software are getting in the way. The result is fragmented technologies and interoperability issues. As an open source orchestration framework would enable speed SDN and NFV implementation, the thinking goes, as well as accelerate multi-vendor integration, service innovation, and network agility.
As with other Linux Foundation projects, OPEN-O governance could include a Technical Steering Committee and an End User Advisory board to ensure alignment of needs between the technical and end user communities. Project members expect to create a development and testing platform as well as build and support an open source developer community.
“Operators are now facing the transformation of capabilities to provide user-centric services, from connectivity-oriented service to integrated cross-domain, cross-layer and cross-vendor services. With the introduction of SDN and NFV, the networks are becoming increasingly automatic and service-oriented, inspiring much more creation and exploring to build up a rich and flat ecosystem,” explained Shen Shaoai, China Telecom’s deputy general manager of the Technology Department. “OPEN-O will set up the world’s first SDN and NFV unified orchestrator platform. China Telecom is expecting this platform can play a significant role in the development of SDN/NFV. China Telecom is willing to work together with other operators and partners to promote the collaborative innovation and look forward to a bright future of SDN and NFV.”

What Are SFP Ports Used For?

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If you know Cisco SFP Modules, you must know the SFP Ports. If you didn’t know what are SFP modules or SFP ports, you can read this article, which can tell you what are SFP ports on a Gigabit Switch used for?
Cisco SFP Modules, the industry-standard Cisco Small Form-Factor Pluggable Gigabit Interface Converter, links your switches and routers to the network.
SFP sockets are found in Ethernet switches, routers, firewalls and network interface cards. It interfaces a network device motherboard (for a switch, router, media converter or similar device) to a fiber optic or copper networking cable.
In many cases, SFP ports are also known as mini-Gigabit interface converter (GBIC) modules, as they have replaced the older GBIC transceivers.
SFP Port Advantage
It is flexible for the SFP port link to the network. The SFP port is the I/O device which is able to be hot-plugged. We are able to insert the Gigabit Ethernet port or slot into the SFP port and then connect the SFP port with the network. The SFP port is applied in many products and is able to exchange with the port of the 1000BASE-SX, 1000BASE-LX/LH, 1000BASE-ZX or the 1000BASE- BX10-D/U.
Why Need SFP Module?
Compared with GBIC module, SFP Modules volume ratio reduced by half, and the number of ports can be configured more than 2 times on the same panel. That can be inserted mini head fiber module slot. The Other basic features are consistent with GBIC.SFP Modules for Gigabit Ethernet Applications: Small Form-Factor Pluggable (SFP) links your switches and routers to the network.
The hot-swappable input / output device plugs into a Gigabit Ethernet port or slot. Optical and copper models can be used on a wide variety of products and intermixed in combinations of 1000BASE-T, 1000BASE-SX, 1000BASE-LX / LH, 1000BASE-EX, 1000BASE-ZX, or 1000BASE-BX10-D / U on a port-by-port basis.
SFP Ports on a Gigabit Switch
SFP ports enable Gigabit switches to connect to a wide variety of fiber and Ethernet cables in order to extend switching functionality throughout the network.
The SFP devices allow the switch to connect to fiber cables of different types — including single-mode and multimode–and speeds (1 Gbps, 10 Gbps), or even Ethernet copper cables, such as CAT5e and CAT6.
Almost all enterprise-class switches include two or more SFP ports, allowing them to become part of a ring or star-based network topology spread among different buildings, floors or areas, and connected via fiber optic cabling.
The Hot SFP Modules
The latest SFP modules, such as GLC-BX-D and GLC-BX-U, support digital optical monitoring, which lets end users monitor the performance of SFPs in real time, tracking such metrics as temperature, optical output power, optical input power, transceiver supply voltage and laser bias current.
SFPs can support speeds of up to 1 Gbps, with transmission ranges of 10 kilometers (1000BASE-BX10-D), 40 km (GLC-BX40-D) or 80 km (GLC-BX80-D), depending on the model selected.
Newer SFP+ modules support increased speeds of up to 10 Gbps; however, not all rival SFP+ modules are automatically compatible.

Should You Be Worried About Bending A Fiber Cable?

by http://www.fiber-mart.com

Fiber wires lose light no matter what. They have a db/km loss rate, this is subject matter we have covered in my other blog on Split Ratio & Budget Light Loss.
But, did you know your bend radius could affect the db loss of a fiber cable?
There is a lot of engineering, research and development that goes into building fiber network hardware. Today I’m talking about passive fiber network TAPs and the bend radius of a fiber cable.
Typical Electronic Frequency in HZ = is 1/ wavelength. In Fiber the Frequency (f) equation is the speed of light in fiber (v) /wavelength (A). The average speed of light in a fiber is around *2.14 X 10 -8 m/seconds.
Note this will cary with different fiber but is an acceptable average.
Frequency A is a higher frequency than frequency B which has a longer wavelengths.
An interesting fact – the frequency of a signal (light or photon flow) stays the same in the air or in a fiber.
Bend Loss Factors
Bend loss occurs when the fiber cable bends is tighter than the cable’s maximum bend tolerance. Bending loss can also occur on a smaller scale from such factors as:
Sharp curves of the fiber core
Displacements of a few millimeters or less, caused by buffer or jacket imperfections
Poor installation practice
Microbending: losses are due to microscopic fiber deformations in the core-cladding interface caused by induced pressure on the glass.
Macrobending: losses are due to physical bends in the fiber that are large in relation to fiber diameter.
The signal still can get through but loss is still an issue – light is power. Light distortion = power loss. This hurts your optical budge.
In other words, if you have your fibers wrapped too tightly inside your network tools – you could be losing a lot more db than you thought, affecting the distance the data can travel with integrity.
Second, if the bend is too great, there will be stress placed on the cladding that may cause micro cracks, allowing leakage over time, as well as excess stress on the connectors, also causing misalignment that can cause further drops in db.
Our passive fiber TAPs have been designed and factory tested (read ‘Born in the USA: The Story of Garland Network TAPs’) eliminating any tight bend radius issues. We did not want to have a small compact design that would require tight fiber bends, increasing the risk of db loss as well as sharp curves that can occur in the manufacturing and assembly process.
Remember, don’t bend any fiber cable too much, or you may be creating errors on your network.

How improper fiber crossing degrades network performance

by http://www.fiber-mart.com

Network technicians often commit major errors crossing fiber cables during installation. If they don’t understand polarity or rush to get their network equipment powered up, they run the risk of using the wrong patch cord. That can be bad news.
This is the 15th in a Telect blog series, entitled The ABCs of Cable Management. Product Specialist Hugo Garcia explains the different types of polarity and how it can impact your fiber optic network.
Your network performance is at risk if fiber cable polarity isn’t a priority during installation. The wrong connection can result in signal degradation.
Or worse: damaged critical active equipment, which can lead to network downtime.
The challenges can arise if polarity is not properly maintained. This can be as simple as connecting an Rx transmitter to another Rx transmitter. Your signal won’t transmit.
Polarity is often used to define a direction of flow. For example, a battery’s positive and negative polarity terminals determine the direction of its electrical current.
In fiber optics, polarity defines the direction the light signal travels through optical fiber. Unfortunately, this can cause confusion among technicians. Let’s break down the different types of polarity.
Understanding polarity in duplex fiber applications, such as 10 GbE, is straightforward. Data transmission is bidirectional over two fiber cables, meaning each fiber connects the transmitter (Tx) on one end and to the receiver (Rx) on the other end.
Shown in the example below, the transmitter should always connect to the receiver, regardless of the number of patch panel adapters or cable segments in the channel.
Duplex Polarity Application
As networks strive to achieve 40 Gbps, or even speeds of 100 Gbps, network technicians must remove transition cassettes and harnesses from the link and replace them with the proper MPO adapters and patch cords.
Polarity becomes much more complex when you’re working with MPO cables. Some important characteristics for MPO connectors are:
Pins determine gender (male or female) and are necessary for achieving the correct fiber alignment
Polarization dot, oriented to Fiber 1
MPO Characteristics
There are three types of MPO trunk cables and connectors to obtain proper MPO polarity:
1. Type A (Straight)
When components are Type A, the fiber identified as 1 (blue, according to the TIA color code) connects to Fiber 1. In other words, 1 goes to 1, also known as Key-up/Key-down. This type applies for adapters, cassettes and cables.
2. Type B (Crossed)
Fiber 1 goes to Fiber 12 or commonly called Key-up/key-up. This type also applies for adapters, cassettes and cables.
3. Type C (Cross pairs)
Type C refers to cross pairs, just like with ethernet connections. With Type C, Fiber 1 matches to Fiber 2, 2 to 1, 3 to 4 and so on. It only applies for trunk MPO cables.
TIA 568 standard specifies three different methods for managing MPO polarity: A, B and C, each requiring different types of MPO adapters and cables.
Method A
Method A polarity uses straight-through MPO trunks and interconnect cables to map the fibers on both ends of the link. To flip the polarity, an A to B patch cord (LC to LC) at one end must be connected to an A to A cord at the other end. In this method, Fiber 1 arrives at Fiber 2 at the other end of the connection.
Since the fibers at each end have the same position, Method A offers the simplest deployment for multimode channels, easily supporting network scalability for the hyperscale future.
Method B
Method B uses three Type B MPO components, or three crosses for the transceiver-transceiver connection. Thus, two A to B patch cords are required on each side of the link. In Method B, the fiber located in Position 1 (Tx) arrives at Position 12 (Rx) at the other end of the link.
Method C
In Method C, two Type A MPO cassettes and one Type C trunk cable are necessary for the system. The polarity flip occurs within the array cable itself. Type C cords use reverse-pair positioning, through crossovers in the array cord, to swap the polarity of pairs of fibers. Thus, each pair of fibers is flipped so the fiber in Position 1 (Tx) arrives at Position 2 (Rx) at the opposite end.
While this method works well for 10 Gbps applications, it does not support parallel eight-fiber 40 and 100 Gbps applications where Positions 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the MPO connection are transmitting and Positions 9, 10, 11 and 12 are receiving.
As a result, Method C is not ideal for migrating your network for the hyperscale.
Nearly half a billion (429 million) mobile devices and connections were added in 2016. That equals eight billion devices and connections globally.
Your network needs to make the switch to MPO to satisfy all that data consumption.
Deployment mistakes can happen, however. The simple way to avoid crossing fiber cables is to ensure you’re using the same type of patch cord throughout your facility.
Or you could choose preterminated cabling assemblies and MPO cassettes, an option that quickens and simplifies installation.
Ultimately, it’s vital for techs to take the time and ensure they’re maintaining proper polarity to keep your network up and running.


Broadband connection has gained a lot of popularity over the last few years in both urban and rural areas. There is a massive rise in this service amongst businesses where entrepreneurs want to promote their services and products over the web in quick and convenient manner. Due to high speed internet connection, downloading the files, uploading the video or images and chatting has become quite easy. Users don’t find any issue of slow speed nowadays due to latest technology and connection. In last couple of year, fiber optic network has emerged as one of the best connections to provide high speed access to the web world.
Dial-up, Wireless, Cable and Fiber Optics are some of the techniques to allow users to access the web world. But when it comes to access web world in high speed manner then fiber optics is the best connection which has also changed the way people using internet in the past. This connection has very thin fibers built of glass that transmit the data and files through a fiber optic network. As the glass fibers go via low level of reduction and hindrance, the connection becomes highly effective for telecommunication. Now let’s discuss why it is seen as the high speed connection for residents and commercial places:
Fastest Speed: It is a fastest broadband connection that provides ultra fast speed up to 10,000 Mbps. With the use of innovative methods and latest technologies, the connection promises to give users high speed round the clock allowing them to send emails and files in ultra fast speed. When it comes to compare fiber optics to cable connection & Digital subscriber line (DSL), then one will find that sending data or files is much quicker with fiber network even during peak hours. From live streaming to downloading video, everything becomes faster and easier with this fiber connection.
More Reliability: Fiber Optics Network is also quite reliable as compared to cable connection & Digital subscriber line (DSL). Even during the power outrage, the connection remains intact as it is made of glass that required no electricity. It is also difficult for others to hack the network as mostly the system installed in the home of users.
Temperature Fluctuation: The best thing with fiber connection is that it resists more temperature fluctuations as compared to cable and Digital subscriber line (DSL). On the hand, fiber optics network can be submerged in water as well without facing any network issue.
Cost: It is obvious that when you are getting better services then you have to pay little more. Fiber Optics network is also little expensive as compared to other ordinary connections. But when users are getting high speed then paying little more can’t be a bad decision. Today businesses are running over the internet and it is only successful when they have high speed and better connectivity round the clock.
So keeping in mind all the points, it is not wrong to say that Fiber Optics Network is best for those who want high speed connection with safe and strong connectivity.