Networking in a hyper-converged era

Dell Networking makes your journey to a cloud built with Dell XC hyperconverged appliance a simple and no-risk reality. Our resilient high-performance architecture improves availability and helps meet Service Level Agreements (SLAs) more effectively.

Dell XC appliances with Nutanix® provides a tiered storage solution to VMs. Every host in an XC cluster houses a Controller VM (CVM), which runs the Nutanix software and handles all storage I/O operations for the host’s hypervisor and all the VMs residing on that host. In the case of ESXi, the host server’s SSDs and hard disk drives are directly passed through to the CVM for management.

Administrators can create a storage container from the Dell XC cluster’s disks for all the cluster’s hosted VMs. Dell XC cluster nodes typically have a small number of fast but low-capacity SSDs and a larger number of slower but high-capacity HDDs. Dell XC’s storage tiering/prioritization works to move data to the most appropriate location (either local SSDs, cluster SSDs, or HDDs) based on availability of fast storage and how frequently the data in question is accessed. By converging compute and storage resources into single appliance nodes, scaling Dell XC clusters out is easy and flexible.

Software Defined Storage creates unique networking challenges

The software-defined, shared-nothing, scale-out approach to storage provides flexibility and high performance while eliminating performance bottlenecks and scalability limitations. The network fabrics designed to perform very effectively in a traditional data center result in a static and rigid network fabric that does not respond well to ever changing and fluid application requirements of Future-ready data centers.

One network for any type of data

A traditional data center mandates specialized networks focused on forwarding specific type of data such as storage or compute. A hyperconverged data center demands that the same network be robust enough to handle any type of data.

Higher performance for higher utilization rates

Hyperconverged appliances push the scale of virtualization to a new limit. Higher virtualization results in higher utilization of available network bandwidth. A hyperconverged data center demands that the network must be able to deliver predictably high performance all the time.

Scale-out approach for growth

A key tenet of hyperconverged data centers is the truly modular scale-out approach to effectively respond to ever increasing workload requirements. A hyperconverged data center demands that network fabric must also scale-out and not force IT to pay now for what may or may not be needed in the future.

Resilient architecture for predictable performance

Customers today expect IT services to be always available when they need it and where they need it. In a hyper-fast business climate, application downtime can have a devastating impact on business. A hyperconverged data center demands that network must be architected to offer a resilient framework that handles link, component, or device failures without impacting the application.

Five Reasons Why Dell Networking for Dell XC webappliances based on Nutanix OS

The combined Dell Networking and Dell XC solutions with Nutanix® enables faster, more secure delivery of highly available applications while driving down total cost of ownership.

1. A robust fabric for any type of traffic

Dell Networking switch and networking architecture is designed to ensure that all critical applications and workloads deliver excellent performance for the users. Storage, host, VM mobility, fault tolerance, and other types of data with unique traffic personas are provided connectivity to best ensure an always-on user experience.

2. Modular and flexible growth

As one of the biggest proponents of the spine-and-leaf architecture based on fixed Ethernet switches, Dell Networking lowers the cost of initial deployment. More importantly, the customers are able to grow the networking fabric in smaller steps while ensuring predictably high performance for all Dell XC appliances.


3. Highly-resilient fabric resulting in better SLAs

A highly resilient network architecture with extensive interoperability test and validation processes and technologies such as Virtual Link Trunking (VLT) reduces network and application downtime. Fewer downtime events allows IT to more effectively and predictably meet their SLAs freeing up their time for more value added activities.

4. Faster time to deployment contributes to business agility

Hyperconverged infrastructure based on Dell XC with Nutanix® and Dell Networking has been designed to significantly reduce design and deployment times while enabling a much faster time to application and service availability. In a rapidly changing business conditions a faster IT response time plays a critical role in the success of the organization.

5. Do more with less

Dell XC and Dell Networking’s approach of leveraging industry-standard hardware reduces overall cost of the solution for the customer. The building blocks of this solution consume less rack space, less power, and less cooling capacity resulting in more resources for IT.

Dell Networking switches for the Future-ready data center based on Dell XC web-scale applicanes

Switch Type Ports Ideal for
S4048-ON ToR/Fixed 48x10Gbe with 6x40GbE

Single rack cluster

Multi-rack spine-and-leaf

S4820T ToR/Fixed 48x10GbE with 4x40GbE

Single rack cluster

Multi-rack spine-and-leaf
S4048T ToR/Fixed 48x10GbE with 6x40GbE

Single rack cluster

Multi-rack spine-and-leaf

S6000-ON ToR/Fixed 112x10GbE with 4x40GbE

Single rack cluster

Multi-rack spine-and-leaf
S6100-ON ToR/Modular 128x10GbE 

Single rack cluster

Multi-rack spine-and-leaf
S3048-ON ToR/Fixed  48x1GbE with 2x10GbE Management network

Solution Briefs

Networking Deployment Guides

Additional Resources