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Fibre Channel Products for SANs

Chapter Description

To build a successful SAN that fulfills all or most of the business requirements of a corporation, each device must be chosen with care and understanding. This sample chapter discusses the most popular Fibre Channel options.

Bridges

Fibre Channel bridges allow the integration of legacy SCSI devices in a Fibre Channel network. By allowing the inclusion of expensive SCSI devices such as legacy SCSI disks and drives, SCSI tape subsystems, and optical CD and DVD devices in Fibre Channel storage networks, Fibre Channel bridges help in reducing the total cost of implementation of SANs. The biggest advantage of Fibre Channel bridges is the LAN-free backup and archiving that reduces traffic overhead from LANs by an average of 400–500%.

Fibre Channel bridges provide the capability for Fibre Channel and SCSI interfaces to support both SCSI and Fibre Channel devices seamlessly. Therefore, they are often referred to as FC-SCSI routers.

Various vendors offer Fibre Channel bridges. IBM, Gadzoox, HP, and Vixel are prominent Fibre Channel bridge vendors. The price of bridges can range from $7000 to $10,000.