Dell EMC releases new set of switches, software updates and SD-WAN nodes

Digital transformation is driving Dell EMC to push out a slew of new switches, software and nodes to expand its open networking capabilities. These include the new Dell EMC S4200-ON switch, Networking S5048 switch, SmartFabric Services and SD-WAN Ready Nodes

Digital transformation is changing the way companies operate. Hardware is switching to software, big machines are switching to fabric and organizations are switching to the cloud. According to research firm International Data Corporation (IDC), by 2020, approximately 50% of the Global 2000 will see most of their business depend on their ability to produce digitally-enhanced products, services and experiences. Moreover, according to a report by Gartner, 75% of end users indicated they expect an uptick in relevance of open networking in their purchasing decisions in the next two years.

Digital transformation has created a need to connect servers in data centers. The new Dell EMC S4200-ON switch provides 500X larger buffers and 15X larger tables than standard Dell EMC 10/100GbE switching platforms, according to the company. In addition to using the product in server racks, it can be used at the network edge to connect data centers, Jeff Baher, technical marketing leader at Dell, told RCR Wireless News:

“Previously you would use a traditional router product to do that. With this new platform, and its ability to carry the full internet routing cable, you can now push this out to the edge where you would otherwise have a more expensive, proprietary system to connect the data centers together.”

Digital transformation is also pushing the limits of standard 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) links. Data centers are moving from 10 GbE to 25 GbE. The Dell EMC Networking S5048 25/100GbE switch is intended for customers that want to ease into 25 GbE.

“So if you wanted to prepare for moving to 25 GbE, with the S5048, you can pull out your existing 10 GbE, put this in, run it at 10 GbE and you’d have the exact same feature parodied between what you are running already with OS9, and then when you are ready, you can upgrade the nix in the server or the servers themselves,” Baher said. The S5148 switch, which Dell released in spring, is intended for customers that want to tackle 25 GbE more aggressively.

Dell updated its OS10 Open Networking Enterprise Edition software with new SmartFabric Services as well, which the company said is designed to simplify the deployments of fairly large scale data center environments. According to Dell, SmartFabric Services provides a way to unify switches through single pane of glass management. “You can simplify the configuration, pushing the configurations out to the switches, and then you have a full life cycle management for how the fabric itself is operating,” Baher said.

Dell is also dipping its toes into the SD-WAN market with its SD-WAN Ready Nodes, which provide turnkey capabilities. Dell sees great opportunity in the SD-WAN market, which is expected to enjoy a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 69.6% and reach $8.05 billion in 2021, according to IDC. “We believe there is enough critical mass in the vendor community with solutions and on the customer side, both large and small, with the benefits, that we see this to be a pretty significant market for many years to come,” Baher said.

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