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Zoning is implemented by SAS Domain Manager, LSI's software running inside the switch. Zoning in T10 is used to fan out connections to [create] more connections, as in a JBOD," he said, referring to the T10 technical committee, which developed the spec. �We're not inventing anything new, we're just using the 6-Gbs SAS spec.
That's significant, he said, because if a server crashes, the replacement server will recognize existing storage configurations immediately upon connection to the switch.
As a bulwark against switch failure, the LSI switches themselves support redundancy. "So if you lose one switch, you can still access the storage through the other switch," said Callaghan. Device software also implements firmware management, diagnostics and topology browsing.
Watch for a hands-on review of the SAS6160 from the CRN Test Center in the coming weeks. Listing for $2,495, the SAS6160 began shipping on Oct. 12 and is available through CDW, NewEgg and high-tech distributors. LSI also offers a two-switch, 1U rack mounting kit for $450 list.