I'm a storage connectivity nerd, but I often learn new things I missed. Reading about the new Tyan servers with AMD's Epyc server processor, I was surprised by an off-hand mention of "OCuLink" as a storage expansion port. Naturally, I did some digging and discovered what it is: OCuLink is a competitor for Thunderbolt for cabled PCI Express connectivity, offering similar … [Read more...] about What is OCuLink?
I've really enjoyed experimenting with the Raspberry Pi, and have even deployed a few as UNIX servers in my home and office network. The quad-core performance of the latest Pi models is awesome, but serious I/O limitations remain. With just one USB 2.0 interface shared for all network and storage operations, you aren't going to be able to do much with the Pi. That's why I was … [Read more...] about Here’s Something Your Raspberry Pi Can’t Do: Gigabit Ethernet and SATA in the Olimex A20-OLinuXIno-LIME2
As I mentioned in my previous post about Raspberry Pi power monitoring, I recently built a VMware vSphere "datacenter" from three Intel NUC mini PC's. One limit of the NUC is that it has just one Ethernet port. But there's a Mini PCIe slot inside the fourth-generation NUC that can be used to add a second Ethernet NIC! Here's my story. A Bit About the Intel NUC … [Read more...] about Adding a Second Ethernet Port to an Intel NUC via Mini PCIe
Greg "EtherealMind" Ferro recently "mused" that it might be a good idea to replace PCI Express (PCIe) inside servers or rack-scale infrastructure with Ethernet. But this seems to be the exact opposite of the direction the industry is headed. Rather than replacing PCIe with Ethernet, companies like Intel seem set on replacing short-range Ethernet (in rack-scale systems) with … [Read more...] about Musing: Could We Replace Ethernet With PCIe?
On reading my thoughts about the evolution of enterprise storage, culminating in what I called “The Rack Endgame” where a rack of storage, networking, and compute becomes a the basic entity of the datacenter, many pointed out that this looks an awful lot like the Facebook-led Open Compute Project (OCP). This is entirely intentional. But OCP is simply one expression of this new … [Read more...] about The Rack Endgame: Open Compute Project