Which of the following Cisco FabricPath features improves on data center scalability?
- use of iSCSI instead of FCoE
- deployment of consistent policies
- elimination of reliance on STP
- convergence of network and storage
Of the available choices, the elimination of reliance on Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) to ensure a loop-free switching environment is a Cisco FabricPath feature that improves data center scalability and growth. Cisco Unified Fabric uses virtual Port Channel (vPC) in place of technologies such as EtherChannel, which was developed to enable redundant high-speed connectivity between switches in an STP topology. However, STP is still present to ensure that switching loops can be mitigated if they occur. Cisco FabricPath, on the other hand, is a Cisco Unified Fabric technology that completely replaces STP with the Intermediate System-to-Intermediate System (IS-IS) routing protocol. The combination of IS-IS with the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) networking model Layer 2 fabric’s simplicity and fabric extenders enhances the scalability of Cisco Unified Fabric beyond the practical limits of a normal Layer 2 topology.
The deployment of consistent network policies is a Cisco Unified Fabric feature that improves on data center security, not a Cisco FabricPath feature that improves on data center scalability. Cisco Unified Fabric allows the use of templates and a common switch operating system (OS) to ensure the deployment of network policies consistently across the fabric and its virtualized environments. The use of templates reduces the likelihood of human error when deploying network policies. In addition, Cisco Unified Fabric contains virtualization-aware security products.
The use of Internet Small Computer Systems Interface (iSCSI) instead of Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) in a Cisco Unified Fabric enables the encapsulation of Fibre Channel (FC) in Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) packets; it is not a Cisco FabricPath feature that improves on data center scalability. The use of iSCSI in a Cisco Unified Fabric can be considered an alternative to the use of FCoE in a fabric that does not have strict storage connectivity requirements. Unlike iSCSI, FCoE encapsulates FC in Ethernet frames.
Convergence of network and storage is a Cisco Unified Fabric feature that simplifies operation and reduces management endpoints, not a Cisco FabricPath feature that improves on data center scalability. A typical Cisco Unified Fabric architecture is used to merge storage area network (SAN) features with a local area network (LAN). The resulting converged network and storage is delivered over an Ethernet fabric.