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Cabling Options for 40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi Transceivers

Cabling Options for 40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi Transceivers

The boosting global data traffic spurs the demand for faster data transmission and greater capacity over the network, and the demand is not gonna slack. Thus migration from 10G to higher speed 40G or 100G becomes an inevitable trend yet a necessity for network managers to accommodate the data boom. For 40G short-reach data communication and interconnect applications, 40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi transceiver modules are generally involved. This article guides you through the working principles of the two 40G transceivers, and then presenting the cabling options for each.

40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi at a Glance

Before we go any further, it’s better to first obtain some basic information about 40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi transceiver. As they both used to support short-range (SR) 40G connectivity, the major difference lies in the protocols, namely the way to achieve data transmission for 40G application. 40G QSFP SR4 operates over MMF ribbon with MPO connectors, utilizing 4 parallel fiber pairs (8 fiber strands) at 10Gbps each for a total of 40Gbps full duplex.

40g qsfp sr4

40G QSFP BiDi uses the same 10-Gbps electrical lanes, however, they are combined in the optical outputs. Thus requiring two fibers with a LC connector interface. Each fiber simultaneously transmits and receives 20-Gbps traffic at two different wavelengths. Which means that 40G QSFP BiDi module converts four channels each of 10Gbps transmit and receive signals to two bidirectional channels of 20Gbps signals. The connection can reach 100 m on OM3 MMF or 150 m on OM4 MMF, which is the same as 40-Gbps SR4.

40g qsfp bidi

Cabling Solutions for 40G QSFP SR4 and 40G QSFP BiDi Transceivers

Whether for 40G QSFP SR4 or BiDi Transceivers, there basically exist three cabling approaches: direct connection, interconnection and cross-connection. This section respectively illustrates the three approaches for 40G transceiver cabling.

Options for 40G QSFP SR4 Transceiver

40G SR4 operates over 12-fiber strands terminated by MPO-12 connectors, 8-fiber strands carry traffic and 4 are unused. So there are three cabling options for parallel 40G QSFP SR4 connectivity:

  • Solution 1: No conversion and uses traditional 12-fiber MTP connectivity.
  • Solution 2: Use conversion module. Converts two 12 fiber links to three 8 fiber links through a conversion patch panel.
  • Solution 3: Converts two 12-fiber links to three 8-fiber links through a conversion assembly and standard MTP patch panels.

Here we offer cabling options for parallel 40G QSFP SR4 transceiver based on these three solutions.

Scenario One: Direct Connection for 40G QSFP SR4 Transceiver

Direct connection between two parallel optics 40G Ethernet transceiver, a Type-B (key up to key up) MTP patch cable should be used. With fiber 1 on one end goes to fiber 12 on the other end, this reverse fiber positioning ensures the signal to flow from transmission on one end of the link to reception on the other end. The picture below shows an MTP patch cable directly connects two switch ports.

40g-QSFP-SR4 direct connection

Scenario Two: Interconnection for 40G QSFP SR4 Transceiver

The most basic structured cabling solution is an interconnect. The following picture shows several interconnect approaches with various patch panel options.

a. The 2×3 conversion modules allow 100% fiber utilization and constitute the most commonly deployed method. It also greatly reduced jumper complexity. The female to female Type-B polarity cable here is used to directly connect two parallel optic transceivers. That same jumper is used on both ends of the interconnect link, thus eliminating concerns about correct pinning.

b. The same trunk used in method a is adopted, but the jumper type is now male to female Type-B polarity. Thus, when you install the MTP patch cable, you would install the male end in the patch panel, and you would install the female end in the electronics.

c. This combined solution might be deployed when cabling between a spine switch, where the module is placed, and a ToR leaf switch, where the conversion harness and MTP adapter panel are located.

40g-QSFP-SR4 interconnection

Scenario Three: Cross-Connection for 40G QSFP SR4 Transceiver

The picture below shows two cross-connection link designs for cabling a 40G QSFP SR4 transceiver.

a. This link design shows a conversion module example, which again is the most common and preferred method. All the three jumpers in the link are female to female MTP patch cable with Type-B polarity. Thus, in a conversion module deployment, only one jumper type is used for a direct-connect, interconnect, or cross-connect cabling scenario.

b. Standard MTP patch panels are deployed in this method. Here the MTP patch cables at the electronics are female (into the electronics) to male (into the patch panel), although the patch cords at the cross-connect are male-to-male going into the patch panel.

40g-QSFP-SR4 cross-connection

Options for 40G QSFP BiDi Transceiver

Cabling for 40G QSFP BiDi transceiver is relatively easy. Three methods are presented here.

Scenario One: Direct Connection for 40G QSFP BiDi Transceiver

In an unstructured cabling system, devices are directly connected with fiber optic cable. This direct-attachment design can be used to connect devices within short distances in a data center network. Direct connection between two 40-Gbps devices can be provided by MMF cables with QSFP BiDi transceivers at two ends.

40g-QSFP-SR bidi direct connection

Scenario Two: Interconnection for 40G QSFP BiDi Transceiver

When it comes to structured cabling, more permanent links should be considered. The interconnection link between two 40G bidirectional ports basically consists of an MTP trunk, MTP module cassettes and LC fiber patch cables. Future migration can be achieved simply by changing the patch panels on each end, without the need to disrupt the cabling infrastructure.

40g-QSFP-SR bidi interconnection

Scenario Three: Cross-Connection for 40G QSFP BiDi Transceiver

The cross-connection design involves two structured cabling links, which connect two switches via a centralized cross-connect. This design delivers much flexibility when new equipment need to be installed: only patch cables are required to make the connection from the equipment to the patch panels.

40g-QSFP-SR bidi cross-connection

Conclusion

Judging from the cabling solutions for 40G QSFP SR4 and BiDi transceivers, it is clear that QSFP BiDi transceivers provide immense flexibility and simplicity compared to parallel 40G QSFP SR4 transceivers, while removing cost barriers for migration from 10G to 40G in data center networks. However, the main advantage of 40G SR4 transceiver over 40G BiDi transceiver is the reach. Hope what we discussed in the article could help make an informed decision.

12-Fiber MTP Based TAP LGX Cassettes for 40GbE Cabling With Network Monitoring

12-Fiber MTP Based TAP LGX Cassettes for 40GbE Cabling With Network Monitoring

40GbE is now becoming prevalent in data center. Unlike 10GbE that is used duplex LC infrastructure, the 40GbE uses a different style of fiber cabling, known as MPO/MTP cabling. Meanwhile, network monitoring is also necessary for 40GbE networks. This post present 40GbE cabling with network monitoring using 12-fiber MTP based TAP LGX cassette.

Introduction to 12-Fiber MTP Based TAP LGX Cassettes

The 12-fiber MTP based TAP LGX cassette is designed with four 12-fiber MTP connectors for network ports and monitor ports. All the connectors are on the front. The working principle and polarity inside the cassette are shown in the following picture:

principle

40GbE Direct Connection With Network Monitoring

With two 12-fiber MTP ports for live data transmit and two for monitoring, the 12-fiber MTP TAP LGX cassette can offer high performance used in the 40GbE link, namely between two 40GBASE-SR4 ports, for both signal transmission and data monitoring. See the picture below:

40GbE  connection

Related Product:
Item ID Description
1 17931 40GBASE-SR4 QSFP+ 850nm 150m MTP/MPO DOM Transceiver
2 41251 3M MTP 10G OM4 50/125 Multimode Fiber Optic Trunk Cable, 12 Fiber, Polarity B, Female-Male, LSZH, Bunch
3 63013 4xMTP Female, 70/30 Split Ratio, 12 Fibers, OM4 40GBASE SR4 TAP LGX Cassette
4 61714 12 Fibers MTP Male to 6xLC Duplex 10G OM4 Multimode Staggered Harness Cable, 3.0mm Bunch LSZH Jacket
5 31033 1RU Rack Mount LGX Fiber Enclosure unloaded, holds up to 3 LGX Cassettes
6 61714 12 Fibers MTP Male to 6xLC Duplex 10G OM4 Multimode Staggered Harness Cable, 3.0mm Bunch LSZH Jacket
7 41251 3M MTP 10G OM4 50/125 Multimode Fiber Optic Trunk Cable, 12 Fiber, Polarity B, Female-Male, LSZH, Bunch
8 17931 Generic Compatible 40GBASE-SR4 QSFP+ 850nm 150m MTP/MPO Transceiver for MMF
10GbE to 40GbE Migration With Network Monitoring

Using a MTP harness cable assembly, we can easily achieve the 10GbE to 40GbE migration with monitoring based on the above applications:

10GbE to 40GbE migration

Related Product:
Item ID Description
1 17931 Generic Compatible 40GBASE-SR4 QSFP+ 850nm 150m MTP/MPO Transceiver for MMF
2 41251 3M MTP 10G OM4 50/125 Multimode Fiber Optic Trunk Cable, 12 Fiber, Polarity B, Female-Male, LSZH, Bunch
3 63013 4xMTP Female, 70/30 Split Ratio, 12 Fibers, OM4 40GBASE SR4 TAP LGX Cassette
4 61714 12 Fibers MTP Male to 6xLC Duplex 10G OM4 Multimode Staggered Harness Cable, 3.0mm Bunch LSZH Jacket
5 31033 1RU Rack Mount LGX Fiber Enclosure unloaded, holds up to 3 LGX Cassettes
6 61714 12 Fibers MTP Male to 6xLC Duplex 10G OM4 Multimode Staggered Harness Cable, 3.0mm Bunch LSZH Jacket
7 42482 3M MTP-4LC Duplex 10G OM4 50/125 Multimode Fiber Optic Harness Fan-out/Breakout Cable, 8 Fiber, Polarity B, Male, LSZH-Magenta, Bunch
8 11589 Generic Compatible 10GBASE-SR SFP+ 850nm 300m DOM Transceiver

 

Reference: TAP LGX CASSETTE Optics Cabling Connection in Date Center Hosting

What’s the Difference Between MTP LGX Cassette, HD Cassette and TAP Cassette?

What’s the Difference Between MTP LGX Cassette, HD Cassette and TAP Cassette?

MTP Cassettes, as an easy-to-install and cost-effective plug-and-play solution in today’s fiber optic cable patching system, are used to interconnect MTP backbones with LC or SC patching. Providing secure transition between MTP and LC or SC discrete connectors, they allow for rapid deployment of data center infrastructure as well as improved troubleshooting and reconfiguration during MACs (moves, adds and changes) by being mounted in 1U or 4U 19″ multi-slot chassis. The MTP LGX cassette, HD cassette and TAP cassette are variants of the MTP cassettes. They have similarities but also have their own unique features. As such, many users are confused by them during purchase. This post is going to understand the similarity and difference between them.

Similarity

As mentioned above, the three kinds of MTP cassette have something in common. They all contain factory pre-terminated and tested MTP-LC fan-outs to deliver optimal performance and reliability. Low loss MTP Elite and LC or SC Premium versions are offered featuring low insertion loss for demanding power budget high speed networks.

Difference

I will present their differences from three aspects in this section.

Package
The package is the most obvious difference to distinguish LGX cassette and HD cassette. The former is designed with the standard LGX package, usually being mounted in a three-slot chassis. While the HD cassette is more compact, which can be mounted in a four-slot or even five-slot chassis so that is more suitable for high-density applications. In addition, the HD cassette can be also designed with the keyed LC adapters, which help reduce unauthorized connections in the key network. It is noted that TAP cassette can be designed in LGX and HD packages.

HD-vs-LGX

Applications
As we know, the main application of MTP cassette is to achieve fast and easy patching between MTP backbone and LC patching. But for TAP cassette, except patching application, it is specially designed for network monitoring. Because there is a splitter in the TAP cassette, which can help achieve a complete copy of all traffic between two devices, for test and access purposes (click here to learn more about TAP cassette).

TAP-vs-normal

Cost
Between these three kinds of cassettes, TAP cassette is the most expensive one as it has not only the patching function but also the monitoring function. HD cassette is a little more expensive than LGX, because of the compact design and premium adapters. But actually, as the market continues to mature, LGX cassette and HD cassette are offered in a close cost by some vendors, e.g. FS.COM.

Type Product Description Price
HD Cassette 1xMTP Male to 6xLC/UPC Duplex, 0.35dB IL, Polarity A,12 Fibers 10G OM3 Laser Optimized MPO/MTP Cassette US$81.00
LGX Cassette 12 Fibers 10G OM3 LC Duplex 12 Strands MTP Male 0.35dB Standard LGX Cassette, Polarity Type A US$81.00
TAP LGX Cassette 2xMTP Female to 6xLC Duplex, 70/30 Split Ratio, 12 Fibers, OM3 10GBASE TAP LGX Cassette US$480.00
Conclusion

MTP LGX Cassette, HD Cassette and TAP Cassette are all widely used in today’s data center network to meet different demands. If your cabling system is not a high-densiy one, the LGX cassette can meet your demands in general. If you wanna to deploy it in the high density and ultra high density environment, you should choose the HD type. Of course, TAP is your preferred option when you require to monitor the data traffic.

Use TAP Module for Efficient Network Monitoring in 10GBASE-SR Link

Use TAP Module for Efficient Network Monitoring in 10GBASE-SR Link

The growth in data traffic is being driven both by increased cloud and big data services. Data center managers are facing a challenge of gaining superior visibility of their networks, enhancing application performance, and ensuring integrity of the security system. Traffic access points (TAPs) which are accurate, reliable and OPEX-saving are the ideal solution to access the data and meet the demands on extensive visibility. This post will show a typical 10GBASE-SR link including an optical cross-connect with an integrated 50/50 TAP Module.

Network Monitoring With TAP Modules

In today’s modern data centers, effectively monitoring and managing the data traffic is one of an important parts to evaluate the performance of data centers. Implementing TAP into the network for data collection and analysis enables data center managers to continuously and timely monitor the equipment and network which ensures rapid response time when problems are identified. TAP module is a commonly used component in data center. It is connected between two switch ports via LC or MTP patch cords, establishing an identical copy of the optical signal passing through it.

Understanding the Signal Path Schematics of TAP & TAP Module

The working principle of TAP is simple. In general, the fiber optic cable with the incoming signal is connected to the splitter input. The split signal is then separated into the live output which is connected to the receiving inband device, and the TAP output which is connected an out-of-band device. Due to the fact that a TAP utilizes such splitters in a duplex fashion, a complete copy of all traffic between two devices can be produced, as the following picture shown:
TAP-principlesTAP module, also called TAP cassette, or fiber TAP cassette, is generally a LGX cassette designed for TAP and patching applications. As the right side of the picture shown, the two MTP connectors (live port) provide two connections for serving the live traffic channels via trunk cables, and two MTP connectors (TAP) serve the TAP channels for connecting to monitoring equipment via MTP trunk or MTP-LC harness cables. And the front surface of the modules provides 12 LC-duplex ports for patching, as the left side shown.
TAP modules

Use Case of 50/50 TAP Module in 10GBASE-SR Link at the Cross-Connect

A 50/50 TAP module uses a 50/50 ratio which means 50% of the incoming light goes to the live port and 50% to the TAP port. A 50/50 TAP module is usually used between two given network devices such as switches, routers, and storage, providing network and security personnel a connection for monitoring. The picture below shows a typical 10GBASE-SR link including an optical cross-connect with an integrated 50/50 TAP module.

TAP Module Use Case

Conclusion

TAP module is an ideal solution for data center managers to effectively monitor and maintain their network dynamic and data traffic. If you are still worrying about the complex data traffics monitoring, try to use TAP modules in your network.

Method B Link With FS.COM MPO/MTP Cassettes

Method B Link With FS.COM MPO/MTP Cassettes

MPO/MTP cassettes are typically designed with 12 or 24-fiber MPO/MTP adapter in the rear panel and breakout to 6 or 12 duplex LC adapters in the front panel. MPO/MTP cassettes provides adaptability for the changing data center environment, offering great advantages, such as cost and space saving, quick to install, simple to manage, and so on. In FS.COM’s MPO/MTP cassettes product line, there are two types of MPO/MTP cassettes used for polarity Method B Link—Type B1 and Type B2. In this post, these two solutions will be presented.

As we know, generally, there are three polarity options for MPO/MTP cable assemblies. Method B is the second polarity method that employs Key-Up to Key-Up adapters to link straight-through Key-Up to Key-Up ribbon cables to fiber cassettes. Method B cassettes are identical to Method A cassettes except that they use Key-Up to Key-Up adapters. Inside the MPO/MTP cassette, from MPO/MTP adapter to LC adapters, there are two kinds of fiber arrange methods. Straght-through 1-1 wiring and Crossover 1-12 wiring, namely Type B1 and Type B2 cassttes offered by FS.COM. The following diagrams shows the Method B Link with Type B1 and Type B2 MPO/MTP Cassettes.

MTP MPO/MTP Cassette Solution – Type B1 Polarity

Type B1 Cassette

MTP MPO/MTP Cassette Solution – Type B2 Polarity

Type B Cassette

FS.COM MPO/MTP Cassettes are equivalent to Panduit, Corning and Levtion optic cassettes, which are more flexibly accommodating for the changing data center environment and specially designed to reduce installation time and cost. For more information, please visit the official website of FS.COM or contact the sales team via sales@fs.com.

Image Source: http://www.fs.com