Avaya Cajun switch

* The Reviewmeister takes a look at Avaya's Cajun P882

Continuing our testing of 10 Gigabit Ethernet switches, we move to Avaya's offering, the Cajun P882.

Rather than delivering actual 10 Gigabit throughput, Avaya moved traffic at roughly 80% of line rate, overall, or about 8G bit/sec.

Avaya representatives onsite for testing said their devices are limited by switch fabrics that topped out at 8G bit/sec, and that that's generally consistent with the frame rates these switches achieved.

In our 10 Gigabit backbone test, Avaya's Cajun trailed the pack, with throughput of less than 5G bit/sec in every test. Avaya attributes this to the Cajun's crossbar design, which becomes congested when utilization exceeds around 60% of its capacity. In this case, 60% of an 8G bit/sec switch fabric represents just about the levels we saw.

The good news for all vendors is that throughput over a 10 Gigabit backbone is significantly higher than the numbers we obtained in a previous test using link aggregation. In the worst case, we saw frame loss rise as high as 90% with link aggregation; here, even the worst-case number was nearly five times lower. Clearly, it's better to use a single physical pipe than a virtual one.

While the Avaya switch didn't top out at 10 Gigabits, it did have other features to its credit. In our jitter test, Ayava's Cajun P882 kept jitter down in the hundreds of nanoseconds, at least four orders of magnitude below the point where application performance would suffer.

And in our quality-of-service testing, Avaya was a top performer. Deciding which switch did the best job depends on which of the four rules that we employed is most important to your network. But if never dropping a high-priority frame is the most important criterion, then Avaya's Cajun came out on top.

For the full results, go to http://www.nwfusion.com/reviews/2003/020310gbe.html

Learn more about this topic

Avaya looks to reinvent itself

Network World, 11/11/02

10Gigabit standards okayed

Network World, 06/17/02

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on topics that are top of mind.
Related:
Take IDG’s 2020 IT Salary Survey: You’ll provide important data and have a chance to win $500.