FastFrame™ NICs Cover Your Need for Speed

Last month ATTO released our third generation of FastFrame™ Ethernet network interface cards. FastFrame 3 supports the 25/50/100 Ethernet standard which means our product line now covers the full spectrum of high speed Ethernet from 10Gb/s to 100Gb/s. You can be sure all of our FastFrame products provide unmatched performance, industry lowest latency and the versatility needed for the most demanding and complex ecosystems.

The concept of combining four lanes of 10GbE with RDMA to reduce overhead and achieve unheard of network speeds was formalized in 2014 with the 40GbE standard. Almost immediately afterward the industry began working on 25/50/100 standards, driven by the rise in cloud computing and the scale-out of data centers.

A consortium was started and, with a little help from new SerDes chips, the lanes were increased to 25GbE and kept backward compatible with 10GbE and 40GbE. A principle advantage of this new standard is that it works with existing cabling; that’s a 2.5x increase in performance by just swapping adapters.

We now have the ability to stretch across the data center and scale-out easily while keeping costs under control. ATTO FastFrame 3 NICs are able to negotiate speeds from general purpose 25GbE all the way up to 100GbE core fabric applications.

The speed choices and standards means there are several optical transceiver and integrated cable options to maneuver. The following guide will help to navigate the world of high speed Ethernet traffic:

  • SFP+ - This is the first transceiver introduced for Ethernet and is made for 10GbE traffic only.
  • QSFP+ - This is the transceiver introduced for the 40GbE standard and can be used on our second generation 40GbE NICs. They can also be used on our latest FastFrame 3 cards to operate at 40Gb/s speeds.
  • SFP28 – This is the transceiver used to operate at 25Gb/s, it’s an upgrade of the SFP+ and shares the same form factor.
  • QSFP28 – This was introduced to handle the new 25/50/100 standard and can be used with our FastFrame 3 NICs to negotiate 50/100Gb/s speeds. It shares the same form factor as the QSFP+.
  • Passive Copper – This cabling option is recommended for short distances; typically up and down the rack. They are made of high gauge copper cable.
  • Active Optical – This is a standard MPO fiber cable option and is recommended for traveling long distances.
Read more about ATTO at our Article Archive