QLogic CTO Rob Davis dropped by theCube to sit with SiliconANGLE Founder John Furrier and Wikibon Founder Dave Vellante at Oracle OpenWorld this week, and shared his opinion regarding the event, IO, virtualization and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison’s opinion regarding the Ethernet.
Oracle provides their virtualization product to the enterprise level, which brought them in direct competition with VMware. From the IO perspective, QLogic has designed their product around virtualization to be generic so they’ll work with any virtual operating system platform, be it Oracle or VMware’s.
QLogic sees the consolidation of IO technologies around the three basic technologies: Ethernet, InfiniBand and Fibre Channel. When asked to comment on Ellison’s trashing of the Ethernet and the performance equation in today’s marketplace, Davis stated that,
“In Oracle’s perspective, their big on InfiniBands and from a performance perspective, Infiniband comes out of the HPC market. So if you try to compare Ethernet to InfiniBand in a raw performance perspective, InfiniBand wins. But Ethernet, from a market share perspective, it’s huge and pervasive. You can use InfiniBand’s high performance system in a way that are enclosed around an application like Oracle does but if you’re going to connect to the rest of the world, you’re going to have an Ethernet plan.”
QLogic is designed to deliver high performance IO to all the different approaches, mixing Ethernet, InfiniBand and Fibre Channel in their product. OEM customers are trying to get more solutions and more stacks into their product lines. Before, you go to Cisco for networking, EMC for storage, IBM, Dell, HP for servers but now, they’re trying to put those together in one stack and wrap a certain technology around it, like InfiniBand for Oracle. But for QLogic, what’s important for them is to provide the technology choice of their OEM.
QLogic provide the hooks, dials and meters for their OEM customers to integrate their management. For Oracle, QLogic have special registers in their adaptors for their virtual operating system that provide the functionality needed for moving the VMs across two different platforms or for tuning the performance around a particular VMs or requirements.
End-users are looking for someone who can provide networking, storage, servers and operating system service in one bundle to eliminate the need to go to different companies that offers these services separately and QLogic sees that this is what Oracle is doing.
QLogic is spending a lot time trying to differentiate their OEM’s virtual product line with others which basically means customizing their products based on the needs of each OEM.
As for QLogic’s future, Davis said that, “We are an arms supplier to the OEM side. They want Fibre Channel technology? We have it. They want Ethernet technology? We have it. They want InfiniBand technology? We have it. Our approach is to make sure we’re designing products today for an intercept point for them in two or three-year timeframe. ‘Coz that’s the time it takes for A6 to be developed and debugged.”
When asked whether they’re a data center technology supplier, Davis added that, “We see ourselves as a supplier to the companies that go to the data center. We don’t go direct, we go through OEMs.”