All posts by Motti Beck

About Motti Beck

Motti Beck is Sr. Director Enterprise Market Development at Mellanox Technologies Inc. Before joining Mellanox Motti was a founder of BindKey Technologies an EDC startup that provided deep submicron semiconductors verification solutions and was acquired by DuPont Photomask and Butterfly Communications a pioneering startup provider of Bluetooth solutions that was acquired by Texas Instrument. Prior to that, he was a Business Unit Director at National Semiconductors. Motti hold B.Sc in computer engineering from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. Follow Motti on Twitter: @MottiBeck

Higher Quality Video Requires Ethernet Video Fabric

The adoption of 4K and soon 8K video formats and the transition from Serial Digital Interface (SDI) to IP-based broadcasting drive the need for efficient, higher performance networking technologies that can stream more bits per second in real-time. This is why you should consider using Mellanox’s Ethernet Video Fabric with emerging Ethernet speeds of 25, 50, and 100Gb/s and advanced offload technologies which accelerate data communication for servers and storage.

Come by the Mellanox booth E21 Hall 8 at IBC, September 13-17, 2019, in RAI Amsterdam and find out about the breakthrough technologies Mellanox is working on that enable SMPTE 2110 certified Video over IP solutions today.

Stop by to learn:

  • How our IP based networking virtualized solutions enable users to address the performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation.
  • How Rivermax™, our optimized software library for video streaming applications, enable you to deliver an IP-based solutions, which are compliance with SMPTE 2110, while reducing CPU utilization and maximizing throughput for video data streaming.
  • How joint solutions with our Media & Entertainment partners can help you to build the most efficient IP based Media data centers that meet your business needs.

Live Demos in our booth:

In our booth we will demonstrate live, a SMPTE 2110 high throughput video stream solution, running over Mellanox Rivermax™ a video streaming library for media and entertainment, ConnectX®-5 100GbE NIC and NVIDIA® Jetson AGX Xavier™. Please just come every day at 11:00AM and join us for a live demo in our booth.

Visit our booth to see, how Rivermax enables the Transmit and Receive of uncompressed video streams 3840x2160p50 +  3  X 1920×1080@50p (Total of ~15Gbps).  It will also be a good opportunity to meet our R&D Experts.

Visit Mellanox at IBC for a look at our broadcasting and post-production solutions

While visiting our booth, don’t miss our new cloud solution for M&E that enables you to run Rivermax over OpenStack. A video of the solution can be found here and for a deeper-dive please read our reference design guide.

Presentations at the Show:

  • Presentation Title:Simplifying JT-NM TR-1001-1 Deployments through Microservices
    Speaker: Richard Hastie, Senior Director, M&E Business Development

         When: Sunday, Sept 15 at 3:00 pm

         Location: IP Showcase Theater located in Room E106/E107 at the RAI Amsterdam

  • Presentation Title:Avoiding Traps and Pitfalls When Designing SMPTE 2059-2 PTP Networks
    Speaker: Thomas Kernen, Staff Architect, Mellanox Technologies

        When: Sunday, Sept 15 at 10:00AM

        Location: IP Showcase Theater located in Room E106/E107 at the RAI Amsterdam

  • Presentation Title:PTP in Media Virtualized Environment
    Speaker: Alex Wainman, Sr. Staff Engineer SW

         When: Sunday, Sept 15 at 10:30AM

        Location: IP Showcase Theater located in Room E106/E107 at the RAI Amsterdam

At the Expo – Partner Demos & Partner Events

  • Mellanox E21

Stop by to learn how our Ethernet Video Fabrics (EVF) solutions enable users to address performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation. Also learn about the significant benefits that Rivermax™, our optimized software library for video streaming applications, enable you to deliver an IP-based solutions, which are compliance with SMPTE 2110, while reducing CPU utilization and maximizing throughput for video data streaming.

  • AVID B55

Avid delivers the most open and efficient media platform, connecting content creation with collaboration, asset protection, distribution and consumption, leveraging IP connectivity with the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.

  • Coralbay.tv 5.B48

At IBC 2019 the company will be showcasing coralPlay, a next generation playout product, which provides an automation control interface as well as a video pipeline, delivering video and audio in a variety of output formats.

  • Dejero 11.C15

Demonstration of WayPoint 204, which allows for automation and virtualization of IP-based media workflows over Mellanox’s Rivermax & ConnectX-5 Adapter

  •  Elements  7.D08

NVMe All Flash Array (AFA) storage with 100GbE RDMA connectivity, delivering performance beyond belief, with incredible high-bandwidths, zero latencies and more than double the throughput – a huge benefit for all media workflows.”

  • Embrionix B37

Embrionix will demonstrate its 4K/UHD IP solutions for broadcast environments including solutions with Mellanox IP networking technologies.

  • Grass Valley A01

Grass Valley will demonstrate the new Rivermax™ Windows Tx and ConnectX®-5 adapters for video acceleration, delivering 8K UHD, 60 FPS with 1 CPU core.

  • Harmonic B20

Virtualized Spectrum X –  SD to UHD Ingest and playout for production and playout workflows using SMPTE ST 2110 with Mellanox Rivermax™ and ConnectX-5 adapter.

  • Image Matters D31

Demonstration of uncompressed video transport demonstration over IP (SMPTE ST2110 and ST2059), in 25Gbps, using Mellanox’s Spectrum™ Ethernet switch

  • Mediaproxy B44

Demonstration of unified software solutions for 24/7 monitoring, analysis, multiviewing and capture of live video from broadcast and OTT sources running over Rivermax and ConnectX-5 adapter

  •  Nevion B79

As architects of virtualized production, Nevion focuses on building solutions that leverage IP, IT and cloud technology to dramatically improve time-to-production and cost-effectiveness. Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, and ConnectX®-5 adapters.

  • PHABRIX B12

The PHABRIX product portfolio includes the Qx range for hybrid IP, 4K/UHD, and HDR/WCG signal generation, analysis, and video/audio monitoring and the rackmount Rx range for fast intermittent fault diagnosis in 3G/HD-SDI environments and the Sx range for applications demanding ultra-portable instruments.

  • PixelPower A05 (a Rhode & Schwarz company)

At IBC’19, PixelPower will demonstrate StreamMaster running over Mellanox’s Rivermax and ConnectX-5 adapter. StreamMaster is a virtualized software application for channel playout of linear, OTT or Video On Demand television channels that integrates video server, master control switcher, graphics and metadata processing. StreamMaster enables multiple products and solutions to be enabled through a virtualized technology platform for software defined media processing due its modular and extensible architecture that supports SDI, IP and future standards.

  •  Pixit Media D69

Demo of PixStor High-Performance Storage for Secure Collaborative Workflows

with Mellanox’s Ethernt Video Fabric (EVF) solutions using Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, ConnectX®-5 adapters and LinkX® cables.

  •  Qumulo A15

The Qumulo IBC live demo will feature a Mellanox Ethernet storage Fabric solution with Qumulo’s universal-scale file M&E storage for high performance, unstructured data workloads.

  • Ross Video C10

Ross Video has partnered with Mellanox to provide a virtualized edition of the XPression Studio and XPression Clips software., Having Mellanox as part of an accepted technology stack in data centers makes them an obvious choice for our customers moving from traditional bare metal to the virtualization models of the future. At IBC 2019, Ross Video will be presenting a technology demo of XPression in a virtualized environment, utilizing Mellanox ConnectX-5 + Rivermax to support SMPTE ST-2110 over a generic NIC

  •  TAG V.S. F94

TAG V.S. specializes in innovative IP monitoring & high quality UHD Multiviewer solutions which are IP based and run on standard and mobile devices displays.

  • Telestream/Tektronix C16 & 7.C14

Media Monitoring and Analysis of 2110 and 2022-6/7 Video Networks using Mellanox Rivermax and ConnectX-5 adapter.

  • Zero Density C49

Zero Density is an international technology company dedicated to developing creative products for the industries such as broadcasting, augmented reality, live events and e-sports. At the show, Zero Density will demo their Reality Virtual Studio their real-time 3D Virtual Studio and Augmented Reality platform over Mellanox’s Rivermax and ConnectX-5.

For more information on Mellanox’s IP technology for broadcasting and postproduction solutions visit Media and Entertainment Solutions page

IBC 2019 website: https://show.ibc.org/

 

 

 

True Record Setting Hyperconverged Performance

We’re living at a fascinating point in time for data center development. Modern data centers continue to evolve from physical to virtual, cloud infrastructure expand from public, private and into hybrid deployments and we are witnessing a shift from spinning storage media to an age of Flash. Moreover, new types of compute platforms allowing for a more open data center models are ushering in an era of commodity architecture which is making its way into the cloud providers, service providers, and even enterprise data centers.

Hyperconvergence is one of the models that is adopting this architectural shift. Moving away from proprietary and expensive storage arrays to open standard compute & storage architectures built around off-the-shelf commodity servers. Organizations can now utilize commodity architecture to implement the latest hyperconverged solutions that can compete with large storage arrays without breaking the bank.

However, are these solutions capable of keeping up with the performance of typical storage platforms? Yes, in fact, Microsoft recently set a performance record showcasing its latest Storage Spaces Direct (S2D) edition in Windows Server 2019 in a hyperconverged solution that demonstrated an impressive 13.7M IOPs.

Stand Up to the Challenge

Noticing the performance gap between Microsoft’s IOPs record and the maximum raw IOPS in the setup that was used, StarWind reached out to us, Mellanox, offering to collaborate on building a high-performance cluster that could go beyond any IOPS record ever reported. StarWind has been developing unique core competencies to maximize the performance out of Windows Server, using their StarWind iSCSI Accelerator – a driver that allowed for better workload distribution in Hyper-V environments. By utilizing their accelerator, all CPU cores can be effectively utilized, leaving no cores idle while not overwhelming others. While Mellanox, known for blazing-fast networking, would provide the adapters, switching, and cables for the interconnects and networking. We too know something about performance having pioneered Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) and NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF), which are game-changers when it comes to storage performance. Our networking gear provides exceptionally high data transfer rates at the lowest possible latency, with offloads and accelerators to free CPU cycles for storage computational tasks.

For this benchmark are goal was to set a new performance record. StarWind provided the shared storage capacity, married with the best of breed hardware vendors including servers from Supermicro, NVMe Flash drives from Intel, and Microsoft Hyper-V for the hypervisor. The collaboration was an ambitious project as the goal was to provide a high-performance highly-available (HA) cluster capable of delivering raw IOPS with latency comparable to local NVMe device of 10ms or less.

Setting the HCI Industry IOPS Record

The StarWind team built a similar cluster to that used  by Microsoft earlier to set their world record. This time packing it with NVMe drives and benchmarking performance in three scenarios. While the testbed setups were slightly different, they all basically shared most of the hardware and interconnection scheme but used very distinct software components and settings.

For the very first test, iSCSI / iSER cache-less all-flash hyper-converged cluster was built as a traditional 2-node StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) but “on steroids” as it was scaled out to a whopping 12 nodes. Each node utilized a Supermicro SuperServer 2029UZ-TR4+ with dual Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8268 processors, two Intel® Optane™ SSD DC P4800X NVMe Flash drives, and two Mellanox ConnectX-5 100 GbE NICs, all connected by a Mellanox SN2700 Spectrum™ switch and Mellanox LinkX® copper cables. Virtual machines were tested running directly from the NVMe flash drives, pooled by StarWind VSAN and chopped into virtual volumes. This test was meant to determine I/O latency, so no cache was used

During our second run, the same hardware and software setup from above was used, but the cluster was configured to run workloads on comparably slower M.2 SATA flash drives. Double the amount of Intel Optane cards were used exclusively for write-back cache as we were reaching for both maximum IOPS and bandwidth with this test.

For the final test, we utilize the same Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) cluster, except we scrapped iSCSI / iSER and replaced it with the SPDK NVMe-oF target and the StarWind NVMe-oF initiator, to prove we could obtain even better performance than we had before. To summarize, Intel Optane, NVMe-oF, no cache, the shortest possible I/O path, and Windows. The primary purpose was to demonstrate how efficient the StarWind NVMe-oF initiator is at presenting PCIe flash.

Test interconnection and hardware diagram of StarWind Hyperconverged Applicance

Test interconnection and hardware diagram

A Look at the Results

In virtualization and hyper-converged infrastructures, it’s common to judge performance based on the number of input/output (I/O) operations per second, or “IOPs.” Primarily the number of reads or writes that virtual machines can perform. A single VM can generate a considerable number of either random or sequential reads/writes. In real production environments, there usually are loads of VMs, and that makes the data flow fully randomized. 4K block I/O is the block size that Hyper-V virtual machines use and was how we configured our I/O patterns within the benchmark.

Test results for each of the 12-node StarWind HCA clusters are below.

The first test utilized the cache-less 12-node HCA cluster and delivered 6.7 million IOPS, 51% out of theoretical 13.2 million IOPS. This breakthrough performance in a simple production configuration (client access using iSCSI without RDMA). The backbone was running over iSER and used no proprietary technology. Similar performance results can be obtained with many hypervisors using pure iSCSI initiators, a StarWind Virtual SAN and Mellanox interconnects.

For the second test, we used a production configuration utilizing StarWind’s Virtual SAN for shared storage write-back cache running over iSER and using iSCSI without RDMA for client access. In our environment, no proprietary technologies were used, meaning that similar performance can be obtained with any hypervisor using iSCSI initiators, StarWind Virtual SAN, and Intel Optane configured as caching device and Mellanox interconnects.

For the final test, the achieved breakthrough performance was obtained by configuring NVMe-oF on the cluster. The fastest NVMe storage is the passthrough to SPDK NVMe target VM, and StarWind NVMe-oF storage initiator interconnection and Mellanox NVMe-oF ready adapters and Switches.

Summary

This groundbreaking demo reflects the collaboration of industry-leading companies, featuring production-ready StarWind Hyper-Converged Appliance (HCA), built with the newest SuperMicro motherboards, the most recent Intel CPUs & NVMe flash memory, all over a Mellanox end-to-end RDMA enabled network. This benchmark exposes the true performance capabilities of a Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI). The 12-node all-flash NVMe cluster delivered 26.834 million IOPS, 101.5% performance out of theoretical 26.4 million IOPS. Similar production-ready environments can easily be built today with commodity components that are more than capable of delivering enterprise-class performance without the cost, risk, or complexity. More than enough IOPS to enable today’s enterprises to meet the growing demands of the data explosion. Exciting times we live in, indeed!

Exadata Continues its Successful Journey over InfiniBand

On September 2008 at Oracle Open World, Larry Ellison announced Oracle’s first Database appliance that enables 10X to 100X speedup for data warehousing (at that time HP servers have been used). In his presentation Larry mentioned that Exadata runs over InfiniBand and emphasized the competitive advantages it enables, by saying “everybody runs over 10Gb/s Ethernet, we are running over InfiniBand, 40Gb/s InfiniBand”.

About a year later, on Q4’09 2009 at Oracle earning call, Larry said “Exadata terns to be to most exciting and successful new product introduction in Oracle’s 30 years history… It can run about 100 times faster in some cases than standard Oracle environment”.

Exadata X8 Hardware (changes in red)

Exadata X8 hardware

Since that day and for the last 10 years, Oracle continues to add new features and capabilities and recently mentioned that “in fiscal year 2018, Exadata set all-time product sales records with continued adoption across multiple workloads such as OLTP, Analytics, and IoT, and multiple verticals, including finance, retail, electronics, and telecommunications” (source: Oracle Press Release).

On June 12th, 2019, Oracle introduced the new Exadata Database Machines the X8-2 & the X8-8 and described them as “The Foundation for Mission Critical On-Premises, Cloud, and Autonomous Databases”. Those two new appliances continue to run over InfiniBand, which enable data communication over RDMA, accelerating access to persistent memory by 20X.

Mellanox announced HDR 200G InifniBand technology at SC18.

Mellanox announced HDR 200G InifniBand technology at SC18.

Up to now, all Exadata appliances have been running only over InfiniBand QDR (40Gb/s) technology, so it will be interesting to see the performance boost that Exadata will gain if it will run over Mellanox’s newest HDR (200Gb/s) technology that has been deployed already in the market and maybe even add the Nvidia GPUs to the cluster.

 

: Mellanox Rivermax™ broadcasting and post production solutions

Mellanox Ethernet Video Fabric at NAB 2019

The adoption of 4K and soon 8K video formats and the transition from Serial Digital Interface (SDI) to IP-based broadcasting drive the need for efficient, higher performance networking technologies that can stream more bits per second in real-time. This is why you should consider using Mellanox’s Ethernet Video Fabrics with the emerging Ethernet speeds of 25, 50, and 100GbE with advanced offload technologies that accelerate data communication for servers and storage in your new video data centers.

Come by the Mellanox booth (SL6025) at NAB, April 8-11, 2019, in the Las Vegas Convention Center South Hall and find out about the breakthrough technologies Mellanox is working on that enable tomorrow’s virtualized IP based workflows today.

Stop by to learn:

  • How our IP based networking virtualized solutions enable users to address the performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation.
  • How Rivermax™, our networking orchestration and management software, delivers virtualized IP-based solutions that enable compliance with SMPTE 2110, while reducing CPU utilization and maximizing throughput for video data streaming.
    • How joint solutions with our Media & Entertainment partners can help you to build the most efficient IP based Media data centers that meet your business needs.

Live Demo in our booth:

In our booth we will demonstrate Rivermax™ our video streaming library for media and entertainment, smart cities and content delivery networks (CDNs) playout SMPTE2110 video streams over vSphere based virtualized solution. It will also be a good opportunity to meet our R&D Experts.

 

Visit Mellanox at NAB for a look at our broadcasting and post-production solutions

Mellanox Rivermax @ NAB2019 Sneak Peek, can be found on YouTube , or easier, just join us for a live demo in our booth – demoing our Rivermax Virtualized Video over IP on:

  • Monday– 3pm
  • Tuesday– 10 am
  • Wednesday– 10 am
  • Thursday– 10 am

Please don’t miss our presentations at the NAB conference and visit us in the IP Showcase and in the Expo. Below is a list of our activities.

Presentation at the Show:

         Speaker: Thomas Kernen, Staff Architect, Mellanox Technologies

          When: Sunday, April 7 • 1:30 PM – 2:50 PM

Location: N260 – E

Demo at the IP Showcase Pavilion:             

The IP Showcase features a full schedule of must-see IP education sessions, live demonstrations (including the Rivermax, Spectrum™ SN2010 switch and ConnectX®-5 Ethernet NIC) and the latest interoperability developments.

At the Expo – Partner Demos & Partner Events

Mellanox             SL6025

Stop by to learn how our Ethernet Video Fabrics (EVF) solutions enable users to address performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation. Also learn about the significant benefits that Mellanox RiverMax™, our networking orchestration and management software, delivers.

Artel Video Systems SU8107

Artel Video Systems provides innovative, real-time, multimedia delivery solutions serving global markets. Artel’s is a trusted partner in the development of reliable, standards-based, IP infrastructures and will demo the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.

AVID SU801

Avid delivers the most open and efficient media platform, connecting content creation with collaboration, asset protection, distribution and consumption, leveraging IP connectivity with the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.

CISCO SU8510

Demo of Cisco® Media Data Center over Mellanox’s Rivermax and ConnectX-5, which enables content providers and broadcasters to migrate from legacy SDI to a flexible and scalable IP-based infrastructure to meet the evolving demand for more content and rich media experiences, including more camera feeds, higher resolutions with 4K and 8K video, and virtual reality capabilities.

CORALBAY.TV N2633

Demonstration of CoralPlay, a next generation playout product, over 2110 playout and graphics pre-rendering using After Effects, using Mellanox’s Rivermax over ConnectX-5

Elements                     SL11510

NVMe All Flash Array (AFA) storage with 100GbE RDMA connectivity, delivering performance beyond belief, with incredible high-bandwidths, zero latencies and more than double the throughput – a huge benefit for all media workflows.”

Embrionix N2508

Embrionix will demonstrate its 4K/UHD IP solutions for broadcast environments including solutions with Mellanox IP networking technologies.

Emergent C5640

Two demos using Rivermax & ConnectX-5: HB-50000C 50MegaPixel (8K), 30fps, 25GigE camera and HB-30000C 30MegaPixel (6K), 35fps, 25GigE camera

Excelero SL5724

The Excelero demos will feature the “Any-K video storage for media workflows” use case, which enables customers to build future proof post production infrastructure, optimized for 4K video and ready for 8K and 16K.

Grass Valley SL106

Grass Valley will demonstrate the new Rivermax™ and ConnectX®-5 adapters for video acceleration, delivering 8K UHD, 60 FPS with 1 CPU core. In addition, the VMA Linux Multi-Viewer will be shown with ConnectX®-5 adapters.

Mediaproxy

Demonstration of Mediaproxy, a unified software solution for 24/7 compliance logging and monitoring, analysis, multiviewing and capture of live video from broadcast and OTT sources, now compliant with current broadcast and IP streaming regulations and running over ConnectX-5 to support all current industry standards for closed captioning, DVB Subtitling, SCTE-35 (Type 5 and 6), SCTE-104 and loudness (A/85 and R128 1770-4).

Nevion SU5510

As architects of virtualized production, Nevion focuses on building solutions that leverage IP, IT and cloud technology to dramatically improve time-to-production and cost-effectiveness. Demo highlights: Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, VMA Linux Sender support, and ConnectX®-5 adapters.

PHABRIX N4508

The PHABRIX product portfolio includes the Qx range for hybrid IP, 4K/UHD, and HDR/WCG signal generation, analysis, and video/audio monitoring and the rackmount Rx range for fast intermittent fault diagnosis in 3G/HD-SDI environments and the Sx range for applications demanding ultra-portable instruments.

Pixit Media SL5724

Demo of high end 8K playback multiple workstations using PixStor and Excelero storage with NVMe-oF over Mellanox’s EVF using Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, ConnectX®-5 adapters and LinkX® cables.

Qumulo SL12111

The Qumulo NAB live demo will feature a Mellanox Ethernet storage switch and ConnectX-4/5 NIC with Qumulo’s universal-scale file storage for high performance, unstructured data workloads.

Reeldata  SL10830

Visit the Reeldata booth for a demonstration of the superior performance of the Rozo Systems software-defined NAS solution when running on a cluster of commodity servers equipped with Mellanox’s ConnectX NICs and connected by Mellanox’s Spectrum switch.

Rozo Systems   SL10830

Visit the Reeldata booth for a demonstration of the superior performance of the Rozo Systems software-defined NAS solution when running on a cluster of commodity servers equipped with Mellanox’s ConnectX NICs and connected by Mellanox’s Spectrum switch.

ROSS Video SL1805

On the Ross Video booth at NAB, John Naylor will be presenting a Technology Demo featuring the virtualization of the XPression real-time motion graphics engine and outputting in the SMPTE ST 2110 IP video format. The real-time 3D rendering of the virtualized XPression will utilize an NVIDIA GRID GPU for real-time rendering and then leverage the Mellanox CX5 tools from the Rivermax SDK to output uncompressed SMPTE ST 2110. The final output will be presented to observers using a Ross Video Newt IP gateway which will composite the SMPTE ST 2110 feed of video and key signals over a third SMPTE ST 2110 signal using a Ross Video Raptor and then a Ross Video NEWT IP Gateway which will convert the 2110 signal to NDMI for display on a local monitor.

.

TAG V.S. SU6521

TAG V.S. specializes in innovative IP monitoring & high quality UHD Multiviewer solutions which are IP based and run on standard and mobile devices displays. TAG V.S. solutions run over Mellanox ConnectX-5 10, 25, 40, 50 & 100GbE that has been qualified by the company.

For more information on Mellanox’s IP technology for broadcasting and post production solutions visit Media and Entertainment Solutions page

Why Oracle Deployed RoCE Network to serve AI & HPC workloads in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI)

As the world continues to march forward with its digital transformation journey, a growing amount of data is becoming available for enterprises to make more accurate business decisions. Organizations must now change their traditional thinking to develop “digital thinking” skills for their decision process. Not having such capabilities will put companies at a disadvantage versus competitors. Any DevOps decisions need to be based on a pure analysis of relevant data, this will help remove traditional silos, improve the communication between different teams within organizations and thus boost corporate efficiency.

This trend hasn’t been hidden from the Enterprises decision makers that have already started to build and use AI/ML solutions. These solutions not only include CPUs but also other high-performance components, like GPUs, faster All Flash Array (AFA) storage that utilize NVMe or Persistent Memory (PM), which are all connected by high performance networking gear required to handle the massive data communication within the AI/ML clusters. Faster data communication results in faster analytics and a company that is first to make the right decision, gains a competitive edge over its competitors. This is very similar to companies that run High Frequency Trading (HFT) where every nanosecond counts and clusters are connected by the fastest networking technology – in these environments the analytic cluster is located very close to the stock exchange data, even within the same building, to minimize the delay that optical cables inject.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Presentation at OOW’18 shows the RDMA cluster networking in their cloud network

Figure 1: Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Presentation at OOW’18

 

In addition to building the AI/ML or HPC clusters, enterprises must also embrace a Hybrid strategy to enable higher scalability and higher efficiency. Oracle just released their services to run over clusters connected by RoCE v2. RoCE v2 is a RDMA over converged Ethernet networking technology that removes the CPU from direct data communication between nodes and storage to increase efficiencies (for a brief description of RoCE advantages see: RoCE with Mellanox).

RDMA technology isn’t new to Oracle and was actually used in Oracle’s Exadata (and in other solutions, like Big Data as an example) that used RDMA enabled InfiniBand networks to achieve record setting performance. Having already proven RDMA’s performance, the decision to use RoCE in their high-performance clusters was an easy one.

Oracle’s benchmark results of high-performance (HPC) workloads running over their RDMA enabled network clusters

Figure 2: HPC workload over Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) presented at OOW’18

 

Oracle’s benchmark results of high-performance (HPC) workloads running over their RDMA enabled network clusters compares them to other cloud solutions and demonstrates the competitive advantages that RoCE enables.

The approach of using AI/ML based applications to develop “digital thinking” skills is just getting started and much more is expected to be developed soon. From this we’ll see new, real-time user interface solutions that are based on voice and video. Like the situation we are seeing to address AI/ML, these too will require faster response times, which RDMA-enabled networks will be best positioned to address.

We’re excited to work with Oracle to further develop these technologies and are excited to collaborate on their current Clustered Network offering.

 

Mellanox is showing Ethernet Video Fabrics solutions for 4K and 8K video at IBC 2018

Ethernet Video Fabric Accelerates 4K and 8K Video, Replacing SDI

The adoption of 4K video and soon 8K video formats and the transition from Serial Digital Interface (SDI) to IP-based broadcasting drive the need for efficient, higher performance networking technologies that can stream more bits per second in real-time. This is why you should consider using Mellanox’s Ethernet Video Fabrics with the emerging Ethernet speeds of 25, 50, and 100GbE with advanced offload technologies that accelerate data communication for servers and storage in your new video data centers.

Join us at IBC, where we’ll join our partners to demonstrate a wide variety of solutions based on our IP technology for broadcasting and postproduction solutions that address the high bandwidth requirement driven by the adoption of 4K UHD and 8K UHD video formats and from the demanding new standards, such as the SMPTE 2110-21 specification for packet pacing, which addresses both the switch and receiver constraints.

In our booth we will demonstrate Rivermax™ our video streaming library for media and entertainment, smart cities and content delivery networks (CDNs) playout SMPTE2110 video streams on Windows 10 (desktop) – you can see a sneak peek on YouTube.

Rivermax, our video streaming library, offers an IP-based broadcasting solution alternative to SDI.

Please don’t miss our presentations at the IBC conference and visit us in the IP Showcase and in the Expo. Below is a complete list of our activities.

 

Sessions

Title: Demystifying troubleshooting PTP Synchronised Media Fabrics

  • Speaker: Thomas Kernen, Staff Architect, Mellanox Technologies
  • When: Friday, September 14th at 4:00PM
  • Where: IP Showcase Theatre located in the RAI Amsterdam in Room E106/107

Title: Timed Switch Implementation over Programmable Hybrid Pipeline

  • Speaker: Aviad Raveh, VP Business Development Technology  Mellanox Technologies
  • When: Sunday, September 16th at 2:00PM
  • Where: IP Showcase Theatre located in the RAI Amsterdam in Room E106/107

 

Title: ST 2110 Software Based Solutions – Making the Transition

  • Speaker: Nir Nitzani, Sr. Director, SW R&D Mellanox Technologies
  • When: Monday, September 17th at 11:30AM
  • Where: IP Showcase Theatre located in the RAI Amsterdam in Room E106/107

 

Title: Simplifying the use of AMWA IS-04 through Dematerialized Micro-Services

  • Speaker: Richard Hastie, Sr. Director Business Development Mellanox Technologies.
  • When: Monday, September 17th at 3:00PM
  • Where: IP Showcase Theatre located in the RAI Amsterdam in Room E106/107

IP Showcase

The IP Showcase features a full schedule of must-see IP video education sessions, live demonstrations (including the Rivermax, Spectrum™ SN2010 switch and ConnectX®-5 Ethernet NIC) and the latest interoperability developments. Visit the showcase to learn more about alternatives to SDI for 4K and 8K video.

 

At the Expo – IP Video Partner Demos & Partner Events

Mellanox 8.E27

Stop by to learn how our Ethernet Video Fabrics (EVF) solutions enable users to address performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation using IP video networks. Also, learn about the significant benefits that Mellanox RiverMax™, our networking orchestration and management software, delivers.

 

Artel Video Systems 5.A65

Artel Video Systems provides innovative, real-time, multimedia delivery solutions serving global markets. Artel’s is a trusted partner in the development of reliable, standards-based, IP infrastructures and will demo the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.

 

AVID 7.B55 ; 1.C27

Avid delivers the most open and efficient media platform, connecting content creation with collaboration, asset protection, distribution and consumption, leveraging IP connectivity with the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.

 

BBC R&D 8.F08

Demo an efficient delivery of UHD services efficiently over IP using the Turing HEVC codec, multicast distribution to efficiently reach large audiences at scale, dynamic substitution of IP-delivered content into live broadcast services, and low latency internet distribution.

 

Elements 7.D08

NVMe All Flash Array (AFA) storage with 100GbE RDMA connectivity, delivering performance beyond belief, with incredible high-bandwidths, zero latencies and more than double the throughput – a huge benefit for all media workflows.”

 

Embrionix 8.B37

Embrionix will demonstrate its 4K/UHD IP solutions for broadcast environments including solutions with Mellanox IP networking technologies.

 

Excelero 5.B65 ; 7.B07 ; 7.D69  ; 7.D36 ; 7.A55

The Excelero demos will feature the “Any-K video storage for media workflows” use case, which enables customers to build future proof post production infrastructure, optimized for 4K video and ready for 8K and 16K.

 

Grass Valley 9.A01

Grass Valley will demonstrate the new Rivermax™ Windows Tx and ConnectX®-5 adapters for video acceleration, delivering 8K UHD, 60 FPS with 1 CPU core. In addition, the VMA Linux Multi-Viewer will be shown with ConnectX®-5 adapters.

Nevion 1.B71

As architects of virtualized production, Nevion focuses on building solutions that leverage IP, IT and cloud technology to dramatically improve time-to-production and cost-effectiveness. Demo highlights: Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, VMA Linux Sender support, and ConnectX®-5 adapters.

 

PHABRIX 10.B12

The PHABRIX product portfolio includes the Qx range for hybrid IP, 4K/UHD, and HDR/WCG signal generation, analysis, and video/audio monitoring and the rackmount Rx range for fast intermittent fault diagnosis in 3G/HD-SDI environments and the Sx range for applications demanding ultra-portable instruments.

 

Pixit Media 7.D69

Demo of high end 8K playback multiple workstations using PixStor and Excelero storage with NVMeoF over Mellanox’s EVF using Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, ConnectX®-5 adapters and LinkX® cables.

 

Qumulo 9.LP31 ; 15.MS45

The Qumulo NAB live demo will feature a Mellanox Ethernet storage switch with Qumulo’s universal-scale file storage for high performance, unstructured data workloads.

 

Rhode & Schwarz 7.B21

Rhode & Schwarz will demonstrate Mellanox VMA Linux Multi-viewer and ConnectX-5 adapters with PRISMON AV Content Monitoring Multiviewer Solutions.

 

TAG V.S. 1.F94

TAG V.S. specializes in innovative IP monitoring & high quality UHD Multiviewer solutions which are IP based and run on standard and mobile devices displays.

 

For more information on Mellanox’s IP technology for broadcasting and postproduction solutions visit Media and Entertainment Solutions page

Double Your Network File System (NFS) Performance with RDMA-Enabled Networking

Network File System (NFS) is a ubiquitous component of most modern clusters. It was originally designed as a work-group filesystem, making a central file store available to and shared among a number of client servers. Later, as NFS became more popular, mission-critical applications were running over NFS and high-speed access to storage became paramount, higher performance networking started to be used for the client-to-NFS communication. In addition to higher networking speeds (today 100GbE and soon 200GbE), the industry has been looking for technologies that offload stateless networking functions that run on the CPU to the IO subsystems. This leaves more CPU cycles free to run business applications and will maximize the data center efficiency.

One of the more popular networking offload technologies is RDMA (Remote Direct Memory Access). RDMA makes data transfers more efficient and enables fast data move­ment between servers and storage without involving the server’s CPU. Throughput is increased, latency reduced, and CPU power is freed up for the applications. RDMA technology is already widely used for efficient data transfer in render farms and in large cloud deployments such as Microsoft Azure, HPC solutions (including Machine/Deep learning), iSER and NVMe-oF based storage, mission critical SQL databases solutions such as Oracle’s RAC (Exadata), IBM DB2 pureScale, Microsoft SQL solutions and Teradata, as well as many others.

Figure 1: Data Communication over TCP vs RDMA

 

The figure above illustrates why IT managers have been deploying RoCE (RDMA over Converged Ethernet).  RoCE utilizes advances in Ethernet to enable more efficient implementations of RDMA over Ethernet and enables widespread deployment of RDMA technologies in mainstream data center applications.

The growing deployment of RDMA-enabled networking solutions in public and private clouds, like RoCE that enables ruining RDMA over Ethernet, plus the recent NFS protocol extensions, enable NFS communication over RoCE. (For more details, please watch the Open Source NFS/RDMA Roadmap presentation given at the OpenFabrics Workshop on March 2017 by Chuck Lever, upstream Linux contributor and a Linux Kernel Architect at Oracle.) For a detailed description on how to run NFS over RoCE, please read, How to Configure NFS over RDMA (RoCE) at the Mellanox community site.

In order to evaluate the boost that RoCE enables (vs. TCP), we ran a set of iozone tests and measured the read/write IOPS and throughput of multi-thread read or write tests at Mellanox. The tests were performed on a single client against a Linux NFS server using a tmpfs, so storage latencies are removed from the picture and transport behavior is clearly exposed.

The Client server included Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-3450S CPU @ 2.80GHz one socket, four cores, HT disabled 16GB RAM, 1333MHz DDR3, non-ECC HCA together with Mellanox’s ConnectX-5 100GbE NIC (SW version 16.20.1010) plugged into in a PCIe 3.0 x16 slot.

The NFS Server included Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-1620 v4 @ 3.50GHz one socket, four cores, HT disabled 64GB RAM, 2400MHz DDR4 HCA, together with Mellanox’s ConnectX-5 100GbE NIC (16.20.1010) plugged into in a PCIe 3.0 x16 slot.

The Client and the NFS Server were connected over a single 100GbE Mellanox LinkX® copper cable to Mellanox’s Spectrum™ switch using the SN2700 model with its 32 x 100GbE ports, which is the lowest latency Ethernet switch available in the market today, making it ideal for running latency sensitive applications over Ethernet .

Below are the bandwidth and the IOPS that were measured the performance over RoCE vs. TCP, running iozone tes

Figure 2: Running NFS over RoCE enables 2X to 3X higher bandwidth (using 128KB block size, read and write with 16 threads, aggregate throughput)

Figure 3: NFS over RoCE enables up to 140% higher IOPs (using 8KB block size, read and write with 16 threads, aggregate IOPs)

Figure 4: NFS over RoCE enables up to 150% higher IOPs (using 2KB block size, read and write with 16 threads, aggregate IOPs). The difference between the 2KB and 8KB tests is that each 2KB I/O fits entirely in a single RDMA Send, whereas each 8KB I/O conveys the data payload with an RDMA Read or Write.

Conclusion

Running NFS over RDMA-enabled networks, such as RoCE, which offload the CPU from performing the data communication job, generate a significant performance boost. As a result, Mellanox expects that NFS over RoCE will eventually replace NFS over TCP and become the leading transport technology in data centers.

 

Acknowledgement

Thanks to Chuck Lever for sharing his performance results and for his guidance.

 

Enabling Tomorrow’s Media Infrastructure Today!

The adoption of 4K and soon 8K video formats and the transition from Serial Digital Interface (SDI) to IP-based broadcasting drive the need for efficient, higher performance networking technologies that can stream more bits per second in real-time. This is why you should consider using the emerging Ethernet speeds of 25, 50, and 100GbE with advanced offload technologies that accelerate data communication for servers and storage in your new media data centers.

Join us at NAB, where we’ll join our partners to demonstrate a wide variety of solutions based on our IP technology for broadcasting and postproduction solutions that address the high bandwidth requirement derived by the adoption of 4K UHD and 8K UHD video formats and from the demanding new standards, such as the SMPTE 2110-21 specification for packet pacing, which addresses both the switch and receiver constraints.

Please don’t miss our presentations at the NAB conference and visit us in the IP Showcase and in the Expo. Below is a complete list of our activities.

For more information on Mellanox’s IP technology for broadcasting and postproduction solutions, visit the Media and Entertainment Solutions page.

Sessions N260

  • The Art of Conforming to SMPTE ST 2110-21 Traffic Model
    Speaker: Thomas Kernen, Staff Architect, Mellanox Technologies
    Co-authored with the European Broadcasting Union
    https://nab18.mapyourshow.com/7_0/sessions/session-details.cfm?ScheduleID=59
    Saturday April 7th, 9:00 – 10:20AM North Hall – N260

IP Showcase C12634

The IP Showcase features a full schedule of must-see IP education sessions, live demonstrations (including the Spectrum™ SN2410 switch), and the latest interoperability developments.

 

At the Expo – Partner Demos & Partner Events

  • Embrionix          N4111
    Embrionix will demonstrate its 4K/UHD IP solutions for broadcast environments including solutions with Mellanox IP networking technologies.
  • AVID          SU801
    Avid delivers the most open and efficient media platform, connecting content creation with collaboration, asset protection, distribution and consumption, leveraging IP connectivity with the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.
  • Artel Video Systems         SU6102
    Artel Video Systems provides innovative, real-time, multimedia delivery solutions serving global markets. Artel’s is a trusted partner in the development of reliable, standards-based, IP infrastructures and will demo the Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch.
  • Mellanox         SL14809
    Stop by to learn how our IP based networking solutions enable users to address performance bottlenecks and unleash innovation. Also learn about the significant benefits that Mellanox RiverMax™, our networking orchestration and management software, delivers.
  • Excelero
    The Excelero demos will feature the “Any-K video storage for media workflows” use case, which enables customers to build future proof post production infrastructure, optimized for 4K video and ready for 8K and 16K.
         Intel Corp.         SU3110
         Quantum Corp.         SL8511
         Pixit Media SL6124
  • Emergent Vision Technologies          C9732
    Emergent Vision Technologies and Mellanox have partnered to provide an optimal solution for Machine Vision applications. Mellanox supplies ConnextX-5 adapter cards pre-programmed with VMA direct from Emergent EVT 25 GigE Cameras.
  • Grass Valley         SL1805
    Grass Valley will demonstrate the new Rivermax™ Windows Tx and ConnectX-5 adapters for video acceleration, delivering 8K UHD, 60 FPS with 1 CPU core.
    In addition, the VMA Linux Multi-Viewer will be shown with ConnectX-5 adapters.
  • JB&A Pre-NAB Technology Event – April 7-8, 2018 at the SLS Hotel Las Vegas
    Join Mellanox at JB&A’s annual technology preview. Highlights will include hands-on demos with the latest and greatest technology, including Mellanox’s cost effective and powerful SN2100 Ethernet switch for speeds from 10GbE to 100GbE. Register at http://www.jbanda.com/events.
  • LumaForge          SL15816, SL16016
    The live booth demo will show Mellanox 100Gb SN2410 Ethernet switch technology with LumaForge shared storage appliances which enable creative professionals to collaborate and create content more efficiently.
  • Nevion AS         SU5510
    As architects of virtualized production, Nevion focuses on building solutions that leverage IP, IT and cloud technology to dramatically improve time-to-production and cost-effectiveness. Demo highlights: Mellanox Spectrum™ SN2100 switch, VMA Linux Sender support, and ConnectX-5 adapters.
  • OpenDrives          SL2424
    OpenDrives will participate in Waskul Entertainment’s state-of-the-art traveling broadcast studio and technology showcase with live 4K broadcasting from the NAB show.
  • OpenDrives Reception co-sponsored by MellanoxBy Invitation only.
    Monday, April 9, 2018.
  • PHABRIX         N4508
    The PHABRIX product portfolio includes the Qx range for hybrid IP, 4K/UHD, and HDR/WCG signal generation, analysis, and video/audio monitoring and the rackmount Rx range for fast intermittent fault diagnosis in 3G/HD-SDI environments and the Sx range for applications demanding ultra-portable instruments.
  • Pixit Media         SL6124
    Demo of high end 8K playback multiple workstations using PixStor, Mellanox and Excelero storage with NVMeoF.
  • Qumulo         SL10210
    The Qumulo NAB live demo will feature a Mellanox Ethernet storage switch with Qumulo’s universal-scale file storage for high performance, unstructured data workloads.
  • Rhode & Schwarz          SL6610
    Rhode & Schwarz will demonstrate Mellanox VMA Linux Multi-viewer and ConnectX-5 adapters with PRISMON AV Content Monitoring Multiviewer Solutions.
  • Rozo Systems           SL14905
    Visit the ReelData booth for a demonstration of the superior performance of the Rozo Systems software-defined NAS solution when running on a cluster of commodity servers equipped with Mellanox’s ConnectX NICs and connected by Mellanox’s Spectrum switch.
  • TAG V.S.         SU9510
    TAG V.S. specializes in innovative IP monitoring & high quality UHD Multiviewer solutions which are IP based and run on standard and mobile devices displays.

 

Game On! How Hyper-Converged Technology is Rocking the Gaming Industry

Not bad for an industry that’s only been around since 1972, the year that Atari introduced Pong to the arcades.

Gaming isn’t just for the quintessential gamers, stereotypical 20-somethings playing deep into the night; fueled by chips and grape soda. Gaming is a technology that also provides virtual reality for deep therapy, showing genuine promise to treat depression. The real estate industry benefits as well with virtual walk throughs of properties. Education uses virtual reality to immerse students entirely in a different world so imagine learning about previously boring old Rome by actually being there. With the advancements of gaming, comes a need for higher speeds and larger files requiring high performance networks. This is where Bilyoner chose Mellanox’s video post-production products.

Bilyoner is the first electronic gaming platform in Turkey and provides games of chance and sports with betting games through many available web devices to over 2.5 million members. Through its platform, members access gaming services and make swift online transactions. As online gaming evolves, Bilyoner is driving to offer its services as entertaining, innovative and reliable as possible to members at all times and at any place through all possible channels.

Predictably, as their business grew, Bilyoner’s previous data center could not cope with its growing customer base and services and the company was beset with frequent performance problems and component replacements caused service interruptions. In addition, servers and network equipment were out of warranty with expensive service agreements to be renewed.

 

To address these issues and improve data center efficiency, Bilyoner re-architected its data center opting for a hyper-converged solution integrated with Mellanox 10/40G Ethernet switches.

The hyper-converged architecture chosen allows compute, storage and virtualization on the same platform, thus completely removing the weakness of traditional SAN and greatly improving data center efficiency. High-performance networking is required for data movement between the hyper-converged nodes. In particular, higher network speed and reliable network connectivity are essential for virtual machines and containers to migrate among nodes for business continuity.

The solution they chose facilitated faster data transfer between nodes – a feature that is mission critical to the gaming world. The solution is also flexible as the 10/40G port configuration makes the Mellanox 10/40G switches (SX1410/SN2410) future proof for system upgrade. Finally, mindful as always of cost, the Mellanox solution provided Bilyoner with the best price/performance, low power consumption and ease of use which enabled the company to securely focus on innovation and providing their customers with new services and features.  And as everyone who games knows, downtime is not in the vocabulary. According to Aziz Sasmaz, Manager of Systems and Network Administration for Bilyoner:

 

“Our customers are playing online sports betting and national lottery, so our services

have to be fast, always up and running. Mellanox delivers faster and most reliable

networking to help us achieve our goals.”

 

So, as gaming pushes into new and exciting areas, Mellanox will be right there, enabling not only traditional gaming but virtual and augmented reality in the realm of education, business, medical and more. As augmented reality (a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world, thus providing a composite view) becomes ever more mainstream, more and more consumers will be able to virtually try on clothes and make-up, repair their own cars, move furniture around the home and even train like fighter pilots. Arm chair space travel anyone?

Supporting Resources:

Hybrid Cloud Becomes a Reality at Microsoft’s Inspire’17 with Azure Stack Systems

The continued growth in the amount of data (structured and unstructured) and the need to analyze it real time has become a must need core competency for leading enterprises. This market trend has accelerated the adoption of the Cloud by those Enterprises since it enables them to exploit the agility, flexibility, and simplicity that the Cloud provides as well as focus their attention on the data itself. This enables the Enterprises to achieve their goals economically.

Taking advantage of those Enterprises’ needs, the Cloud Service Provides (CSP) have been encouraging IT managers to move 100 percent of their infrastructure to the Cloud; providing incentives in the form of attractive services and pricing. A good example of this is a service for Enterprises that have a large amount of storage which can’t be sent to the CSP over the Internet. In this case, the CSP sends a truck and takes the physical hard disks ̶ and all for FREE! However, the main question that IT managers need to ask themselves is: “How much it will cost me to get the storage back?” (assuming of course, that the CSP even provides such a service).

The storage scenario, of course, is just one example of the risks that Enterprises can face if they decide not to have any on premise data center and to move all of their IT services to the Cloud. There are, of course, other legal and privacy issues that different companies may have to navigate, and this is why Hybrid Cloud approach provides the most appealing option because it enables complete interoperability and seamless operation between the Enterprises’ private Clouds to its CSP. Not having this is like driving down a one way street without the ability to turn around (and thus, the giving the CSPs more room to increase pricing).

Figure 1: Bringing Together the Best of All Worlds (Source: Gartner)

Although Hybrid Cloud architecture is not new, and in theory it looks simple, it has actually been very complicated to implement, and up to now, all the solutions that the CSPs have provided have not guaranteed seamless interoperability. There are various reasons that this has not yet happened. Some of them software related, i.e., the usage of the exact OS, hypervisor, the software stack and orchestration, and the other have been on the hardware side, i.e., the usage of the exact servers, storage and networking.

However, this situation is about to change for Azure Cloud, at Inspire’17, where several leading OEMs are announcing their Azure Stack systems. The event is being held July 9 – 13, in Washington D.C. This will enable a true Hybrid Cloud between Enterprises’ on premise private Clouds to Microsoft’s Azure Cloud. These systems are based on Microsoft’s “recipe” which guarantees the “must-to-have” seamless interoperability. Moreover, it includes a specific version of Windows Server that is a subset of Windows Server 2016 which supports Storage Spaces Direct and requires a RDMA-enabled networking. A good description can be found at: Enabling Higher Azure Stack Efficiency – Networking Matters.

Figure 2: Lenovo ThinkAgile SXM4200 25U (left) and SXM4200 42U/SXM6200 (right)

Inspire’17 visitors can see Azure Stack Systems at work in Lenovo booth #1214 where they are demonstrating Think Agile SX for Microsoft Azure Stack. This Cloud solution was announced in June’17. It was co-engineered with Microsoft and Mellanox and brings the power and convenience of Microsoft’s Azure Stack using Lenovo’s advanced servers, rated number one in customer satisfaction and reliability. These servers are equipped with the Mellanox’s 10/25GbE RDMA-enabled networking solution with Lenovo’s Networking switches, which offloads network functions from running on the CPU to the IO subsystem. All of which results in much needed higher Cloud efficiency.

Futuristic data center with row of server cabinets showing digital displays full of data, numbers, and blue blinking lights and leds, arranged in circular rows. A blue sphere of lights full of connections emerges from the background, linking each computer to a global network. Computer servers fill a room of a futuristic data center, used as a cloud computing and data storage facility. Room is illuminated by blue light. Low angle view. Supercomputer simulation, digitally generated image.