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Requiem for FCoE

Do you remember Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE)? It was the one protocol that was supposed to unify the storage and networking worlds and make the data center easy to deal with and manage. Cisco stood behind the protocol and lead the charge to integrate it everywhere. Looking back on everything, the promise was better storage everywhere with networking to ensure it worked the way we expected.

So what happened? Why are we where we are today? Because FCoE certainly didn’t take over the world. Or even the data center. In fact, FCoE has been relegated to the Stack of Forgotten Protocols along with so many other magic bullets. To understand all the reasons why FCoE didn’t work to unify the world, you have to have someone with knowledge of both networking and storage. Who might this wizard be? None other than Tony Bourke, the Data Center Overlord. He knows the protocol inside and out and he knows exactly why writing the epitaph for FCoE is very appropriate today. Check out an excerpt from his excellent post here:

As a result, Fibre Channel networks are handled with a lot more care than we do with a traditional Ethernet/IP network. The environment is lot more static, with changes made infrequently, where as Ethernet/IP networks, especially with EVPN/VXLAN implementations are only getting more dynamic. Dynamic and Fibre Channel don’t go well together. FCoE doesn’t change that.

Read more at Tony’s blog here: Requiem for FCoE

About the author

Tom Hollingsworth

Tom Hollingsworth is a networking professional, blogger, and speaker on advanced technology topics. He is also an organizer for networking and wireless for Tech Field Day.  His blog can be found at

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