Brocade is aiming to deliver an FCoE switch and FCoE server adapters, and sign a tier-one HBA OEM by the end of the year. FCoE means Fibre Channel over Ethernet and involves sending Fibre Channel (FC) protocol messages across ethernet links. Traditionally FC messages pass through a fabric with switches and director nodes …
"It is confidently expected that storage arrays will emerge with native FCoE interfaces, at which point a server with an FCoE adapter or CNA could talk via ethernet and an ethernet switch to an FCoE storage array with no need for a FC fabric structure at all."
This statement is not accurate. FCoE or DCE (data center ethernet) provides a shared media layer for FC and IP networks.CNA or FCoE adapters contain separate chips for FC and IP communications. CISCO already ship FCoE switches and there are separate management interfaces for the FC fabric (fabric manager) and IP (IOS) network. I believe these switches run the NEXUS OS, which basically is the SAN-OS and IOS merged.
I spoke to a Brocade rep who said FCoE won't really take off for another 3-4 years, but said it was inevitable that it will be the prevalent technology for data centres of the future.