Brocade helps build Bank of China’s next-generation data centre

Bank Will Deploy 200 Brocade HBAs to Improve Global Server Connectivity and Performance

Brocade (Brocade®) (Nasdaq: BRCD) today announced that Bank of China is utilising Brocade host bus adapters (HBAs) to improve server connectivity within its data centre. The bank will deploy 200 Brocade HBAs to improve server connectivity and performance in the IT infrastructure that supports the organisation’s innovative and fast-growing banking and insurance businesses.

One of the world’s largest financial institutions, Bank of China has 100 million customers and generates more than RMB 85 billion a year in revenue. Bank of China’s enormous data centre is responsible for all data processing within the bank as well as data connectivity between its global branches and sub-branches.

To sufficiently address the challenges associated with continuous development of new businesses, the unceasing surge in transaction volume and the growing adoption of virtualisation technology, Bank of China’s Bancslink system needed new server connectivity options to provide higher performance, guaranteed service levels and simplified management for both physical and virtualised environments. The organisation was ultimately looking for a way to relieve server stress, maintain high availability and minimise planned and unplanned downtime—offering the benefits of business continuity, support for new businesses and enhanced customer service.

After evaluating the feasibility of several options, the bank decided to deploy 200 Brocade 415 and 425 Fibre Channel HBAs, to be used mainly within its Bancslink system to connect tellers within Bank of China’s domestic and global branches. Operations personnel using front-office terminals process all banking transactions from businesses and individuals, including deposits and swaps, and transmit the data to Bancslink for processing by the core server, which then forwards it to Bancs – the core banking platform. This process places a heavy demand load on the Bancslink servers and their HBAs.

The Brocade 415 and 425 HBAs provide a strategic framework to simplify data centre connectivity, optimise performance and increase scalability while reducing both cost and risk. The HBAs provide storage networking connectivity into an infrastructure composed of Fibre Channel switches, directors and backbones. More importantly, the local and remote management of distributed HBAs utilises fabric-based boot logical unit number (LUN) discovery for automated SAN boot configuration to quickly deploy diskless servers—centralising management and supply.

“Maintaining high server availability to help ensure business continuity has become one of the primary challenges for the bank,” said a Bank of China spokesman. “With its hot-swappable SFPs, the Brocade HBAs can significantly improve server availability, simplify customer management, ensure continuity of banking services and help us provide customers with 24×7 access to service. This will improve the user experience and enhance our bank’s reputation. The Brocade 415 and 425 HBAs we are implementing will complement the Brocade DCX® Backbone and the Brocade48000 Director as well as the other Brocade SAN switches already in use, enhancing their high IOPS capacity and service quality. In addition, the Brocade products have been awarded certifications by VMware, Microsoft, Red Hat and Novell, and can improve the performance of virtualised environments. They will lay a solid foundation for VMware virtualisation in our test environment, and for our future data centre virtualisation initiatives.”

The Brocade 415 and 425 HBAs provide a high performance configuration. Their smart PCIe lane negotiation helps to maximise bus throughput, with parallel I/O engines to support simultaneous I/O transfers. Their hardware-based virtual channels, with low/medium/high data priorities and target rate limiting, minimise storage target data overflow and maximise link utilisation between HBAs and adjacent switch ports, effectively ensuring quality of service (QoS).

“Enterprises worldwide are seeking to improve the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of their data centres by deploying high-performance HBAs to improve server connectivity,” said Ben Sham, managing director, Brocade China. “We are dedicated to developing end-to-end solutions that offer customers the next-generation server connectivity products they need to meet increasingly stringent demands. We are proud that our HBAs will help Bank of China to improve its server availability and efficiency, and to support its business innovation and growth.”

About Brocade

Brocade (Nasdaq: BRCD) develops extraordinary networking solutions that enable today’s complex, data-intensive businesses to optimise information connectivity and maximise the business value of their data. For more information, visit


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