Energy Efficient Ethernet being put to the test

Energy Efficient Ethernet, or 802.3az in IEEE terminology, is an emerging standard designed to cut down on the energy used by Ethernet networks

The University of New Hampshire InterOperability Lab (UNH-IOL)  has begun testing Energy Efficient Ethernet (EEE) products to make sure they work together.

“The pre-testing process will allow [vendors] to be able to deliver new solutions in the quickest possible timeframe,” said Jeff Lapak, senior engineer for the UNH-IOL, in a statement.

Energy Efficient Ethernet, or 802.3az in IEEE terminology, is an emerging standard designed to cut down on the energy used by Ethernet networks. Standard support will enable Ethernet devices, such as switches and server cards, to enter low-power idle mode when not transmitting data in order to drastically reduce energy use.

Sanjay Kasturia, CTO of Teranetics and chief editor of the 802.3az standard, recently wrote in Network World that “LAN links generally average less than 10% utilization and even at peak times, the utilization does not reach 100%.”

Studies have also shown that power drawn by different manufacturers’ Ethernet switches can vary widely.

The standard, which will complement other recent energy efficiency standards for data center gear such as servers, is expected to be finalized by next year. Work on the standard started in 2006, when a “call for interest” was made.  The Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory were all among early supporters of the effort.

(Meanwhile, some work has been done on reducing Ethernet energy use based on existing standards, including through an Ethernet Alliance-sponsored contest back in 2008).

Don’t Miss: 10 really cool university network labs

Initially, UNH-IOL will test Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet gear, and will expand to testing other Ethernet types next year. UNH-IOL is the first third-party testing facility with EEE testing capabilities.Earlier this year, the lab hosted a Plugfest among pre-standard gear that was sponsored by the Ethernet Alliance.

As early as last year companies such as Broadcom began rolling out chips that supported the draft standard for EEE.

Energy efficiency has increasingly become a competitive focus for leading network and data center product vendors such as Cisco and HP.

For more on network research, follow our Alpha Doggs Blog.

Follow Bob Brown on Twitter at www.twitter.com/alphadoggs

Read more about lans and wans in Network World's LANs & WANs section.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags NetworkingenvironmentData Centergreen ITgreenhardware systemsGreen data centerEthernet SwitchLANs & WANsUniversity of New HampshireEnergy Efficient Ethernet

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Bob Brown

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?