Network Architecture for High-Performance Enterprise Data Centers

Posted on May 23, 2024 by

In today's digital age, the success of enterprises heavily relies on the performance and efficiency of their data center networks. A high-performance enterprise data center network is crucial for seamless communication, reliable data storage, and efficient resource utilization. This article explores key considerations, advanced data center network architecture, and optimization strategies for creating a high-performance data center network.

Understanding Enterprise Data Center Networks

Enterprise data center networks serve as the backbone of an organization's IT infrastructure, connecting servers, storage systems, and other network devices. These networks must be designed to handle heavy workloads, provide low-latency connectivity, and ensure data integrity and security. Key considerations include network architecture, traffic patterns, scalability, and flexibility.

Data Center Network Architecture

The Spine-Leaf design of data centers has replaced the conventional core-aggregation-access structure, improving network connectivity capacity, lowering convergence ratios, and facilitating simple expansion. In order to manage internal traffic inside and between Points of Delivery (PODs) in the data center, network convergence ratios are chosen depending on business requirements, and each interconnection link in the Spine-Leaf architecture has a 100G bandwidth. By separating the core and access switches, the three-layer underlay network of the Spine-Leaf design permits horizontal growth through the addition of uplink links and the reduction of convergence ratios during traffic bottlenecks. In order to provide flexible and elastic network deployments and resource allocation depending on business demands, the overlay network deploys dispersed gateways using EVPN-VXLAN technology.



This solution utilizes a spine-leaf network architecture and makes use of EVPN-VXLAN technology for network virtualization, drawing on experience in designing and implementing large-scale data center networks to create a flexible and scalable network infrastructure for upper-layer services. Network firewalls connect the data center's office and production networks, which are separated and safeguarded by domain firewalls, to the building's offices, labs, and regional center exits.

EVPN-VXLANThe production and office networks' core switches, which provide up to 1.6Tb/s of inter-POD communication bandwidth and a high-speed network egress capacity of 1160G, enable POD connectivity as well as connection to firewall devices. With a 24Tb horizontal network capacity per POD, high-bandwidth and ultra-low latency support for CPU/GPU and storage clusters in high-performance computing environments ensures minimum packet loss from network performance constraints.

Cabling adheres to the Spine-Leaf design as anticipated. Every POD's switches are deployed in a Top of Rack (TOR) arrangement, with two to three cabinets forming a TOR group, and are connected by 100G lines. 100G connections link TORs to Leafs. High cross-cabinet dependability within each POD is ensured by dividing its Leaf into two groups and deploying them in different network-occupied cabinets. The efficiency of cable deployment and administration is improved by the overall well-organized network structure.

Choosing the Right Network Equipment

The selection of network switches is a critical factor in the overall design of data center networks. Traditional large-scale network designs often choose chassis-based devices to increase the overall capacity of the network system and provide limited scalability. However, this approach has limitations and risks, including:

  • Chassis-based devices have limited overall capacity and cannot meet the growing network scale requirements of data centers.

  • Dual connections in core chassis devices result in up to 50% fault radius, which cannot effectively ensure business security.

  • Multi-chip architecture in chassis devices leads to severe bottlenecks in traffic processing capacity and network latency.

  • The deployment of chassis devices is complex, and diagnosing and resolving faults takes a long cycle, resulting in longer business interruption time for upgrades and maintenance.

  • Chassis-based devices require slot reservations to ensure future business expansion, increasing upfront investment costs.

The Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of the original network investment is greatly decreased by using the Spine-Leaf (CLOS) design when paired with modular switch networking. Horizontal scaling is possible using the Spine-Leaf design. Not even 1/8 of the network bandwidth is impacted when a spine switch goes offline, meaning that business operations continue uninterrupted. Further growth of the backbone network switching capacity and access capacity may be achieved by adding more switches and hierarchy levels in accordance with the data center's scale needs. Based on service, application, and business requirements, the full network may be purchased and deployed as needed.

FS can provide modular data center switches with multiple ports and multiple rates, with the maximum uplink port rate reaching 400G.

FS Accelerate Data Center Interconnection

The majority of data center network designs use sophisticated Spine-Leaf architecture and EVPN-VXLAN technologies to achieve network virtualization in light of current business transformation trends and the growing need for big data. This design allows for flexibility and scalability while delivering high-bandwidth, low-latency network traffic.

FS is a professional provider of networking solutions with a vision of moving businesses forward. We continuously deliver innovative, efficient, and dependable products, solutions, and services, including optimal switch and AOC/DAC/optical module solutions for data centers, high-performance computing, edge computing, and other application scenarios. These solutions improve client business acceleration capabilities at a low cost and high performance.

PCIe Interface
32 Ports 
40 Ports
40 x HDR 200G QSFP56 
32 x NDR 800G OSFP
100G QSFP56
200G QSFP56
400G QSFP112
PCIe 4.0 x 16
PCIe 5.0 x 16
ConnectX®-6 VPI
ConnectX®-7 VPI
800G NDR   400G NDR  200GHDR  100G EDR 
56G FDR  40G FDR
≦50m distance ≦100m
800G NDR  400G NDR
200GHDR  100G EDR 
56G FDR  40G FDR
≦50m distance ≦40km


A high-performance enterprise data center network is a critical foundation for business success in the digital era. By following design principles, leveraging appropriate technologies, and optimizing network performance, organizations can ensure seamless communication, reliable data storage, and efficient resource utilization. Staying abreast of emerging trends and technologies empowers enterprises to adapt and thrive in an ever-evolving digital landscape. Building a high-performance data center network is an ongoing journey that requires continuous evaluation, optimization, and adaptation to meet evolving business needs.

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