Brad Hedlund's blog is one of my favorite sources of excellent UCS (and other general) material. I just found the exceptional UCS videos, which deserved a re-share.

Part 1 – The Physical Architecture of UCS

In this video we take a look at the physical network architecture of Cisco UCS and incorporate the new capability of connecting both blade and rack mount servers to UCS Manager.

Part 2 – Infrastructure Virtualization & Logical Architecture

Here we look at how Cisco UCS virtualizes every significant component of the physical architecture; switches, cables, adapters, and servers. Then we look at how that virtualization creates a more simplified logical architecture transposed from the physical architecture.

Part 3 – Switching Modes of the Fabric Interconnect

In this video the unique behavior and advantages of End Host mode are discussed and compared and contrasted to Switch Mode, and a traditional Layer 2 switch.

Part 4 – Upstream Connectivity for SAN

Here we take a look at the different ways to integrate Cisco UCS to the data center SAN with FC End Host mode, and the connecting storage directly to UCS with the new FC Switch Mode.

Part 5 – Appliance Ports and NAS direct attach

In this video we discuss the new Appliance Port and how it can be implemented for connecting NAS or iSCSI directly to the UCS Fabric Interconnect.

Part 6a – Fabric Failover

The unique Fabric Failover capability is explained and its “Slam Dunk” uses are shown such as with Hyper-V, and bare metal OS installations.

Part 6b – Fabric Failover (cont)

We continue with discussing the potential of using Fabric Failover with VMware software switches and VM FEX. The best practice design for integrating Nexus 1000V with Cisco UCS is also briefly discussed.

Part 7a – End Host mode Pinning

Here we take a look at the dynamic and static pinning behavior of End Host mode, and how load balancing works.

Part 7b – Upstream LAN connectivity

In this video we look at the different ways to uplink UCS to the upstream network, how failure scenarios are handled, and comparing individual uplinks vs. port channel upliks vs. vPC uplinks.

Part 8 – Inter-Fabric Traffic and Recommended Topologies

This video examines different examples of inter fabric traffic and the recommended topologies for linking UCS to the upstream LAN network that provide the best handling of all traffic flows.

Part 9 – Connecting UCS to Disjointed L2 Domains

Here we discuss the problems you can run into when connecting UCS to separate Layer 2 networks, and ways to make it work.

Part 10 – Gen2 Adapters

This is brief video covering the new Gen2 adapters from Emulex, Qlogic, Broadcom, and Intel. The Cisco VIC (Palo) adapter is also discussed and with it’s unique VM-FEX integration with VMware vSphere.

Part 11 – Cisco VIC QoS

In this video we take a deeper look at the advanced QoS capabilities of the Cisco VIC, and how that can be leveraged in server virtualization deployments as one example.

Part 12 – SPAN and IPv6

In closing the comprehensive SPAN capabilities of UCS are briefly discussed. Also, I pay some lip service to IPv6 (grin).

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