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Tiny Tera: a packet switch core

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5 Author(s)

Describes Tiny Tera: a small, high-bandwidth, single-stage switch. Tiny Tera has 32 ports switching fixed-size packets, each operating at over 10 Gbps (approximately the Sonet OC-192e rate, a telecom standard for system interconnects). The switch distinguishes four classes of traffic and includes efficient support for multicasting. We aim to demonstrate that it is possible to use currently available CMOS technology to build this compact switch with an aggregate bandwidth of approximately 1 terabit per second and a central hub no larger than a can of soda. Such a switch could serve as a core for an ATM switch or an Internet router. Tiny Tera is an input-buffered switch, which makes it the highest bandwidth switch possible given a particular CMOS and memory technology. The switch consists of three logical elements: ports, a central crossbar switch, and a central scheduler. It queues packets at a port on entry and optionally prior to exit. The scheduler, which has a map of each port's queue occupancy, determines the crossbar configuration every packet time slot. Input queueing, parallelism, and tight integration are the keys to such a high-bandwidth switch. Input queueing reduces the memory bandwidth requirements: When a switch queues packets at the input, the buffer memories need run no faster than the line rate. Thus, there is no need for the speedup required in output-queued switches

Published in:

Micro, IEEE  (Volume:17 ,  Issue: 1 )