Smartoptics enters into partnership with Dell for 100G optical networking

We are pleased to announce that Smartoptics and Dell have entered in to partnership for 100G optical networking. Under the agreement, our two companies will be able to offer simple and cost-effective 100G transmission solutions, connecting Dell switches over dark fiber.

Dell and Smartoptics share the philosophy of the Open Compute Project community and the view that open systems give organizations of all types and sizes the freedom to select the connections and architectures that suit their traffic and demands best. We are proud to partner with Dell towards the goal of offering simple and cost effective open-line networking, rather than vertically integrated, solutions for all types of data center connectivity.

As part of the new partnership, the Smartoptics DCP-101 and M-Series have successfully been verified under the Dell interoperability program together with Dell’s recently launched high-performance Z9100-ON and S6100-ON 100G switch families.

Addressing the challenge of long-distance 100G connectivity

The interoperability testing targeted the challenge of connecting 100G switches over longer distances. While standard transceivers, such as QSFP28 or even CFP2/CFP4, typically offer the perfect fit for data handling and transfer within the data centers or over shorter distances, problems arise when 100G traffic needs to be transported over long distances.

These challenges can be overcome with simple distance extension solutions for single-channel connectivity or multi-channel DWDM applications from Smartoptics. The interoperability testing focused on three different scenarios:

  • Distance extension solutions for Dell switches using the DCP-101
  • Multiple-channel connectivity between switches using passive mux/demuxes and the DCP-101
  • Long-distance connectivity between switches using DCP-101 and M-Series

Scenario 1:  100G distance extension solutions

In the first scenario, the Dell Z9100-ON and S6100-ON 100G switches were tested with Smartoptics DCP-101 transponder for simple distance extension solutions. The 100G output signals from the Dell switches are converted to DWDM signals that can be transmitted over longer distances using the DCP-101. The solution removes the distance limitations associated with QSFP28 transceiver by using a coherent DWDM CFP transceiver to connect the output signal of the DCP-101 to the line fiber and carry the signal over longer distances.

Scenario 2:  100G multi-channel DWDM networking

The second scenario uses Smartoptics DCP-101 transponders with passive DWDM mux/demuxes (multiplexers/demultiplexers) for providing multi-channel distance extension solutions for Dell’s Z9100-ON and S6100-ON 100G switches. The use of DWDM mux/demuxes allows multiple traffic channels to be transported over one single dark fiber. Up to 80 independent traffic channels can be combined, offering a simple and cost-efficient way to connect Dell switches over longer distances.

Scenario 3:  100G long-distance open-line DWDM networking

The Dell Z9100-ON and S6100-ON 100G switches were tested with Smartoptics DCP-101 and the M-Series intelligent DWDM multiplexer. By taking full advantage of the M-Series distance extension, signal monitoring and amplification capabilities, you can achieve multi-channel distance extension that allows the switches to be connected over even greater distances, up to 1000 kilometers.


Read more in details on the tested scenarios and applications for data center connectivity with Dell switches in the Solution Brief.


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