As more ships are being connected to broadband internet through either VSAT bands, L-band or 3G/4G/LTE mobile phone networks, there has been a significant rise in the demand forintegrated gateway solutions capable of not only managing vessel voice and data communications but also mitigating cyber risks.
Network connected ships and their onboard systems require different levels of management and protection depending on the network services and degree of connectivity, and such holisticnetwork system approach does in turn require a high performance network platform with a powerful processor, speedy packet processing capability, high memory bandwidth and great power efficiency.
A communications provider specialized in offering reliable and managed remote communication solutions came to Lanner looking for a network and communications management appliance for linking ship networks to satellites and other connectivity links for operational and crew requirements.
The requirements are as followed:
- Must be capable of managing multiple wide area network (WAN) links by integrating VSAT with L-band satellite communications and mobile networks for more redundancy and reliability of connections.
- Must be a platform on which a secure, virtualized network environment can be created for running independent, and remotely managed virtual machines.
- Must feature powerful processing prowess, sufficient random access memory and integrated network switch ports.
- Can be relied upon for enabling advanced firewall functions, including VMs with malware protection, website filtering, VPN data encryption and intrusion prevention
The FW-8894 is a 1U high performance x86 network appliance built with Intel’s latest server-based 14nm micro-architecture Xeon® E5-2600 v4 family processors and C612 PCH (codenamed Broadwell-EP). This particular appliance offers additional lightening faster packet processing performance, high memory bandwidth and significant power efficiency.
The FW-8894 comes with dual Intel® Xeon E5-2600 v3/v4 Series processorsfor handling enterprise-grade network traffic data and the associated control/signaling infrastructure requirements. Also notable is its support for Intel® QuickAssist acceleration technology, which enables offloading encryption/decryption and compression for up to 25 Gbps.
What’s more, the FW-8894’s modular interface allows for the installation of various Lanner modules, making available a maximum of 4 slots for 1G, 10G, or 40G, Fiber or Copper/Bypass NIC modules such as the 100G N2S-RRC01.
As an integrated service network gateway, the FW-8894, configured as per this particular use case, comes with two 14-core Intel Xeon E5-2600 processors, 64GB of random access memory, 8 integrated managed network switch ports, dual hot-swap power supply units and dual hard drives. The FW-8894, when deployed, takes up only 1U of a ship’s below-deck rack, as opposed to 5U of rack space otherwise required for a separate NSD, router, server and network switch appliances.
The network communications onboard and onshore also benefit from the FW-8894’s high-availability, redundancy and reliability given the aforementioned dual hot-swappable PSUs, RAID1 dual hard drives and multiple network interface cards. The uptime can be further ensured and maximized, if when the FW-8894 is doubled, realizing complete hardware redundancy in case of an appliance failure.
The FW-8894’s powerful processor, multi-core performance and ample memory together serve to enablea secured virtualized environment for running/hosting virtual machines, not only allowing for remote configuration and dedicated resource allocation but also delivering flexible internet access/VoIP services with maximum network efficiency and security for the crew onboard.
The communication solution provider succeeded in deploying Lanner’s FW-8894 as a complete application delivery and network service/management system for integrating VSAT with L-band satellite communications and mobile networks for redundancy and reliability of connections, therefore maximizing the use of network resource and available information both onboard and onshore.