Networking titan Cisco is to triple the capacity of its top of the line Catalyst 5000 switch by next spring, according to a US press report.
The company refused to comment on the leaked information but is expected to combine technology from its Catalyst 5000 Lan switch and its Lightstream 1010 ATM switch to provide a data centre model that will be able to compete with Cabletron's MMAC+ switch at the high end.
The Catalyst 5500 is expected to incorporate three Catalyst 5000 buses, which will triple the frame switching capacity of current offerings and will provide 13 slots compared with the current five-slot Catalyst 5000. Together with support for Catalyst 5000 and Lightstream modules, the 5500 will add Gigabit Ethernet and Token Ring switching modules. It will also support a single-slot routing engine, bringing the routing capabilities of Cisco 7500 to the switch.
Software support for the switch is likely to include network layer Lan capabilities as well as support for the emerging MPOA (Muliprotocol Over ATM) standard, which provides a method to route multiple protocols in an ATM switched network.
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