Nortel Networks is aggressively chasing the business that Bay Networks lost to Cisco, Foundry and Packet Engines - by launching a low priced chassis switch.
Bay rivals claim the company has been suffering since its acquisition by Nortel and see this launch as an attempt by the company to reassert itself in the market.
The chassis switch, which will be unveiled show at the Cebit technology exhibition in Germany this month, is expected to give Nortel the bargaining power to buy back all the customers it has lost to competitors in the past 18 months.
One large customer, that was given details of the offering, said the switch had been described as a "Cisco killing" chassis. The product, which was offered at a "very low price", will sit between the campus and the Wan and carry telephone as well as data traffic.
According to the user, the chassis will have a 128Gbps back plane with 10 slots - two for Gigabit up-links and eight slots for 10/100Mbps. Each card will have 24 or 30 10/100 ports, adding up to 240 10/100Mbps per box.
Eight slots support Layer 2 only and the two uplink slots can be either Layer 2 or Layer 3. It is expected to feature application aware switching at wire speeds.
For more stories see 3 March issue of Network News
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