Networking giant Cisco this week introduced a next-generation switch aimed at better management of converged voice, video and data networks, whilst driving the market over to 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GE).
A third generation of interface modules for Cisco's flagship Catalyst 6500 line of Layer Three switches boosts performance by a factor of three over existing switching fabric.
Featuring the new Catalyst 6500 Supervisor Engine 720, the offering boasts an aggregate capacity of 720Gbps, or 400 million packets per second forwarding for IPV4 traffic.
The switch line includes a two-port 10 GE module designed for metropolitan area service providers; a four-port 10 GE module for data centres; a pair of new 48-port 10/100/1000 Ethernet modules; and a 16-port GE module that supports greater GE port densities.
The offerings, although expensive and targeted at the network core, could offer another five or six years' investment in the technology.
"These next-generation advancements change the market economics to drive the transition from 10/100 to 10/100/1000 and Gigabit EtherChannel to 10 GE, while simplifying operational manageability of customer networks," explained Luca Cafiero, senior vice president of Cisco's Switching, Voice and Storage technology group.
Jimmy Kyriannis, network architect and manager at New York University, said: "The network is increasingly becoming a strategic asset which can help us realise our academic, research and business goals, via an infrastructure which can support the advanced nature of our new network core.
"By moving to GE, we can increase network availability through a proven technology that's cost-effective to support."
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