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Brocade Busts Out 10-Gbit/s Plans

Brocade unveiled plans to break into 10-Gbit/s Ethernet during its analyst meeting yesterday, and explained how it is dealing with the challenge of Cisco in the aftermath of Brocade's $973 million McData acquisition. (See Brocade Closes Out McData and Brocade Completes McData Buy.)

Speaking at the meeting in San Jose, Calif., Brocade CEO Michael Klayko explained that the vendor will "layer out" a road map for 10-Gbit/s Ethernet products in the second half of this year. This, he added, will be built on technology from the vendor's recent acquisition of iSCSI NIC specialist Silverback. (See Brocade Grabs Silverback and Brocade Buys SilverBack.)

Brocade expects to see initial 10-Gbit/s Ethernet revenue sometime in 2008, although Klayko promised that the firm is not planning a total departure from its Fibre Channel roots. "We see it as an extension to Fibre Channel. We do not believe that people will throw away their 13 million ports of SAN," he said.

More and more vendors are cranking up their efforts around 10-Gbit/s Ethernet, looking to tap into customer demand for low-cost storage fabrics such as iSCSI. (See 10-Gig iSCSI SANs Set for Takeoff, Force10 Round Hits $113M , 10-Gig IP SANs Hit Bleeding Edge, 10GBase-T Adapters Debut, and The iSCSI Subtext to 10-GigE.)

The topic of Cisco cropped up repeatedly during last night's event, and analysts grilled Brocade about the threat posed by the networking giant. Cisco, a major rival of Brocade's, has been growing its storage business over recent months, and Brocade confirmed that the acquisition created some nervousness amongst users. (See Cisco: Storage Stars in Earnings.)

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