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Byte and Switch Shakes Up Top Ten

Since the launch of Byte and Switch a month or so ago (is that all?!) several interesting things have come to light about the companies in our Top Ten Private Storage Networking Companies list. So the time has come to shake them up a bit.

It turns out our number one company, TrueSAN Networks Inc., isnt quite as true as it makes out, leading to its chop from the top spot. There’s a new entry at number ten, from the Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers portfolio, displacing whatta lotta Yotta Yotta -- which needs no explanation. And 3PARdata Inc. has just scored $100 million in funding, catapulting it up the list to join the other companies that are rolling in cash. This means there’s a new number one.

But first, to TrueSAN, a company doing the whole ball of wax months before anyone else -- which set our alarm bells ringing. It turns out TrueSAN is teetering on the edge of being a systems integration company. Its Paladin system can switch Fibre Channel and gigabit Ethernet traffic within the same fabric, hold multiple terabytes of data, and perform NAS and SAN virtualization through parallel processing all within the one box. So what’s the catch? It’s simply that all this capability comes from buying off-the-shelf switches, HBAs, and chipsets and patching them together into one system.

To TrueSAN’s credit, its software does do a very good job of binding all these components together, which is why the company has customers and maintains a high position on this list. However, the reality is original equipment wins in the end, and this is why we are moving TrueSAN down.

Entering the list at number 10 is Zambeel, a hot new virtualization player backed by Vinod Khosla of Redback Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: RBAK) and Juniper Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: JNPR) fame.

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