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Cisco 4-Gbit Director MIA

Brocades lead with 4-Gbit/s directors will last a few months longer than anticipated.

Several industry sources say Cisco planned to bring out its MDS 9513 director with 4-Gbit/s blades next week, but now has pushed it back until April or later. Further, there's been speculation that Cisco has been having trouble getting the director qualified by its OEM partners, particularly EMC, but an EMC spokeswoman says the storage vendor hasn’t even received the product to begin qualification.

It’s hotly debated how much an advantage 4-Gbit/s switches are at this point because there are only a handful of 4-Gbit/s arrays shipping, but Brocade has had the market to itself on directors since bringing out its SilkWorm 48000 last August. (See Brocade Delivers Director .)

“We were expecting the announcement of the MDS 9513 on Jan. 17, but now we expect Cisco to introduce the MDS 9513 around the April/May timeframe,” Susquehanna Financial Group analyst Kaushik Roy wrote in a research note this week. “We believe the announcement is now more likely to coincide with the product's qualification by major [OEM] vendors.”

A consultant who follows the switching space closely concurs: “I did hear that qualifications on Cisco's 4-Gig director have slipped to March or April.”

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