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Cisco's Storage Climbs

During last night's quarterly report, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) CEO John Chambers played hide-and-seek, as usual, about his company's storage earnings. But he offered enough information to indicate Cisco took share from its Fibre Channel switch rivals (see Cisco Reports Q3).

From a storage area networking perspective, we had another very solid quarter,” Chambers said on Cisco’s call with analysts Tuesday night.

We’re not sure how solid. Cisco never reveals exact revenue for storage, giving only ballpark figures for yearly or sequential growth (see The Cisco Guessing Game). This time around, Chambers put Cisco’s storage revenue for the quarter at over $70 million. Though, of course, it's not clear what it was in the previous quarter, Chambers said SAN orders increased in mid-single digits sequentially and more than 70 percent year-over-year, while “our top two peers in this market had year-over-year growth rates that were relatively flat or even down slightly in the most recently reported quarter.”

From recent forecasts given by the competition, it appears Cisco took more market share from leader Brocade Communications Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: BRCD) than from No. 2 McData Corp. (Nasdaq: MCDTA). (See Brocade Bungles Quarter and RIP: CNT UMD.)

Here's why: Brocade last week said it expects to report revenue in the range of $144 million to $145 million for last quarter, down from $166.6 million in the previous quarter. McData put its revenue at $98 million to $99 million for last quarter, compared to $105.8 million in the previous quarter.

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