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Despite efforts to differentiate itself from the pack, QLogic Corp. (Nasdaq: QLGC) can't seem to shake the label of being "one of the crowd" in the public-company storage networking arena.

Of course, sometimes that's not a bad thing -- like earlier this week when a small rally pushed many SAN-sector stocks higher (see Tech Rally Boosts LR Index). But even with the boost, the Aliso Viejo, California-based QLogic remains far below its yearly high, and it's still underneath the $40-range target price set by Wall Street analysts covering the firm. And several firms recently cut earnings estimates for QLogic's second fiscal quarter 2002, which closed at the end of September.

In spite of this, almost all analysts covering the company rate QLogic a Buy, expecting its business to pick up sometime next calendar year.

It's easy to see why Wall Street types would like QLogic, a profitable and growing company that has leading products in several cutting-edge sectors, including Fibre Channel switching and host bus adapters (HBAs).

For its first fiscal quarter of 2002, which ended July 1, the company reported earnings per share of 20 cents on $92 million in revenues -- a 19 percent increase in revenues from the same quarter a year ago.

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