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QLogic Grabs Director's Chair

After years as a key Fibre Channel fabric switch player, QLogic has thrown its hat in the ring as maker of FC director switches, a move that pits it against Brocade/McData and Cisco.

"We're hoping to effect expansion of the director market by another 20 percent," says VP of corporate marketing Frank Berry. But he insists the niche he's looking at is one where other big suppliers aren't making headway.

Specifically, the QLogic SanBox 9000, which is now generally available, is aimed at organizations looking for a smaller, more compact alternative to big mainframe-attached director switches, or to meshed fabric switches.

One customer who fits the profile is Ramy Katrib, CEO and founder of DigitalFilm Tree, a Hollywood post-production house that works with leading TV and movie makers. Katrib, a longtime user of QLogic HBAs and smaller switches, welcomed the SanBox 9000 after using the 5000.

DigitalFilm Tree was ready for an upgrade. "In the type of work we do, our file sizes are bigger than any others... Also, we need to have the connectivity to Mac, PC, Linux, and Irix all in the same place," he says. QLogic wasn't the only provider who offered all this. "We looked at other switches, but a comparable switch from Brocade was about twice the cost."

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