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CNT Flings FC Far & Wide

CNT (Nasdaq: CMNT), rolling out the first offering from its acquisition of Inrange Technologies, is announcing today new WAN and MAN connectivity options for the FC/9000 Fibre Channel director (see CNT Extends FC/9000 Over MAN, WAN and CNT Walks Off With Inrange).

The company claims it's the first vendor in the market to offer both MAN and WAN options in a Fibre Channel director, designed to extend storage offsite -- over virtually any distance, CNT claims -- for such applications as remote disk mirroring.

"No one else has the value-add to do true enterprise data replication," says Ed Walsh, CNT's VP of marketing and business development.

For metro-area connectivity, CNT provides a coarse wavelength division multiplexing (CWDM) card, which Inrange developed prior to the CNT acquisition, that slides into the FC/9000 chassis. CWDM, a less expensive cousin to dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM), can support distances of up to about 80 km. For longer distances, the company is offering a rackmountable version of its UltraNet Edge storage router, which supports Fibre Channel over IP (FCIP), FC-to-ATM, or packet-over-Sonet.

But it turns out that the CWDM card isn't really integrated at all with the FC/9000. "It just plugs into the chassis," says an ex-Inrange employee. "It doesn't actually talk through the backplane to the switch... there's not much value in it."

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