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HP Switch Deal Good for Users

Hewlett-Packard Co.'s (NYSE: HPQ) decision to acquire Riverstone Networks Inc.s (OTC: RSTN.PK) enterprise switch technology could spell good news for users, according to experts.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company forked out $28 million earlier this week to beef up its own ProCurve range of networking products with Riverstone’s XGS technology (see HP & Riverstone Sign Deal).

Last year Riverstone unveiled its XGS family of 10-Gigibit Ethernet Layer 3 switches -- the 16-slot XGS 9016 and the eight-slot XGS 9008. However, the company has now decided to refocus its efforts on the service provider market by selling off the enterprise switch technology and the associated software licenses.

So far, HP is staying tight-lipped on its specific plans for XGS, although the company has said that it will reveal a roadmap for new products based on the technology before the end of the year. However, Mark Thompson, worldwide sales and marketing manager for HP’s ProCurve range of switches, told Next-gen Data Center Forum that these will sit at the core of a network with the company's existing ProCurve boxes situated at the edge.

Dan Golding, senior analyst at Burton Group, believes that many organizations will be able to exploit their existing purchasing agreements with HP for the likes of printers and storage to get their hands on this new switching technology when it comes out.

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