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SNW: Day One

ORLANDO, Fla. - The organizers of the Storage Networking World show were stunned by the turnout today. They had originally expected it to be good, given the buzz in this market. Then the events of September 11 took hold, and many companies cut back their travel plans.

“We had several sponsors drop out at the last minute, and the registration tailed off after September 11,” said Ronald Milton, VP and general manager of strategic programs for ComputerWorld, the organizers of the show. He said they were expecting 750 people, but by lunch time today 1,500 had registered, with more still to come.

Incidentally, the Byte and Switch team were part of the “overspill crowd” that got kicked into another hotel down the road. (Thanks, Ron!)

Here are the highlights from Monday:

  • Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) appears to be getting its act together on the iSCSI front after an initial reluctance to embrace the new technology (see Agilent Stands Firm on Fibre Channel). This week it will announce an iSCSI developers kit, including software and a PCI card, for customers preparing to migrate their networks from Fibre Channel to iSCSI. “We now have a well-defined iSCSI strategy but will continue to lead in the Fibre Channel market,” said Dan Parkman, communications manager at Agilent. In the first quarter 2002, Agilent plans to release a 1-Gbit/s iSCSI controller.
  • Brocade Communications Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: BRCD) announced a 2-Gbit/s Fibre Channel switch for enterprise use. (see Brocade Ponders 2-Gbit/s Test).
  • Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) spokespeople told Byte and Switch that “there will be no show-stopper announcements from us at SNW” -- which is a little disappointing, given the huge fanfare Cisco made entering the market over six months ago. It did announce three organizations that are “evaluating” its SN 5420 storage router: Komatsu America International Company -- the North American subsidiary of Komatsu Ltd., a manufacturer of heavy machinery and electronics; the University of Houston-Downtown; and Data Peer Inc., a managed data and storage service provider based in New York. In addition, it announced an upgrade to the 5420 firmware, which now plugs in to tape libraries.
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