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Juniper Networks' J-series

It's that time of the year again -- time again for the Juniper dream. You know, the one that pits Juniper Networks as the enterprise savior offering a credible, enterprise-wide alternative to Cisco Systems. Only this time, there's good reason such fantasies could come true.
Juniper's acquisition of NetScreen in April gave the routing giant a competitive enterprise-based security offering. Moreover, Juniper was expected to release in June its first suite of enterprise routers (access routers to be exact, but enterprise routers nonetheless) and what it claims is the first commercial-grade DSL firewall.

While both offerings have a decidedly enterprise focus, the reality is that they're more likely aimed at the service provider market. Here, they'll serve as a platform for Juniper's Infranet Initiative, the company's plan for an uber-Internet in the enterprise that will combine the Internet's reach with the predictability and security of a private network.

The new routers may fit in well with largely Juniper networks, the choice isn't so obvious where there's a mix of routing platforms. The Juniper routers offer some compelling advantages over their Cisco counterparts, but their drawbacks must also be considered. The lack of integrated application support (for VoIP, for example) may run against Juniper's whole thrust of enabling service providers to drop-ship a single device that supplies all of a remote office's WAN connectivity requirements.


Juniper added three edge routers to fill a critical niche in its enterprise portfolio, labeling them under the J-series moniker. The J2300 is aimed at small offices, the J4300 at small-to-medium-sized offices, and the J6300 at large remote sites. The boxes are equipped with two 10/100Mbit/sec ports and between 4 and 90Mbits/sec of uplink capacity. Pricing ranges from $2,000 for the J2300 to $10,000 for the J6300.

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