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Networking this Week: All Cisco, All The Time

No matter where you turned this week, there was Cisco: A whopper of a product announcement, solid quarterly earnings, and the arrest of a hacker who had stolen its source code .

Cisco's big announcement gave networking managers two big options for improving the secure of their networks. The networking giant announced a new line of dedicated security appliances that combine a firewall, VPN, intrusion prevention, and anti-virus technologies into a single device; and also new integrated-services routers that combine security capabilities with network routing and switching.

By mid-week, though, it was all about the money. It was time for Cisco's quarterly earnings, and the results, in the words of Cisco honcho John Chambers, were "solid." --- profits up 16 percent and revenue up 10 percent.

Chambers noted that IP telephony contributed $1 billion in revenue, for a 35 percent year-over-year growth for that technology. It was the first quarter that IP telephony had crossed the $1 billion point. Chambers claimed that Cisco will soon be the largest provider of overall enterprise telephony. He also noted that Cisco's service provider market segment experienced "outstanding performance," was Cisco's fastest growing segment for the quarter, and was up 20 percent compared to last quarter, and up 25 percent year to year overall.

Later in the week, the FBI announced the arrest of a hacker who Cisco claimed had stolen a portion of Cisco's Internetworking Operating System version 12.3. Previously, the New York Times had reported that federal officials and security pros said the theft was part of a wide pattern of thousands of attacks on military and research computers across the world.

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