Network News: Cisco, Level 3, Force 10, Ciena

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Here’s a roundup of  some of this week’s headlines from data center networking companies:

Cisco to acquire Pari Networks.  Cisco (CSCO) announced its intent to acquire privately-held Pari Networks, a provider of network configuration and change management and compliance management solutions that will complement Cisco’s smart service capabilities. “As business functions become more reliant on devices and applications that run over their networks, customers realize that maintaining the health and performance of the network is critical,” said Joe Pinto, senior vice president of Cisco’s Technical Services.  “Pari Networks will help Cisco and our partners to deliver smarter, more proactive services that help our customers to identify potential network problems before they occur and optimize the performance, management and efficiency of their networks.”  Financial terms were not disclosed for the deal, which is expected to be completed in the third quarter of Cisco’s fiscal year 2011.

Force 10 scores lowest latency in independent study. Force 10 Networks announced that its’ S-Series S4810 top-of-rack (ToR) access switch demonstrated as much as 5 percent to 70 percent lower latency than comparable switches in a 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) configuration based on a network performance and power test. Data center network tests were conducted by independent analyst and publisher Nick Lippis and Ixia. “Latency is fundamental to assuring a user’s excellent experience,” said Lippis. “With east-west traffic flows making up as much as 80% of data center traffic, low latency requirements are paramount as every trip a packet makes between servers when responding to an end user’s query adds delay to the response and reduces the user experience or revenue potential. Our rigorous testing showed that Force10 has indeed placed great emphasis on minimizing latency as well as power/cooling costs in the construct of its architecture.” Leveraging a non-blocking, cut-through switching architecture, the Force 10 S4810 delivers line-rate Layer 2 and Layer 3 forwarding capacity with ultra low latency to maximize network performance.  Ken Won, Director of Product Marketing at Force 10 recently wrote a Network World article on Trends reshaping networks.

Level 3 to support Roku box streaming. Level 3 Communications (LVLT) announced that it has been selected to provide content delivery network (CDN) services to support live, 24/7 streaming of Wealth TV’s lifestyle channel content over the Internet to Roku’s Web-enabled television set-top boxes nationwide, allowing the entertainment network to expand its audience reach and monetize its content in new ways. “When we looked at our options for live, broadcast-quality content delivery, Level 3’s depth of experience and technical expertise in delivering high-quality, 24/7 content over the Internet were major differentiating factors,” said Charles Herring, president of WealthTV. “Level 3 ramped up our streaming quickly and efficiently, allowing us to better reach viewers when, where and how they choose.”

Ciena CEO appointed to Telcom committee.  Ciena (CIEN) announced that President Obama has appointed Gary B. Smith, Ciena’s president and CEO, as a member of the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee (NSTAC).  The mission of this committee is to provide collaborative advice and expertise about telecommunications national security and emergency preparedness issues. “I am honored by this appointment and am proud to be part of an esteemed membership with a focus on securing and protecting the United States’ telecommunications infrastructure,” said Smith. “Ciena builds customer relationships with the highest levels of integrity and transparency, and I look forward to leveraging that experience in continuing the trusted public/private partnership as part of the NSTAC.”

About the Author

John Rath is a veteran IT professional and regular contributor at Data Center Knowledge. He has served many roles in the data center, including support, system administration, web development and facility management.

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