Take components from the leading Intel (INTC)-based server vendor and add software from the leading internetworking company in the industry and what do you get? The Compaq (CPQ) Netelligent 8500 router.
Using standard off-the-shelf components and Cisco Systems (CSCO) Internetworking Operating System (IOS) software, Compaq will announce its first router this week, to be followed next week by a demonstration at Networld+Interop.
The Netelligent 8500 Communications Platform is targeted at small and medium-sized businesses who would like to connect to their remote sites, according to Jeff Wilbur, director of marketing for Compaq's Networking Products Division.
"We could do everything from 1,000 nodes or less--no problem," Wilbur said.
The 8500 supports the IP and IPX local area network (LAN) protocols and frame relay, X.25, PPP, and ISDN wide area networking (WAN) protocols. Token Ring support is in the works, according to Wilbur.
The router's memory can be expanded from 8 to 40 megabytes using standard SIMMs. It comes with a single embedded 10Base-T controller and port, but includes three Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) expansion slots. That offers room for a dual-port t1/E1 serial controller, an ISDN controller, a 10/100 PCI Ethernet controller, or other cards.
Wilbur said Compaq is focused on making internetworking gear with standard components and offering lower prices through Compaq's volume discounts. Cisco, in turn, hopes the IOS software will be the standard operating system for networking.
As part of the announcement, Compaq will also bundle Netelligent Management Software 1.1, a 32-bit application that guides users through the configuration process and integrates with Insight Manager 3.0, Compaq's LAN management tool.
Estimated street price for the 8500 is $2,767. It will be available next month.