Networking giants will soon carry the torch to Atlanta.
In two weeks, Networld+Interop will attract tens of thousands of IT professionals to Atlanta and vendors will be ready, showcasing their latest solutions to problems that never seem to end.
Vendors who will be busy at the show include Sun Microsystems' software division, SunSoft, which will unveil a comprehensive strategy for Internet-based management, management of intranets, and Microsoft Windows NT servers through the Solstice enterprise management framework.
In an event that will poke fun at Microsoft's Cairo code name, which has evolved into a term for every Microsoft operating system upgrade, Sun will use an Egyptian theme to announce a new Web server for Windows NT and new Java-based management capabilities for Solstice Enterprise Manager for Unix and NT networks.
Also on the network management front, McAfee will announce its first enterprise-capable management suite, dubbed McAfee Enterprise. The suite will include Saber LAN Workstation, antivirus and help desk functions, as well as Seagate Software's Backup Exec for Windows NT storage management product. The network management product will run on Windows NT and represents the company's first play beyond its traditional PC and LAN strengths.
Compaq Computer will use the network-oriented N+I show floor to unveil a complete Compaq solution demonstration, using the company's new Netelligent switches and routers with its servers and desktops.
Among the products being shown will be a new Netelligent 5606 manageable 100Base-T switch, scheduled to be announced next week. The new Ethernet switch includes six ports and supports IP and IPX routing, virtual LAN's and includes Remote Monitoring functions.
Compaq previously announced an unmanaged Netelligent 5506 Ethernet switch. That switch can be upgraded via a management card for $1,403. The Netelligent 5606 will be available in October at an estimated street price of $5,567.
The demonstration is a significant moment for the Houston, Texas-based company as it attempts to move from being a PC and server vendor to a systems and solutions company similar to IBM and Hewlett-Packard.
Cisco Systems will get into the switching swing of things at Interop too, albeit in a different manner. The networking giant will unveil plans to turn its 7000 series of routers into switch/router boxes, offering the speed of switching with the manageability of routing. Cisco will offer upgraded processors and networking software as part of the plan.
Cabletron Systems will also focus on the LAN switching market, debuting an Access switching chassis for LAN environments based on its Multi Media Access Center-Plus enterprise switching hub. Coming in under $7,000 for Token Ring, Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, ATM, and FDDI support, the product offers an enterprise upgrade path for LANs.