Nortel raises stakes with open IP

But rival Cisco hasn't flinched

Nortel Networks rolled out what it calls 'New World' routing and IP software in New York on Monday, with hopes that a wide variety of servers, PCs, consumer gizmos, set-top boxes and processors will soon become Internet compatible under their Open IP Environment.

The software, currently licensed to over 75 companies, features open architecture and APIs. Some of those companies are rather well known. Intel, for one, will offer elements of Open IP with its Internet Exchange (IX) Architecture for software programmable networking devices. Microsoft is another big player using a component of the Nortel Open IP, part of which is currently shipping in Windows NT Server 4.0, and will ship with Windows 2000 Server.

The Open IP is also meant to dovetail with the company's optical networking systems, now in development with a projected release date in the coming year. All of the required technology for optical packet conversion has been validated, Nortel Open IP Environment General Manager Kalai Kalaichelvan told The Register.

In a related announcement, Nortel slashed prices by 50 percent on its current line of data routers. The new price is being introduced across the entire portfolio of enterprise access router products including the Bay Router AN and ARN.

Impressive as these announcements are, rival Cisco Systems has shown no evidence of concern, and neither has its investors or Wall Street. The company's shares rose 6.1 per cent today in early trading on news of stronger-than-expected revenue growth. Perhaps they know something we don't. ®

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