Feeds

Virtual Instruments plans probe 'n' sniff tools for Ethernet networks

But Arista bloodhounds are hot on its heels - analyst

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Fibre Channel networking probester Virtual Instruments is going to expand into Ethernet-based file network probing and analysis, according to the 451 analysis group. The analysts also reckon an IPO is coming but said that Ethernet switching speed freak Arista is set on entering Ethernet network analysis too, giving VI real competition in the Ethernet space.

Virtual Instruments (VI) technology sticks a probe into Fibre Channel networks, sniffs all the traffic, from end to end, and works out what's going on. We've seen a report from the 451 Research group which says VI is looking forward to reaching a $100m annual revenue run rate by the end of the year, expanding its probe's reach and thinking about going for an IPO in 2014.

VI developments are said to include adding Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) top-of-rack-switch support to its software SAN Availability Probe product for SNMP analysis type work. A new hardware and software technology is being developed for VI's mainstream probe with NAS (network-attached storage) support added to it. This expands VI's relevance to file-based networks and also means it can cover both file and block access in unified storage networks. This platform would be extensible. 451 expects the first release to occur possibly by December this year when VI might attain a $25m quarter and hence a $100m annual run rate.

There might be an IPO some time in 2014 and then, in 2015, an update to VI's technology with 10Gbit Ethernet support, better FCoE support and, if enough customers need it, 16Gbit/s Fibre Channel support. With Brocade selling 16Gbit/s FC switches now, and Emulex and QLogic having 16Gbit/s FC host bus adapters available, this VI schedule looks a tad slow, especially as more players - like Arista - aim to enter the Ethernet traffic analysis market.

Arista doesn't need a probe: it has Ethernet switches and they see all the traffic coming through them as a matter of course. It's allocating some of its switch ports as network taps and feeding traffic data to analytics software. Emulex's hoped-for Endace acquisition could tie in here, adding its network analysis skills via an API link to the Arista switch.

The Ethernet network tap-dancing class is getting more members by the day. No doubt VI will play the independent vendor card but its technology will have to be ace to win out over Arista and any other Ethernet switch vendor that pulls the same technology trick as Bechtolsheim's baby. There's also a distant prospect that Brocade, evaluating its strategy under new CEO Lloyd Carney, could think its Fibre Channel switches could provide taps as well, and so feed an expanded Endace traffic analysis product set. VI might not retain its effective monopoly in deep Fibre Channel probesterdom for that much longer. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?
Don't worry about that cable, it's part of the config
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Want to STUFF Facebook with blatant ADVERTISING? Fine! But you must PAY
Pony up or push off, Zuck tells social marketeers
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Oi, Europe! Tell US feds to GTFO of our servers, say Microsoft and pals
By writing a really angry letter about how it's harming our cloud business, ta
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.