Feeds

Zombie Nortel grabs Cisco by the neck, again

Spherix claims patent rights over practically every network

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Cisco must by now be getting sick of acting as defender-by-proxy of the entire computer networking industry, with yet another pile of ex-Nortel patents being wrapped up in a lawsuit delivered to San Jose.

Spherix, once a biotech and now a patent toll-collector, picked more than 100 former Nortel patents from troll-in-chief Rockstar, with Rockstar advising the downstream troll on which companies it should target.

The eleven patents covered by the new lawsuit, filed in Delaware on March 24, cover such a wide range of capabilities that it's impossible to view this lawsuit in any light other than it being an opening gambit which, if successful, would see Spherix levying tolls on practically any network vendor. Here's the list:

  • 7,385,998 – Encapsulating traffic “over metallic physical mediums”, with claims covering ATM, Frame Relay, Ethernet, IP, PPP, voice and Infiniband.
  • 6,578,086 – Dynamic network topology management.
  • 6,697,325 – reconverging a network after a link failure.
  • 8,607,323 – which covers “pinholing” to allow media communication across firewalls.
  • 7,664,123 – a virtual router.
  • 7,397,763 – admission control for stuff like conference calls.
  • 6,807,174 – a less-interesting patent for the future, since it's about DS-X signal transport in ATM.
  • 5,970,125 – getting CPE to “phone home” to a server.
  • 6,130,877 – using broadcast messages to activate network “entities”, with rate control.
  • 6,222,848 – SDH to gigabit Ethernet.
  • RE40467 – data flow management inside a switch based on interface cards and a backplane.

Spherix's complaint alleges that “the vast majority” of Cisco's switching and routing revenue is generated “by products and services implementing technology that infringes the asserted patents”. For example, everything that implements IS-IS Incremental SPF (shortest path first) infringes a Spherix patent, as does any product implementing Cisco's FabricPath topology management.

With Cisco's CRS-X and IOS XR software in line over virtualisation, the lawsuit seems to El Reg to be a threat to more than just Cisco. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
It's Big, it's Blue... it's simply FABLESS! IBM's chip-free future
Or why the reversal of globalisation ain't gonna 'appen
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
Bitcasa bins $10-a-month Infinite storage offer
Firm cites 'low demand' plus 'abusers'
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
CAGE MATCH: Microsoft, Dell open co-located bit barns in Oz
Whole new species of XaaS spawning in the antipodes
Microsoft and Dell’s cloud in a box: Instant Azure for the data centre
A less painful way to run Microsoft’s private cloud
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.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
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.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.