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Sochi opening

Walking in a WiFi wonderland

Olympics – summer or, in this case, winter – provide a great proving ground for telco technologies: a huge number of users of widely-varying technical literacy, lots of disparate device types, a fairly lumpy movement of users between indoor and outdoor venues, and of course, stringent security requirements. Vulture South spoke …

IBM, AT&T ink global Internet of Things tie-up

Big Blue and AT&T are moving to wrap up a chunk of the Internet of Things, announcing a global partnership that's as nebulous as the concept it's embracing. Starting with a focus on utilities and city administrations (the latter having long been in IBM's sights), the alliance is pitched as having “privacy in mind” as the two …

Ericsson and Ciena ink SDN development and distribution deal

Telecoms giant Ericsson will develop capabilities targeting software-defined networking and IP-optical convergence under a distribution deal with network specialist Ciena. Under the agreement, Ericsson will sell Ciena’s Converged Packet Optical systems, including the 6500 Packet Optical Platform and 5400 family. The former …
Gavin Clarke, 17 Feb 2014
Uncov chronicles the failure of Web 2.0

Cisco HAUNTED by $655m memory components snag

Cisco has swallowed huge costs to attempt to firefight heavily degraded memory components found in the company's kit - but it's refusing to bad-mouth the supplier behind the tetchy chips. It said that customers and biz partners, whose products are largely out of warranty, would be supported by Cisco after it decided to switch …
Kelly Fiveash, 17 Feb 2014
Sony CV-2000 reel-to-reel consumer video recorder

I want SDN and I want it now!

Sysadmin Blog A recent demonstration of Juniper's Software Defined Networking (SDN) showed a level of automation that makes me loathe the mundanity of my day job all the more. Software defined networking is a collection of technologies that could free me to do far more business-critical things with my time, like research, automating more …
Trevor Pott, 14 Feb 2014

Fibre Channel Industry Association extends roadmap to 128G bps

It's all about speed: the industry association behind Fibre Channel has laid out its acceleration timeline, with 32G bps 128G bps now nailed to the calendar. The Fibre Channel Industry Association has set down its Gen 6 standard, and its timeline puts shipment of kit following the spec at 2016. The basic channel in the …

Is FCoE faster than Fibre Channel? Who knows? Just run your own tests

The Cisco Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) supporters' club has taken grave exception to what it views as a deeply flawed Evaluator Group study, funded by Fibre Channel (FC) enthusiasts Brocade, which showed FC was faster than FCoE. FCoE supporters say the study shows no such thing and lambasted both the Evaluator Group and …
Chris Mellor, 11 Feb 2014

Oracle and Pluribus team up, flip the switch on Cisco SDN killer

Oracle has signed a technology access and development deal with startup Pluribus Networks to nibble away at Cisco's proprietary networking business. The database giant has announced the deal to develop and test "a number" of software-defined networking (SDN) technologies for OpenStack with Pluribus. Oracle said the fruits of …
Gavin Clarke, 10 Feb 2014
management regulation1

Juniper, Palo Alto to square off over firewall tech

A long-running legal battle between Juniper Networks and Palo Alto Networks is due to proceed to trial on 24 February, after a Delaware court declined a motion from Juniper for a summary judgement. The sue-ball battle has been going on since 2011, when lawyer's letters first began passing between the two companies. At the …

Indian internet tunnelers trump Chinese web deniers

Asia accounts for four of the world’s top five VPN-using countries, although Indian netizens are more likely to hide their location than those in China, according to new research. Out of 28 per cent of global users who tunnel through the internet, only one fifth do so because they don’t want to be spotted by government snoopers …

Open MPI hits milestone with FORTRAN-ready 1.7.4 release

The decade-old Open MPI project, beloved of the HPC community, has shipped code for a major feature release that brings it close to a complete MPI 3 implementation. Speaking to The Register, Cisco's Jeff Squyres (who along with Richard Graham, then of Los Alamos and now with Mellanox, was one of the instigators of the Open MPI …
Nervous girl bites nails

QLogic and Emulex struggling to escape Fibre Channel woes

Businesses exist to make profits. Quarterly results statements provide a window through which to look at how publicly-owned businesses are doing. So, QLogic and Emulex: how are you doing? QLogic did well in its third fiscal 2014 quarter, which finished on December 29 last year, with profits up both sequentially and annually. …
Chris Mellor, 6 Feb 2014
Implementing SDN - difficult choices

Hipster SDN firewalls can gentrify hypervisor slums

As the software-defined-networking (SDN) bandwagon gathers pace, the notion that all your networking appliances can be replaced with virtual appliances is being bandied about a lot. Gartner chap Joerg Fritsch has just posed an interesting question to those pushing that line: “whether a computing node with a hyper-visor installed …
VNI forecast by country

Fixed networks to sag under weight of mobile data: Cisco VNI

Cisco's latest Visual Networking Index (VNI), its annual analysis of current and future bit flows, has hit the wires and it confirms what most people already consider a given: mobile access is continuing to grow, both in terms of volume and in terms of users. The VNI states that mobile connection speeds are also on the rise, …

OpenDaylight beams down a little Hydrogen

The Linux foundation's hat-in-the-SDN-ring, the OpenDaylight project, has pushed its first major build out the door: Hydrogen, a combo software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualisation (NFV) platform. With code now hitting the ground, OpenDaylight has also gone some way towards one of its original aims: to be …
OCP Storage VAult

OCP gets Ethernet silicon interface

HPC interconnect specialist Mellanox has added an Ethernet switch SDK to its contribution to the Facebook-led Open Compute Project. The SDK follows contributions dating back to 2013 to the OCP's networking sub-project, an effort which also attracted participants like Broadcom, Cumulus Networks, and Intel. For that project, …
PluribusNetworks

Sons of Sun roar 'Freedom!', uncloak server-switch

Cisco's embattled business gained another nimble competitor on Tuesday as startup Pluribus Networks bellowed "Freedom!" and lobbed a Frankenswitch over the networking giant's ramparts. The Frankenswitch – a "Server-Switch", in Pluribus Networks' terminology – is designed to compete with Cisco, Juniper, and Arista switches in …
Jack Clark, 4 Feb 2014

Brocade-funded study says Fibre Channel faster than FCoE

A study funded by Brocade has found that Fibre Channel provides faster access to all-flash arrays than Fibre Channel over Ethernet. FCoE involves linking all-flash arrays to accessing servers via Ethernet instead of a Fibre Channel fabric. Testers from the Evaluator Group, who carried out the study on behalf of Brocade, hooked …
Chris Mellor, 4 Feb 2014
™ Big Data In Focus

Big Data? Yeah, nice buzzword. Give us the nuts and bolts this time

Big Data has crossed the chasm from hype to everyday reality remarkably quickly. Its adoption has been accelerated by hungry data warehousers using big data techniques to get better answers from their data mining activities. ™ Big Data In Focus Attending the TM Big Data InFocus 2014 conference in Amsterdam, it became …
Chris Mellor, 30 Jan 2014

Cloud, schmoud, says Cisco: The IoT needs 'FOG COMPUTING'

Cisco is looking to wrap more of the Internet of Things in its warm embrace, announcing that it's going to create a Linux-plus-IOS mashup to run IoT apps at the network edge. Designated IOx, the “fog computing” (Cisco's term) operating system is being pitched as a way to deal with data coming from IoT devices. For example, an …
Ciscoblood

Dell taps Sons of Cisco for networking Manhattan project

When you have a techology division that, in real estate terms, would be generously termed a "fixer-upper" there's little to lose by giving the keys to a young, ambitious competitor and welcoming them in to give the crumbling place a lick of paint. At least, that seems to be Dell's view – why else would it cede strategic control …
Jack Clark, 28 Jan 2014

Bottom falls out of Nokia's network rump

Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) is facing a 19 per cent drop in sales for the last quarter and an even bigger challenge for the coming 12 months: how to win enough new biz to support a company soon to be shorn of its handset division. NSN will comprise the majority of the company once the sale of the Finnish giant’s once- …
Phil Muncaster, 21 Jan 2014
Dropbox IOS

VCs drop cash on DropBox, bestow $10 BEELLLION valuation

Ten billion greenbacks. That’s what venture capital firms (and Dropbox’s board and execs) think the file sync'n'share pioneer is worth. Dropbox started offering its sync'n'share services to consumers using a freemium business model, and has latterly moved into offering business syncing and sharing services. It’s competing with …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jan 2014
Siege

Riverbed: We don't want your steenkin' $3.1 BEELLION

Jerry Kenelly's Riverbed board has declined billionaire activist investor Paul Singer's Elliott Management's unsolicited bid for Riverbed. A Riverbed statement said: "After consideration with independent legal and financial advisors, [the firm] has unanimously determined not to pursue the unsolicited proposal from Elliott …
Chris Mellor, 17 Jan 2014

Apple fanbois make it 'official', hook up with Internet of Fridges Things

Apple has joined the Internet of Things after naming an air conditioning unit as the first fruity-certified smart appliance. The Chinese manufacturer Haier's Tianzun air conditioner has been granted MFi status, which has nothing to do with the defunct British DIY chain. Rather, it is Apple's certification programme for AirPlay …
Jasper Hamill, 16 Jan 2014
Aegis One rack room

Health Sec opens new data centre: Biz not Surrey to be in Godalming

The first phase of the colo data centre set up by new operator Aegis Data in leafy Surrey commute hotspot Goldalming was formally opened by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Friday. The London data centre market, according to the firm's CEO, accounts for over half of the entire European data centre market. Most of the region's …
Chris Mellor, 14 Jan 2014

Who should be responsible for devices, apps and services?

Tech Panel Are you a user or business manager fed up with IT constantly telling you "No" when it comes to the devices and apps you need to get your job done? Are you an IT pro tired of having to deal with users wanting their latest bling connected to the network? If you fall into either of these categories, or are just trying work through …
Dale Vile, 20 Dec 2013
Scott Guthrie, photo: Tim Anderson

Microsoft's cloudy chief: Azure reliability knocks your own kit for six

Interview Microsoft ships an update to Azure every three weeks. Scott Guthrie, Microsoft's vice president for Windows Azure, reckons it's adding features and capacity in an effort to catch up with Amazon. Just announced is a new Azure datacentre in São Paulo, Brazil. "We have more regions than Amazon, we have coverage in places like …
Tim Anderson, 16 Dec 2013
Red Hat Shadowman logo

Red Hat snuggles up to Dell with 'enterprise grade' OpenStack offer

Dell and Red Hat will work together to propagate OpenStack clouds running the Linux distro, in what the PC maker claims is a first. The pair have announced they will jointly develop "enterprise grade" private clouds that are based on Dell hardware and Red Hat's Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform. The first fruits are due next …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Dec 2013
Facebook data center - server racks

WTF is... NFV: All your basestations are belong to us

Mobile network operators would have had an easier life if it wasn’t for smartphones and the flood of data traffic they initiated. Apps have led to a massive increase in the volume of data moving back and forth over phone networks - not just from users; the ads in free apps helped too - and operators are struggling to cope. And …
Tony Smith, 9 Dec 2013
Two SAS and FCoE thugs killing Fibre Channel

32 Gig Fibre Channel takes another step towards reality

The Fibre Channel Industry Association (FCIA) has announced that a 32 gigabits per second version of the standard is just a little bit closer to reality. The Association has let it be known that the “INCITS T11 standards committee has recently completed the Fibre Channel Physical Interface - sixth generation (FC-PI-6) industry …

Quantum crypto pitches for data centre links

The quantum crypto business is hardly crowded, but ID Quantique is hoping to set itself apart with a 100 Gbps-capable unit. This is hardly consumer kit, however: the target market for the QKD-plus-crypto-engine kit is outfits running multiple high capacity links, either at 1 Gbps or 10 Gbps. Think of inter-data-centre …
Cisco MU-MIMO diagram

WTF is … MU-MIMO?

With 802.11ac Wave 2 due for ratification in December, El Reg had a talk to Cisco's Andrew Myles, Manager of Protocols in the Borg's Wireless Network Business Unit, to get a handle on one of its more interesting characteristics: MU-MIMO. Along the way, there were some handy reminders. Myles, who's been around the wireless scene …

THIS ONE WEIRD CHIP cuts weight from data centre power bills

A Korean scientist whose CV includes 100 Gbps Ethernet for Finisar says he's created an extremely low-power 100 Gbps clock data recovery (CDR) chip to help cut data centre communications power consumption. As we all know, data centres are power gluttons. Build one as big as the NSA, and keeping it from catching fire is a problem …
Murchison Widefield Array telescope installation

Juniper bags AARNet fatter pipes and SDN

Juniper has given an elbow to Cisco's ribs down under, nabbing a key AARNet upgrade contract in the long-time Borg-friendly network. The research network, whose history stretches back to the very beginnings of the Internet in Australia, is currently planning its AARNet 4 upgrade, which will deliver a 30-fold expansion in …
Design for the  Orp 1 secure router

NSA-busting secure, open, router seeks cash and code from crowd

Australian embedded systems designer Redfish is hoping to attract funding from the crowd to market a secure routing platform that open-sources both the hardware and software to protect users from unwanted snooping. Speaking to The Register ahead of the launch, Redfish managing director Justin Clacherty said the project is …

Forget terabit Ethernet, the next step is 400 gig – if we can afford the R&D

SC13 – Updated The current top-end Ethernet standard may be 100 gigabits per second, but don't expect the next step up to be one terabit per second. The days of Ethernet speeds improving by an order of magnitude are gone. Why? Because nobody wants to pay for the necessary research and development – nobody in the US or the EU, that is. "My view …
Rik Myslewski, 21 Nov 2013
Home hetnet channel selection diagram

Boffins ponder wireless 'hetnets' as home backhaul helpers

Heterogeneous networks – hetnets, or WiFi offloading – are all the rage among carriers and equipment vendors, but it generally assumes the WiFi access point has a wired connection. A group of Greek and UAE researchers has proposed a scheme for using wireless as the backhaul channel. The researchers are particularly looking at …

OpenFlow love-in shows off SPEED-DATING protocol, quick config

SDN umbrella group the Open Networking Foundation is performing happy dances after an interoperability plug-fest that ran from November 4 to November 8. The week-long demonstration focussed on testing version 1.3 of the OpenFlow protocol, and testing the OF-Config management/configuration capability written into version 1.1.1. …
John Chambers at the World Economic Forum 2010

Arista wants Cisco Catalyst 6500 scalp. Price on head? $35bn

This month has been a biggie for data networking launches, with Cisco uncloaking Application Centric Infrastructure - its answer to the software defined network (SDN) - along with the new Nexus 9000 switch series. (My colleague Jack Clark has penned a fine analysis of Cisco’s ACI strategy here.) Also in November, Arista Networks …
Drew Cullen, 19 Nov 2013
Windsurfer mid-flight (3CX logo in sail)

3CX PBX for Windows: Everything you ever wanted from a phone system

Review Back in the 1990s when I started to work with telephone and voicemail systems it was all pretty straightforward: install some analogue or ISDN lines and write a vast cheque for a PBX. This meant, in my case, an Alcatel 4400 and an Octel Serenade voicemail server. The handsets were digital, though proprietary, and connected by …
Dave Cartwright, 19 Nov 2013
Ciscoblood

Amazon, Facebook, Google give Cisco's switches the COLD shoulder

Analysis Networking giant Cisco lost around $10bn in market value last week as investors sold out in response to weak earnings and poor growth projections. Worse yet, some of its biggest customers – from Amazon and Google to social network giant Facebook – are implementing technologies that will allow them to reduce their dependence on …
Jack Clark, 18 Nov 2013