GigaLabs introduces enhanced gigabit switch

GigaLabs Inc. today announced an enhanced gigabit Ethernet switch that supports routing functions and input/output switching as well as multicasting capabilities.

The GigaStar 3000/S is an enhanced version of the GigaStar 3000 switch which the company announced in February. With a 32 gigabit/sec backplane the new switch provides twice the bandwidth capacity of the previous switch and adds services such as multicasting and Layer 3 Internet Protocol switching.

The product will be available on the General Services Administration schedule and the National Institutes of Health's Electronic Computer Store pact through FDC Technologies Inc.

Multicasting allows data voice or video to be broadcast to multiple locations simultaneously. While other vendors will soon offer multicasting in their switches GigaLabs is the only company that can maintain gigabit speeds while multicasting said Kon Leong president of GigaLabs. The multicasting capability is hardware-based and the 3000/S can deliver multiple video streams to more than 2 000 users simultaneously Leong added.

"Agencies in the [Defense Department] would be interested in the fault tolerance of multicasting " said John Bodine federal sales manager at GigaLabs. Multicasting also allows for multiprocessing rather than sequential processing letting a user query more than one database at the same time he added.

The switch should also be popular with government users of high-end simulation and molecular modeling applications and with users who have set up server clusters Bodine said. "Now with Layer 3 support the switch can also be a corporate backbone switch " he said.

Layer 3 IP switching provides intelligent routing such as filtering broadcast traffic and packet forwarding at wire speeds.

Layer 3 intelligence is built into GigaLabs' switch hardware for higher throughput Leong said.

"The 3000/S aims at the heart of the enterprise and would replace campus routers " Leong said. "It also extends the concept of I/O switching even further" because it can connect directly to workstations servers mainframes supercomputers and storage devices.

The 3000/S aggregates gigabit Ethernet uplinks that would feed to the GigaStar 100 workgroup switch supporting switched Ethernet and switched 100Base-T traffic Bodine said. The gigabit Ethernet standard should be ratified in 1998.

Options on the GigaStar 3000/S include one-port gigabit Ethernet one-port GigaPipe and a 16-port 10/100 switched Ethernet module.

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