Hewlett-Packard Co. said its latest network hardware and software products increase performance and security while
reducing complexity, but some believe the company may be reducing the life span of its newly released core switch.
The Palo Alto, Calif.-based vendor's ProCurve Networking group this week released products to support and extend its Adaptive EDGE Architecture, which builds intelligence into access devices at the edge of the network.
Ultimately, HP's approach dedicates the core of the network to tasks such as managing aggregation and routing traffic. To that end, ProCurve is introducing the following products:
Steve Schuchart, analyst at Sterling, Va.-based Current Analysis Inc., said HP is offering reasonable prices, quality lifetime software upgrades, good functionality and reliable equipment. In fact, he said there's no reason why an enterprise customer shouldn't consider HP.
However, Schuchart said customers should know that the 9400sl series core routing switch is actually a BigIron MG8 from Foundry Networks Inc.
Traditionally, HP leveraged Foundry as an OEM for its large capacity switch products. But at Interop 2005, Foundry announced its new BigIron RX, which according to Schuchart, is a new core switch that essentially replaces BigIron MG8.
That product, Schuchart indicated, will be part of a new networking paradigm that HP will announce later this year.
Schuchart said the 9400sl series is intended for existing customers needing an upgrade in speed and density, but aren't interested in moving away from the traditional networking paradigm.
The 9400sl series, expected to be available in August, starts at $310,000. ProCurve Manager 2.0 and ProCurve Manager Plus 2.0 are expected to be available later this summer. ProCurve Manager Plus 2.0 starts at $3,100. The no-cost software enhancements for the ProCurve 5300xl switch series and Wireless Access Point 420 Series are slated to become available soon.