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10 Gigabit Ethernet Alliance to Develop New Network Standard

Still upgrading your network to Fast Ethernet? You’re slipping behind, buddy.

At a time when 1 Gbps Ethernet networks are considered very high-end, network hardware and software vendors are leapfrogging an order of magnitude ahead. 3Com Corp., Intel Corp., Cisco Systems Inc., Sun Microsystems Inc., and other vendors banded together this week to form the 10 Gigabit Ethernet Alliance. The alliance will work toward the development of the highest-speed Ethernet yet as well as the ratification of new IEEE standards.

With the rapid growth of the Internet and its uses beyond simply gathering information - e-commerce, teleconferencing, and multimedia being just a few - more bandwidth and faster network speeds are necessary. The alliance will work together to ratify the IEEE's new 10 Gigabit Ethernet standard, also known as 802.3ae, by the spring of 2002. The new standard will provide the extensive bandwidth necessary to facilitate applications such as digitized x-rays, computer aided design/computer aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM), and the fusion of voice, video, and data into a more cohesive single network.

The goals of the new alliance, according to its charter, are to support the 10 Gigabit Ethernet standards effort; to contribute to the IEEE (www.ieee.org) 802.3ae task force; to promote industry awareness, acceptance, and advancement; to provide resources to establish and demonstrate multi-vendor interoperability; and to foster communications between suppliers and users of 10 Gigabit Ethernet technology and products. - Isaac Slepner

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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