Brocade Unveils “The Effortless Network”

Innovative New Brocade HyperEdge Technology and Campus LAN Switches Deliver Unmatched Automation, Scalability and Affordability

SAN JOSE, CA — (Marketwire) — 03/06/2012 – Brocade (NASDAQ: BRCD) today announced unprecedented innovation in the campus LAN market with the introduction of the company’s vision for The Effortless Network™. This vision is based on the new Brocade® HyperEdge™ technology, which is designed to deliver new levels of automation and simplification of the campus LAN lifecycle — with significant cost savings and investment protection. Brocade also introduced two additions to the Brocade ICX™ switch family to support the company’s advancements in campus LAN technology.

The Effortless Network is based on three main pillars:

  • Dramatically simplified and automated access layer networks to significantly reduce operational overhead and enable IT to respond to business needs in real-time
  • Unmatched scalability and upgradeability to accommodate emerging applications and IT imperatives for the next decade, extending the life of the network infrastructure
  • No-compromise solutions that deliver enterprise-class functionality and availability at a tremendous business value

HyperEdge technology promises to enhance a wide range of current campus LAN-based applications, such as unified communications (UC) and security, while paving the way for emerging applications such as “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) enterprise mobility, rich video and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).

“Networks are now mission critical and IT resources are putting a premium on uptime and performance. The single biggest cause of downtime today, 37% in fact, is due to human error, in direct correlation with the increasingly large number of manual processes. Brocade’s HyperEdge technology will greatly simplify the management of campus LAN switches, significantly reducing errors and improving uptime.” – Zeus Kerravala, Principal Analyst, ZK Research.

HyperEdge technology will also have wide applicability across key enterprise customer environments, such as education and healthcare, which rely on campus LANs to perform many business operations. HyperEdge technology features two main capabilities that enable Brocade customers to dramatically reduce operational costs and extend the lifecycle of their campus LAN investments:

  • Single-point management that enables users to manage their entire access switching layer as if it were a single device, from initial deployment to ongoing configuration, software upgrades and monitoring. The primary goal of the technology is to dramatically reduce the cost and time required to manage the campus network lifecycle. It also improves compliance by ensuring consistent policy among all access layer ports, and increases network availability by reducing human error, which is the number one cause of network downtime.
  • Mix-and-match stacking allows users to build a stack of edge switches that delivers both basic connectivity and premium services at cost points never before seen. Users can mix and match premium and entry-level switches within a single stack, so that entry-level switches inherit all of the feature richness of the premium switches in the stack. This unique capability allows users to build stacks that cost far less and provide greater investment protection than any competitive offerings on the market today. This approach can also significantly extend the lifespan of the switching infrastructure. As the network evolves, premium switches can augment existing entry-level switch services, whereas competitive offerings would require a rip-and-replace conversion.

HyperEdge technology will be available on the stackable switch portfolio, including the Brocade ICX and Brocade FCX switch families, through a simple software upgrade when it becomes available next year.

Brocade ICX Switches
The new Brocade ICX 6430 Switch and Brocade ICX 6450 Switch feature full stacking capabilities, a rich set of Layer 2 and Layer 3 functionality and the ability to support advanced features such as Energy-efficient Ethernet (EEE) and MACsec encryption for link-level data protection. Available in 24- and 48-port 1GbE models, with optional 1/10GbE uplink/stacking ports, the ICX 6430 and 6450 can stack up to 384 ports for unprecedented entry level stack densities and functionality. Brocade now provides a complete family of wired and wireless switches that are entirely focused on combining low capital and operating cost with enterprise-class features and flexibility.

The new stackable access switches join the recently released Brocade ICX 6610 Switch and are designed for enterprise-class networks yet priced to fit any budget. Most importantly, the entire family of Brocade ICX switches is ready for HyperEdge technology, enabling customers to effortlessly upgrade their networks as their needs evolve. As a result, customers can be confident that the switches they are deploying today will deliver all of the benefits of HyperEdge technology well into the future.

“The bedrock of our business model is service; it’s what sets us apart in this market. Our biggest challenge is that we’re open 24/7/365 and we need incredible uptime and reliability. In addition, we need to own and run our equipment longer. We chose Brocade because they have the speed and reliability and they provide what we need at the best price. This creates the best value for me. I like that with the single-point IP technology I don’t have to go out to each switch individually for every change I make,” said Rob Willis, vice president IT, M Resort.

“Our customers are incredibly important to us and they need their networks to be reliable, flexible and easy to manage. Brocade offers all of this at the best price/performance value, and with this announcement, they have definitely taken the lead on innovation in the campus LAN market,” said Dave Norwood, president, Trusted Network Solutions.

As a provider of industry-leading networking solutions, Brocade recognizes the benefits that a joint technology partnership can offer. It believes that a solid, successful network infrastructure is best built by creating solutions with key industry partners, such as Microsoft.

“Organizations today are increasingly relying on advanced enterprise communications solutions — such as video, real-time collaboration and unified communications — to increase productivity and reduce costs. These applications require a solid networking foundation to deliver the seamless user experience that consumers expect,” said Warren Barkley, General Manager for Lync at Microsoft Corporation. “As Microsoft continues to drive next-generation communication technologies forward, it’s apparent that Brocade is focused on powering these new applications with innovative campus LAN solutions optimized to ensure highly reliable and scalable enterprise-class communications deployments.”