Cisco to Ship ATM Router Interface and ATM Switch
Will Provide Industry's First Standards-Based ATM Router, FirstComplete Solution for ATM-LAN Backbones.
MENLO PARK, Calif., Feb. 28, 1994 -- Cisco Systems will ship an ATMrouter interface and an ATM switch, bringing to market the industry's firststandards-based ATM router and the first complete solution for linkingAsynchronous Transfer Mode technology into local-area network (LAN)environments. Both products represent major design elements in the new
Together Cisco's ATM Interface Processor (AIP) for the high-endCisco 7000 routerfamily, and the Cisco ATM switch,
Anthony Alles, Cisco ATM product manager, said, "ATM is of practicaluse only if there is an interoperable way of connecting it to the user'sLAN environment. Until now routers and switches have communicated usingvendor-proprietary protocols. Cisco is the first to introduce both ATMrouting and switching in conformance with the ATM Forum specifications forconnection set-up.
"As users move to take advantage of ATM speeds, we see them creatingrouter clusters by replacing FDDI with ATM switches, which offer 25 timesthe aggregate throughput. FDDI is being redeployed on the network peripheryvia LAN switches such as the
Amoco Corporation is using the Cisco ATM Interface Processor in its ATMtestbed. "The goal of our ATM Research and Industrial Enterprise Study(ARIES) is to demonstrate that ATM networks are a viable future forcomputing and telecommunications environments," said Dave Beering, stafftelecommunications analyst and co-director of the project. "In our testbedwe will build a working scale model of Amoco's internationaltelecommunications network, using ATM as a core technology. We intend toprove that ATM technology can be successfully deployed in a complexcorporate networking environment. We expect that partnering with Cisco inthe ARIES testbed will help make ATM a reality for Amoco. We really arepleased that Cisco is participating in the ARIES project, since routerswill play an important role in our move to ATM-based networks. They are theonly component in our architecture that will truly talk to anything."
Cisco AIP: First To Support Both Packet/Cell StandardsThe ATM Interface Processor for the Cisco 7000 router family willconnect existing LAN-based internetworks with new ATM cell-switchingbackbones. The first commercially available standards-based interface, itwill let network designers leverage ATM to connect physical LANs to ATMtoday, and with enhanced software releases will permit internetworking ofvirtual LANs across ATM later.
The AIP supports all emerging ATM signaling and encapsulationstandards, including both standard methods of converting data packets toATM cells and back (ATM Adaptation Layers 3/4 and 5), ATM User-NetworkInterface Specification (Version 3.0) as defined by the ATM Forum, and RFC1483 for encapsulation of multiprotocol packets over ATM, as well asSNMP for network management. The ITU-T Q.93B standard will be supported ina subsequent software release.
The AIP also will allow the user to choose from a number ofinterchangeable physical-layer "daughter cards" that support TAXI 4B/5B(100 Mbps) on multi-mode fiber and SONET/SDH STS3c/STM1 (155 Mbps) onmulti-mode or single-mode fiber. Other physical-layer options will be addedin the future, including DS3 and E3, eliminating the need for an externalATM DSU.
Firstdemonstrated at the Interop conference in August 1993, the AIP isimplemented using two MIPS family RISC processors, the NET/Adaptive FREDchipset for segmentation and reassembly, and the AMD TAXI encoder/decoderfor 4B/5B or the PMC/Sierra SUNI chipset for SONET/SDH.
ATM Switching: Buy It By the PortCisco's ATM switch, which supports up to 16 155-Mbps ATM interfaces,was developed through an alliance with NEC following an August1993 agreement by the two companies to align their ATM strategies.
Unlike competing products that are available only in fixed,fully-populated configurations, the highly flexible Cisco ATM switch can bepurchased with any number of interfaces, reducing entry costs. Interfacetypes can be mixed and matched for use in workgroup or WAN switching.Available interfaces, all compliant with ATM Forum specifications, includeTAXI 4B/5B (100 Mbps) on multi-mode fiber and SONET/SDH STS3c/STM1 (155Mbps) on multi-mode or single-mode fiber. Other physical-layer options willbe added in the future.
The Cisco ATM switch is the first switch on the market that providesfully integrated support for ATM Forum UNI V3.0 signaling, eliminating theneed for a separate connection management unit that could reducereliability. Both permanent and switched virtual circuits (PVCs and SVCs)are supported. Private Network Node Interface (P-NNI) will be supported asit is fully defined; this emerging ATM Forum standard for interconnectingATM switches closely resembles the routing protocol technology with whichCisco has a decade of experience.
Supporting all traffic types, the Cisco ATM switch uses a non-blocking,2.4-Gbps cross-bar matrix switch fabric that eliminates cell loss. It hasfour priority levels and separate queuing classes for data- and time-sensitive traffic. Multicast traffic is handled with no throughputdegradation.
The Cisco ATM switch provides SNMP-based network management and willsupport other ATM management standards as they evolve.
Shipment of the AIP and ATM switch will complete the