News Release

Four-Port Token Ring Interface Card for Cisco Routers Sets New Performance Standard

MENLO PARK, Calif., July 27, 1992 -- A new four-port token
Jul 27, 1992

MENLO PARK, Calif., July 27, 1992 -- A new four-port token ring interface card for Cisco Systems' AGS+ router/bridge provides more than twice the token ring performance of the industry's previously fastest router/bridge -- enabling the user to build large, distributed token ring internetworks.

The Cisco Multiport Token Ring Card is based on IBM's 16/4- megabit-per-second token ring mini-card, which Cisco licensed in October 1990. Since that time Cisco and IBM have cooperated in enhancing the IBM driver software for optimum performance in internetworking environments.

LANQuest Labs, San Jose, Calif., recently tested the Multi- port Token Ring Card for performance in source-route bridging (SRB) and IP routing over token ring. Test results showed that the product achieves a per-port forwarding rate exceeding 25,000 packets per second (compared to a previous industry maximum of 14,500), and an aggregate system throughput greater than 66,000 packets per second (versus the previous top of 25,000).

First With 4 Token Ring Ports On One Card

The first internetworking card to offer four token ring ports on a single board, the Cisco Multiport Token Ring Card enables the AGS+ to internetwork up to 16 token ring LANs.

The new card joins three other Cisco token ring interfaces -- two with a single port, one with two ports -- which are based on Texas Instruments' TMS380C16 Commprocessor token ring mini-card. The company will continue to support these products, which operate in all Cisco's modular router chassis models.

Don Listwin, Cisco's director of product marketing, said, "With the number of high-density token ring installations growing dramatically, performance and density are more critical than ever. Now AGS+ users can segment many token ring LANs while minimizing the number of new routers they must buy. High-speed connections can be established between groups of token rings in a high-rise building or across a campus over an FDDI backbone. Serial interface modules such as Cisco's high-speed serial interface (HSSI) then can be used to connect such token ring clusters to other token rings in remote locations" (see figure).

Fastest Token Ring Bridge/Router

For enterprise networking protocols such as TCP/IP and IPX, Listwin added, the Multiport Token Ring Card is the fastest token ring router available today. The card supports all Cisco IBM internetworking features, including translational and source- route transparent bridging between token rings and Ethernets, SDLC-to-token ring media conversion, and local termination of token ring (LLC2) sessions.

The Cisco Multiport Token Ring Card, configurable for two or four ports, includes IBM's 16/4-Mbps token ring mini-card with an embedded performance-enhanced interface driver co-developed by Cisco and IBM, a 16.7-MHz bit-slice processor, and direct memory access components. Multiple cards can communicate with each other and with Cisco's FDDI, T3/E3 and Multiport Ethernet interfaces over the AGS+'s internal cBus at the rate of 533 Mbps. The card also is fully interoperable with Cisco's other router interface cards for comprehensive LAN/WAN internetworking.


Available beginning in October, the Cisco Multiport Token Ring card isU.S. list-priced at $9,500 in a two-port configuration and at $16,000 in afour-port configuration. The two-port configuration can be upgraded tofour ports for $5,500.

Cisco Systems, Inc., is the leading global supplier of high- performance, multimedia and multiprotocol internetworking products, including routers, bridges, communication servers and router management software. Cisco technology can be used to build enterprise-wide networks linking an unlimited number of geographically dispersed LANs. Cisco is publicly traded over-the- counter under the NASDAQ symbol CSCO.

Posted: Dec 15 13:36:32 1992