The show opens as the much-anticipated update for Novell's NetWare starts shipping. The launch of NetWare 6.0, the long-standing networking operating system, comes at a difficult time for the company as it starts to offer services based around its eDirectory directory services product.
Novell is not alone in trying to launch new products into a difficult market. The slowdown in corporate IT spending has meant users are finding it harder to justify expenditure on cutting-edge technologies such as wireless networking and mobile networks.
This means there will be a premium on deploying appropriate levels of technology for a particular job and getting maximum value for money from investments.
Jim Takach, executive director of advanced programmes for the CDMA Development Group, the telecoms standards body, will be speaking on bandwidth issues for mobile networks at N+I.
2.5G technologies promise performance as high as 115 Kbps on both GSM and CDMA networks; 3G will offer 144Kbps and even greater throughput. Takach will discuss the level of performance that will actually be available, covering the rollout plans of the carriers and the steps network managers need to take to integrate 2.5G and 3G systems with current and planned applications.
Among the launches at the show will be MobileModem from Motient, a modem designed to provide wireless email access for Palm V users. According to the company's literature "the MobileModem is always on, automatically 'waking up' with each incoming message".
WiredRed plans to unveil its e/pop Linux Server at N+I in a bid to bring secure and scalable instant messaging to the Linux environment. It also plans to extend support beyond Microsoft NT domains and Novell NDS to lightweight directory access protocol and Microsoft's ADS directories. The company claims e/pop 3.0 is the only enterprise-level instant messaging software that enables companies to use established network directories for managing messaging.
Asita Technologies is showcasing its GS2 system, which the company claims is twice as fast as anything on the market. Asita asserts the GS2 integrates a high-performance VPN, firewall, networking, policy routing, load balancing and powerful centralised management onto a single network device.
IP Metrics is expected to unveil NIC Express 3.0 and claims the software is able to re-route data traffic intelligently around physical and logical faults. The company says the software creates redundant data paths between all server and workstation network endpoints, ensuring non-stop data flow across the network.
Having launched a global reseller programme at the end of August, network tools company NetTasking will be showcasing its new Max V3.1 infrastructure management software in Atlanta. The new tools are designed to provide network managers with metrics across networks, servers, databases, applications and websites.
Other product announcements include network technology from Surgient Networks, Captus Networks and Avaya.
Surgient Networks is releasing its Deterministic Adapting Switching architecture at the show. It claims the product will converge critical functions from key networking, computing and storage elements into a single, multi-application, scalable and open platform. Surgient's offering is already receiving rave reviews from industry leaders and analysts who recognise the potential of solving bottleneck and provisioning problems from the disk to the WAN edge.
Captus Networks, a specialist in prevention of denial of service and distributed denial of service attacks, is unveiling a number of security products and upgrades this week, while Avaya is set to demonstrate the new Avaya 10G Ethernet Switch. The new device is designed to help enterprises make the most of their business by expanding their infrastructure bandwidth.