Dell expands switch business

Dell has announced the expansion of its line of configurable PowerConnect switches due in July.

Dell has announced the expansion of its line of configurable PowerConnect switches due in July.

The company will add to its line of small to midsize enterprise workgroup switches to include the PowerConnect 5224, 3048, and 3248. The family of switches also includes the 3024, 5012, 2024, and 2016, which were introduced last September.

The 3248 is a standalone switch that has 48 10/100 Fast Ethernet ports and 2 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet uplinks. The 3048 has the same number of ports, yet is stackable. The 3248 switch also features Layer 3 and Layer 4 capability and four priority queues for classifying different types of traffic.

Another managed switch, the PowerConnect 5224, another managed switch that will compete with switches from 3Com, Cisco and Foundry Networks. The 5224 has 24 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet ports and is aimed at large enterprises, which Dell defines as 3,500 employees or less. The 5224 switch features Layer 3 capabilities and four priority queues.

The three switches are expected to be available from Dell by July 2002, said Kim Crawford, vice-president of networking for Dell.

Crawford believes that all sizes of enterprises will soon need workgroup switches with Gigabit uplinks.

Research data predicts IP traffic will grow by 80% year on year.

Crawford explained that the lines of switches are to be used to connect PCs to servers within a LAN. In addition to the managed lines of switches, which can be configured via the Web or with a traditional Command Line Interface (CLI), Dell also introduces two unmanaged switches in February that are described as "plug and play".

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