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Look for integration points
Cisco is driving convergence with products and software, like the Nexus product line and NX-OS operating system, which combines storage networking SAN-OS and IOS into a single interface. The company's recently announced Nexus 1000 virtual switch resides in the hypervisor and replaces the VMware virtual switch. It's also controlled by NX-OS. You can expect Brocade, with its acquisition of Foundry Networks, to follow suit with a combined OS and single console to manage the storage and data network.
The big picture
| new model. Yes, there are products available and there's some testing taking place, but it's certainly not too late to get up to speed. This year, dedicate time to learning about FCoE and meeting with vendors that supply this technology. Think of 2009 as the year to kick the tires. More advanced companies may start limited production deployments and by 2010-2011 most data centers should be on board with converged networks. The question, however, is: Will you be?
This was first published in November 2008