David Turner, vice president of technical operations at MobiTV Inc., a leading provider of video to mobile devices in Emeryville, Calif., is evaluating the Nexus 5000 to complement the firm's MDS 9509 directors to lower costs and take advantage of copper cabling. "I decided to move off Brocade to Cisco for the sole purpose of taking advantage of the modularity of the MDS switches. It's much more cost-effective to get to the next version with the Cisco platform. Unlike Brocade, it doesn't require expensive forklift upgrades," Turner said.

Fernando Mejia, senior manager of IT infrastructure at the Independent Purchasing Cooperative (IPCoop) Inc., the purchasing arm of the Subway franchise in Miami, acquired a Cisco Nexus 7000 instead of a Catalyst 6500 because of its high performance, scalability and the ability to replace his stackable Brocade FC switches once FCoE becomes available.

Maturing directors

Regardless of whose product you choose, both platforms will reliably power your SAN, which is confirmed by the myriad storage-area networks currently powered by Brocade and Cisco. Both vendors are embracing the converged Ethernet paradigm in their product roadmaps, but unless you're willing to debug the initial CEE/DCE flaws as an early adopter, you're well advised to wait for at least another year until the standard and products have matured.

BIO: Jacob Gsoedl is a freelance writer and a corporate director for business systems. He can

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be reached at jgsoedl@yahoo.com.

This was first published in June 2009

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