As expected, McData Corp. acknowledged Monday that it will discontinue Computer Network Technology Corp.'s (CNT) director switches -- the UltraNet Multi-service Director (UMD) and FC 9000 -- in favor of its own i10K and 6140 products.The clarification on the road map comes five months after McData announced the acquisition of CNT for $235 million in January 2005. "The two products, the UMD versus the i10K, were the source of the majority of product overlap and customer uncertainty," said Dan Renouard, analyst with Robert W Baird & Co., in a note to investors.
McData officials said the reasons for continuing the i10K over the UMD were business-oriented rather than technical. "It would take us several months to get the UMD to the same point of integration with the rest of McData's products … and the i10K has a larger number of OEM partners than the UMD," Morris said. He admitted that the downside to letting go of the UMD was losing its quality of service capability, which enabled users to prioritize data. He expects this feature will eventually make it into the i10K.As far as the FC 9000 goes, this was a much older technology and had significantly fewer customers than McData's 6140, according to Morris. He said that at some point McData will rationalize its edge switching products, but right now plans to keep both companies' lines, as McData supports IFCP while CNT supports FCIP. "We'll keep both for now to offer customers the choice." Software integration and services
Post acquisition, McData will begin the work of integrating CNT's management software into its Enterprise Fabric Connectivity Manager (EFCM) suite. By January 2006 it expects to have integrated SANavigator, SANpilot and SANvergence into this suite, too. EFCM will be offered in three configurations: basic, standard and enterprise.McData plans to use CNT's services expertise to "become more intimate with its customers," Morris said. Behind this strategy is the need to create more channels to market than just its OEM model and to better compete with Cisco, which has strong account control. Analysts were upbeat about the proposed integration plans, but noted that McData must now execute on them. Click here for more of today's news.