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New Cisco products target IBM remote access, easing migration to client/server applications.

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 14, 1994--Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) has introduced a series of hardware and software products designed to give customers in IBM-oriented remote branch offices a comprehensive, flexible set of solutions for gaining access to corporate internetworks.

The new products (detailed in separate press releases) implement Cisco's strategy for achieving effective IBM remote access, paving flexible migration paths to emerging client- server applications through functionality supporting LAN-to-LAN connectivity, legacy protocols, access to SNA networks via public WAN services, and flexible access to mainframe-based SNA applications.

"This is the most significant set of IBM-related announcements Cisco has made since we outlined our original five- phase IBM internetworking program in early 1991," said Nick Francis, Cisco's director of IBM internetworking. "While other vendors have targeted point products at isolated parts of the IBM remote-access arena, Cisco provides the only comprehensive, integrated systems solution that addresses branch offices' need for consolidation, flexibility, manageability and cost control. "With this combination of hardware platforms and enhancements to our Internetwork Operating System [IOS], we are mapping out a clear path to the applications of the future -- without leaving legacy applications behind."

New Products Target Array of IBM Remote Access Issues

Cisco has announced a set of interrelated products that address different aspects of IBM remote access. They include:

-- Three new products that let remote branch offices in IBM installations access SNA host computers more efficiently and inexpensively via frame relay and X.25 public networks. Cisco has added two software features to its IOS: support in SNA environments for RFC 1490, the industry standard for encapsulating SNA and multiple protocols over frame relay; and support for IBM's Qualified Logical Link Control (QLLC) protocol, used by SNA devices to connect over an X.25 network. In addition, the Cisco frame relay access device (CFRAD) is Cisco's first serial-only platform tailored for users migrating from SDLC to frame relay networks.

-- The new Native Client Interface Architecture (NCIA), which extends Cisco's Internetworking Operating System all the way to the desktop, providing access to SNA applications through the simpler and more flexible TCP/IP protocol. NCIA will be implemented as an option in third-party SNA host access software products; Wall Data, under a new agreement with Cisco, will be the first SNA client software vendor to support NCIA. Cisco has also introduced Downstream Physical Unit (DSPU) concentration, a software feature that enables routers to handle the physical unit concentration functions normally performed by SNA-LAN gateways.

-- Router support for the Binary Synchronous Communication (BSC or "bisync") data-link protocol. This feature, which will enable users to consolidate bisync traffic with LAN and SDLC traffic, is of particular interest to the banking industry, which uses bisync extensively to transmit data from remote automated teller machines (ATMs) to corporate mainframes. Banks now can dispense with dedicated bisync facilities and use their existing internetworks for ATM-to-mainframe communication.

Cisco Systems, Inc., headquartered in San Jose, Calif., is the leading global supplier of internetworking products, including routers, bridges, workgroup systems, ATM and Ethernet switches, dial-up access servers, software routers and router management software. These products are used to build enterprise-wide internetworks linking an unlimited number of geographically dispersed LANs, WANs and IBM SNA networks. Cisco's Internetwork Operating System (IOS) technology, found in more than 250,000 installed Cisco units and in the products of over 20 partners, is the de facto industry standard for data transmission. In the United States, Cisco is traded over the counter under the Nasdaq symbol CSCO. A member of the S&P 500 and Fortune 500, Cisco in fiscal 1994 logged sales of $1.2 billion.

CONTACT: Cisco Systems, San Jose
 Jacqueline Brinker, 408/526-7598
 Ulevich & Orrange, Inc.
 William Orrange or Janis Ulevich, 415/329-1590
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Nov 14, 1994
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