Quick Alert: Avaya’s Fire Sale Purchase vs. Cisco’s “Toaster Box”

Avaya is the latest to enter the next generation data center fight with their one-box-data-center strategy.  Avaya’s strategy is based upon the VSP 9000 switch that Avaya acquired from the great Nortel fire sale of 2009.  Confidence is high at Avaya as their Vice President and General Manager of data center solutions, Steven Bandrowczak, calls Cisco’s UCS a “toaster box” solution.

However, someone needs to remind Avaya that the Nortel VSP 9000 was announced on May 19, 2009 at Interop as an alternative to the Cisco Nexus 7000.  Note: The Cisco Nexus 7000 is currently shipping. The 9000 is built off their 8600 software running on Nortel’s Carrier Grade Linux coupled with a fully programmable network processor.  The last time I checked, UCS is lot more than a Nexus 7000 switch.

It’s a good thing Avaya is going to follow Nortel’s strategy of selling to existing Nortel switch customers because I don’t see Cisco, HP, or Juniper customers jumping ship to the untested combination of Avaya/Nortel.  Anyone remember the Cajun switch?

As far as the “toaster box” comment, if you don’t have something nice to say then…  It’s a bit revealing that as of today, Avaya has no intention of entering the other two pillars of the next generation strategy; namely servers or storage.  Instead, Avaya will rely on the status quo via other vendors to handle these issues.  Not very UCS or Converged Infrastructure like is it?

Avaya can take refuge in the fact that they have a formidable Communications Software Business, but they need to seek shelter in the battle for the next generation data center.  Of course, they have $900 million reasons to do otherwise.

2009: We Fooled You

As 2009 comes to a close, below is my very incomplete list of top “we fooled you” moments of 2009.

  • Cloud Computing trumps everything
  • Virtualization renders the OS irrelevant
  • Google “does no evil”
  • Cisco can’t grow or compete
  • Outsourcing isn’t forever
  • Chrome is better than Firefox or IE
  • Storm / Android beats the iPhone
  • Bobby (Foundry) would never sell
  • Huawei will falter
  • HP can’t catch IBM
  • IBM wouldn’t get back into networking equipment
  • Sun is dead
  • Open Source Software kills ISVs
  • Open Source Hardware dominates storage
  • Free Software – LOL
  • PBT vs. MPLS
  • Nortel would be saved
  • Web vs. traditional advertising
  • Juniper would never enter switching
  • Oracle is just a database company
  • Apple vs. Microsoft
  • Dell doesn’t care about services
  • IPOs are dead
  • Facebook is a fad
  • LTE is years away
  • Cisco UCS crushes HP, IBM, Dell, and more.
  • Business Intelligence wars would end
  • IPv6 – enough said
  • All start-ups need traditional VCs
  • Internet / IP Security is solid
  • Google Apps ends the need for Microsoft Office
  • Yahoo is dead
  • Linux Desktop vs. Apple and Microsoft

2009 was both an exciting and frustrating year for technology.  The battle lines are drawn for 2010 and I’m looking forward to a great and surprising year.

Happy New Year!