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Networking giant Cisco is preparing to enter the server market, putting it on a collision course with traditional partners like Dell, HP and IBM.
Cisco will release a server with bundled virtualisation software within months, The New York Times reports today. Currently, Cisco’s core business revolves around its domination of the $US40 billion market in routers and switches, which control network pipes and are complementary to servers.
But slowing router business has already seen the company diversify into new product lines.
Last year, Cisco ramped up its unified communications and collaboration software offerings, putting it head-to-head with Microsoft, a former partner in the space.
Rivals had no immediate comment, but the three largest players in the $US50 billion server market – Dell, HP and IBM – may position themselves to offer more business to Cisco’s key competitor, the smaller Juniper Networks, as well as pumping up their in-house initiatives, such as HP’s ProCurve line of routers.