I am attending the Interop Tradeshow (formerly Network World) in New York City this week. This give me a great opportunity to see some amazing products, speak with the vendors, and meet other networker.
One of the many interesting products I ran across is the Imagestream Linux router and the thought of them taking on “the giant” – Cisco Systems.
Imagestream has taken Linux and created a lot of their own code to go around it. They take that then commericial product and put it on hardware. Imagestream then markets and sells these full hardware routers.
One thing that impressed me was that Imagestream sells these hardware routers all the way from their small box (called the Envoy) running at about $500, on up to their huge enterprise box (costing, obviously much much more). Still, their $500 smallest box is a great small branch office router. It it tiny (about 4lbs) but it still offers QoS, RIP, OSPF, BGP, firewall, SNMP, and more. It comes with 3 Ethernet ports and you can add a 1 or 2 port T1/E1 module. This would allow you to have a full router, with enterprise grade software features, for under $1000. This is probably a third of the cost of a comparable Cisco.
Here are a couple of links to product reviews for Imagestream’s router line:
Take a look at the feature of of even their lowest end router:
High-performance Linux kernel
Scalable Inetics™ platform
CALEA intercept support
On-line & off-line upgrades
Local and remote logging
Quality of Service (QoS)
Peer-to-peer traffic control
PPP, Cisco HDLC and frame relay
MLPPP and MLFR and IMA
PPPoE and PPPoA
RIP & OSPF
SNMP or NetFlow® accounting
NAT firewall (1:1 & 1:many)
NTP clock synchronization
Concurrent bridging & routing
Secure telnet (ssh) v.2
L2TP, GRE, IPIP & CIPE tunneling
DHCP client & server
IPSec & SSL VPN
Not that I am trying to sway everyone away from Cisco by talking first about Vyatta then about Imagestream, but I just find it fascinating that there are such great Linux-based options out there for routers today!
I think that Imagestream’s products deserve a second look. I am going to do that and I hope that you will too.
All the best to you,
David Davis, CCIE, VCP, CISSP
Personal Website: HappyRouter.com – home of Cisco how-to articles & videos
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