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Independent Competitive Tests Show IBM Best at Routing e-business Network Traffic; Sets New Record

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RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C - 26 May 1999: . . .Test results from independent consultants The Tolly Group show IBM's high-performance network routing products established a new record -- more than 1,000 transactions per second -- in a high-demand environment requiring extremely fast responses.

The tests showed that in an e-business environment, where traditional mainframe data and applications are connected to Web-based technologies, IBM's high-performance routing products processed transactions up to 77 percent faster and are as low as one-third the cost of similar offerings from Cisco Systems.

A transaction is any exchange of computer information, such as checking a bank balance, ordering a book or a visiting a Web site. Demands for information rise dramatically as more businesses become e-businesses, and speed and the cost of meeting those demands are becoming increasingly important issues. The test conducted by The Tolly Group measured the ability to transfer data between the server and the network.

This is the second time in as many years that The Tolly Group's independent test results have demonstrated IBM's high-performance routing products beating Cisco in a head-to-head comparison.

"IBM has established itself as the leader in providing customers with e-business solutions that connect enterprise data and applications to Web-based technologies -- an environment where a fast, reliable and economical network infrastructure is essential," said Jim Goethals, enterprise solutions product market manager , IBM's Networking Hardware Division. "These test results from The Tolly Group demonstrate that customers depending on mission-critical, high-volume host-to-Web connectivity to drive their e-business initiatives -- like banking, stock transfers and airline reservations -- can rely on IBM to provide the best routing solutions available."

Intensive Testing Proves IBM Performance
Testing was conducted in a TN3270E server environment supporting 16,000 sessions via Fast Ethernet and both LSA and MPC+/CMPC protocols, with IBM Network Utility and 2216 Multiaccess Connector significantly outperforming Cisco's 7507 with CIP2 for PC-to-host network connections. The tests were designed to measure the maximum transactions per second with sub-second response time, when supporting thousands of simultaneous sessions, reflective of many applications that are critical to e-business success. Profiles reflected various types of interactive queries, from data entry to large applications. For more information on the how the testing was conducted and the results, please visit The Tolly Group Web site at, document # 199115.

"Pure transaction processing throughput alone doesn't tell the entire story when evaluating high-performance network routing products," said Kevin Tolly, president and CEO of The Tolly Group. "Both price and performance have become critical factors when analyzing TN3270E server implementations. IBM has addressed this issue with the 2216 and Network Utility."

IBM Earns Superior Marks for Load Balancing
Reliable load balancing is a necessity for today's e-business driven networks. The Tolly Group put IBM's 2216 and Network Utility through rigorous tests to gauge load balancing and failover capabilities. Using the 2216 with Network Dispatcher, which offers load-balancing capabilities among multiple servers, The Tolly Group confirmed that the IBM products re-routed traffic to another server path within one second when the connection to the host was severed. Network Dispatcher is available as an embedded feature on the 2216 and is also part of IBM's WebSphere Performance Pack software.

The Tolly Group's report also stated that IBM's solution balanced network traffic between two TN3270E servers, roughly doubling the number of transactions per second compared to single-gateway solutions.

Contact(s) information

Alise McNeill

Jay Cadmus