The good ship “Brocade”…. Huh?

In Beth Pariseau’s article All aboard the good ship Brocade she tells of Brocade’s desperate attempt to gain *SOME* visibility by sponsoring a woman’s very worthy cause – to row a specially designed boat across the Pacific to raise awareness of plastics pollution in the oceans.

I think you can sum this entire campaign up in one word.


BrocData has been losing market share to Cisco in wholesale fashion for quite some time now.  I’ve been working in the data storage industry for around 10 years now and I can’t remember in the last 3 installing a single Brocade switch…or McData for that matter. (save maybe for the embedded McData switches in an IBM Bladecenter – and technically I didn’t install those)

I agree with you – you have to applaud the sponsoree for her hard work and determination….but Brocade is really reaching on this one.

After all, you can still root for the Yankees despite your feelings about George Steinbrenner, right?

Ok, maybe *THAT* was a reach.


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    • on August 31, 2007 at 9:14 am
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    Same boat here, just migrated off 2 brocade fabrics to cisco. Actually, I like it better. But I’m wanting desperately to test the new qlogic switches. Anyone got any love with one yet?

  1. I used to be *THE* QLogic guy. When I was working for MTI, back before they finally caved under the the pressure of trying to compete with EMC, MTI used to put QLogic switches into their cabinets.

    QLogic was a *FAR* superior switch at the time, their ASIC’s were faster, more solid, their boot time made brocade switches look like they were standing still.

    But then GLogic lost the marketing battle, and Brocade became the standard.

    Microsoft isn’t a superior operating system, but they’ve got a great marketing department.

    • on September 1, 2007 at 2:47 am
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    I’ve been involved in several migrations and installs at some VERY large EMC clients in the past year or so. If they are not already Cisco clients, they were in the process of becoming one in the SAN environment.
    The only one that has resisted is outsourced to another very large outsourcing firm who would rather hire 3 more people overseas to manage the 20 some departmental switches with 1 core per fabric at each of the 4 sites than go to a newer, easier to manage environment.
    The funny thing is, I remember installing the 20 or so DS-class switches 5 years ago. I heard that the Core was installed 2 years ago. At that rate, they will buy Cisco 5 years from now.

    Oh yeah, the environment is all McData. My guess is there is a better margin for the EMC sales guy on those compared to Cisco. I last worked on a Brocade 1.5 years ago and 5 clients ago.

    • on September 1, 2007 at 8:11 am
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    EMC is pushing quite hard for all sales to move towards cisco, not sure why.

    • on September 1, 2007 at 11:41 am
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    Q still sell a pretty good product. But as others have said, they lost the marketing game. And with cisco moving in, they’re going to have a hard time anywhere besides video editing.

  2. Cisco is great for shops with an established Cisco staff, because the concepts and command structures are largely unchanged. Once you whiteboard soft-zoning for them they are almost perfectly capable of running a basic infrastructure.

    My guess is EMC is using this to put SAN’s into environments that probably would have remained direct-attached had they needed to hire or train someone on a whole new technology. The of course once EMC is in an environment, they spread like a virus. 😉

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