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July 27, 1988

IBM PREPARES 16M-BPS, 100M-BPS TOKEN RING LOCAL NETS

By CBR Staff Writer

IBM is preparing a 16Mbit-per-second version of the Token Ring local area network for September or October announcement, following it with a fibre optic version running at 100Mbits-per second for around 1990, according to Computerwoche. The West German weekly says that the company recently invited a hand picked group of analysts and market researchers to its Raleigh based communications headquarters, where it indicated that the 16M-bit version would require either four-wire or fibre optic cabling where many users are running the 4M-bit Token Ring over twisted pair; like its slower sister, it will support up to 260 active workstations and may offer a gateway into Ethernet. Keen to turn the emerging Fibre Distributed Data Interface or FDDI standard to its advantage, IBM is setting its 1990 sights on a 100M-bit fibre optic network. IBM reportedly will make its high speed network compatible with whatever standard comes out of the ANSI X3T9.5 FDDI committee, and looks to support up to 500 stations on it. It is looking at two implementations, a Class A broadband fibre optic dual ring capable of running at up to 200M bits-per-second, and a 100Mbit-per-second Class B variant, which would also have two fibre optic rings, the second being used for security back-up.

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