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News Update :: Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Contracts, Deals, Awards

VCU Awards IBM $14M Deal for Digital Telephony

Virginia Commonwealth University awarded a $14 million contract to IBM for a digital telephony system designed to improve performance and lower costs for the university and its medical center. The solution uses a mix of voice-over IP and traditional PBX technology.

IBM will work with VCU to update and replace its traditional telephony environment with a single consolidated network to handle voice, video, and data traffic. Officials said the approach makes it easier to manage, support, and maintain the 17,000 phone lines that span the two university campuses and the Virginia Commonwealth University Health System.

“After looking at our outdated telephony system, its related expenses, and limitations on the services we could provide – we knew it was time to make a major change,” said Mark D. Willis, VCU’s CIO. Willis said the new system would “(meet) our needs today, but can easily scale to support future growth – all for less than what we’ve been paying for the old system.” The digital system will allow VCU telecom staff to respond to customer service and change orders rapidly, officials said. They said the VCU Health System’s call center ops will also improve dramatically...

For more information, click here.

Indiana U. Fortifies Its High Speed Switching Infrastructure

Indiana University said it would upgrade its high speed Internet infrastructure in a deal with Force 10 Networks. IU will buy the firm’s TeraScale switches and routers to support its AVIDD and Big Red supercomputer clusters, as well as university’s Data Capacitor, which provides researchers across the nation temporary massive data storage.

“To support broad research initiatives across our campuses, as well as within the TeraGrid project, we needed an infrastructure that could deliver the flexibility and scalability that would allow us to interconnect our computing clusters as well as enable us to build new ones,” said Matt Davy, IU’s chief network engineer. He said Force 10’s 16-port 10 Gigabit Ethernet cards “give us the flexibility to reconfigure our network as research projects demand without complicating the architecture, while providing the scalability to add more computing capacity.”

The Force10 TeraScale E-Series and the state of Indiana’s I-Light network form the foundation of the high performance 10 Gigabit Ethernet network that connects IU’s Indianapolis and Bloomington campuses, which are 55 miles apart...

For more information, click here.

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