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Electronic Design

Multiport Ethernet Switch Embraces Full Security, IPv6 Routing, And WLAN

More VoIP phones. More wireless access point connections. These factors are putting ever-more pressure on Ethernet local-area networks (LANs). Now, Broadcom's 500 series super switch chip will enable future Ethernet switches to handle the convergence of voice, video, and data.

The Broadcom StrataXGS III family's five latest members feature different port counts and functionality. The series flagship, the BCM56504, boasts 24 Gbit Ethernet (GbE) and four 10-Gbit Ethernet (10GbE) ports. This configuration makes it easy for network switch manufacturers to make boxes with full stacking capability.

Each GbE port can operate in the 10/100/1000-Mbit/s mode. Also, each 10GbE port can be used for networking switching via CX-4-compliant XAUI interfaces or in a stacking mode using the company's HiGig+ interface/protocol between boxes at up to 12 Gbits/s. The BCM56504 is based on a 72-Gbit/s packet processor that can process data at over 100 million packets/s.

Key features include security, IPv6 routing, and wireless-LAN support. The chip integrates full encryption using AES, DES, 3DES, and other algorithms that comply with the FIPS 140-2 standard. Its integrated denial-of-service (DoS) attack-prevention technology provides continuity of service to users in case of an attack.

The BCM56504 supports the larger IPv6 addressing capability, too, which will simplify future migration from IPv4. Both the IPv4 and IPv6 routing capabilities are fully integrated. The chip also provides hardware and software to support the expanding wireless extensions to the LAN. It seamlessly integrates wired and wireless functions and eliminates the need for expensive external appliances when setting up and managing a wireless network.

Also, the BCM56504 interfaces with the control CPU via a 32-bit 66-MHz PCI bus. It uses I2C serial control to communicate with external devices like serial EEPROM and flash memory. Now sampling to current customers, production is expected later this year. The BCM56504 should cost about $495 in 10,000-unit lots.

Broadcom Corp.

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