IBM gets access to Internet2 backbone

IBM on Wednesday became the first corporate partner to be approved to connect to the Abilene, which will serve as the backbone network for Internet2.

IBM will be connecting several of its research facilities using Abilene, including the company's Yorktown Heights, New York, and Almaden, California labs. In so doing IBM will also be able to work with other leading Internet2 research labs in trying to sculpt the first advanced Internet applications, such as middleware products to govern traffic over high-speed networks and a range of different applications that will tightly integrate video, audio, and voice.

"Working with the Internet2 community, we will be building more powerful applications that will be feasible only on a backbone like Abilene," said John Patrick, vice president in charge of IBM's Internet technology. "We hope this will lead customers into the next era of e-business as these applications migrate over to the commercial Internet."

IBM has spent more than $US5.6 million to date in supporting the universities that are participating in the Internet2 initiative. The company has had an influence in shaping the Internet2 Distributed Storage Infrastructure initiative as well as the Internet2 Digital Video Network projects.

Abilene's primary purpose is to support Internet2 development of broadband applications and engineering management tools for research and education. The backbone began operation in January.

More information about Internet2 can be found at www.internet2.edu

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