Slideshow

How much do you know about Cisco?

Test your Cisco news knowledge.

  • 13. Which wireless device maker did Cisco consider buying in 2005? Cisco CEO John Chambers considered buying BlackBerry maker Research in Motion in 2005 but decided against it because he didn't want Cisco to be selling consumer devices, according to Forbes Magazine's September cover story on Cisco. The article charts the moves of Chambers whose bonus check in 2002 was a mere 38 cents - a reflection of Cisco's stock plummeting to US$10 during the dot-com crash.
  • 2. What did officials from Cisco and a California transportation authority launch onto the streets of San Francisco in February?
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  • 6. Why did Cisco's former legal eagle, IP director Rick Frenkel get Cisco into legal hot water and subsequently change the way Cisco workers can blog?
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  • 4. What has Cisco promised it will do every March and September?
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  • 12. Why is Cisco asking its certification candidates to say 'Cheese'?
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  • 13. Which wireless device maker did Cisco consider buying in 2005?
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  • 3. For which product launch did Cisco partner with a bunny, Cupid and a unicorn?
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  • 8. What did a Cisco VP reveal at Interop Las Vegas that she shouldn't have?
    Cisco VP of Network Systems and Security Marketing Marie Hattar let slip that a campus switching overhaul is in the works, under the code-name "Big Bang". It came about as Jim Duffy asked if Cisco has a "big bang" in store for the campus portfolio similar to product overhauls earlier in 2008 in the data center and edge router lines. "Big Bang," replied a jolted Hattar, "is a code name we have for an upcoming launch." Hattar thought Duffy had caught wind of the code name and project ahead of time. He did not. However, Hattar was a little more tight-lipped at December's Cisco C-Scape analyst conference when asked about whether Cisco will be coming out with a blade server, as has been reported.
  • So you think you know Cisco? Did you pay attention to Cisco news in 2008? Test your knowledge with our "How much do you know about Cisco" quiz!

  • 7. In which CEO list did Cisco's John Chambers beat Apple's Steve Jobs and Google's Eric Schmidt, but trailed behind Oracle's Larry Ellison and Sprint Nextel's Gary Forsee?
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  • 4. What has Cisco promised it will do every March and September?
    Cisco said it would begin issuing IOS security advisories on the fourth Wednesday of the month in March and September of each calendar year. Cisco said the change will provide predictability to its customers, but the long wait between cycles had some security bloggers puzzled.
  • 11. Why is 21.58 such a hated figure at Cisco?
    21.58 is the US dollar amount to which Cisco's stock fell mid-year. By the closing bell on July 9, Cisco's stock had slipped 5.7 percent to US$21.58, hitting a new 52-week low. The stock had been unpopular with investors in July, and had shed about one-third of its value since hitting a 7-year high in November 2007.
  • 1. What product did Cisco discontinue in July and replace with its ASA 5500 appliances?
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  • 3. For which product launch did Cisco partner with a bunny, Cupid and a unicorn?
    Cisco teased the market with a viral marketing campaign for the launch of its ASR 1000 product. A few weeks before the launch on March 4, Cisco had geeks in the blogosphere (well, two that we noticed) cooing over the Cisco promo that featured five characters, Easter Bunny, The Stork, Santa, Unicorn, and Cupid. Cisco in October used another viral campaign featuring bumbling reporter Ira Pumfkin to tease customers about the launch of the ASR 9000. What will be the big tease that Cisco will use for its next ASR product?
  • 14. Which cabinet-level position was Cisco CEO John Chambers apparently in the running for?
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  • 15. Which new Cisco learning program has proved to be very provocative in the training industry?
    Cisco in October launched its Cisco 360 Learning Program for CCIE designed to run head-on against third-party boot camps, which Cisco says are not up to par. Independent CCIE training labs, IPexpert and Internetwork Expert publicly detailed the reasons why they declined to join 360, and why they believe the program is flawed.
  • 7. In which CEO list did Cisco's John Chambers beat Apple's Steve Jobs and Google's Eric Schmidt, but trailed behind Oracle's Larry Ellison and Sprint Nextel's Gary Forsee?
    In the list of "What network CEOs really make". Chambers earned a US$350,096 salary and US$3.5 million bonus in Cisco's fiscal 2007 year. A little more than US$7.1 million in option awards and US$7,677 in other compensation upped his total compensation to US$11 million. But that was nothing compared to the US$40 million total compensation in 2007 for Forsee. Though he did beat Jobs' US$1 compensation, and Schmidt's US$480,561 check.
  • 15. Which new Cisco learning program has proved to be very provocative in the training industry?
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  • 10. Which Cisco exec's departure in May signalled an end of an era?
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  • 12. Why is Cisco asking its certification candidates to say 'Cheese'?
    Once described by Cisco as an "isolated problem" the network giant made its biggest move yet to stamp out exam cheating. Beginning August 1, candidates began receiving preliminary score reports imprinted with their photos and unique authentication codes, among other measures. According to Cisco "exam results and other testing data will be continuously analyzed by forensic software to detect aberrant testing behavior and to flag suspect exams for further investigation."
  • 5. Why was there an Eclipse at Cisco?
    Cisco in March joined the open source Eclipse Foundation. According to the Eclipse membership roster at the time, Cisco was the only networking gear maker in the ranks, which is mostly made up of software vendors. Cisco said it would back Tigerstripe, a project to build software to enable carriers to develop next-gen networks. But Cisco's open source stripes caught a snag when in December, it was sued by the Free Software Foundation for alleged copyright infringement.
  • 11. Why is 21.58 such a hated figure at Cisco?
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  • 10. Which Cisco exec's departure in May signalled an end of an era?
    The resignation of Jayshree Ullal, a 15-year Cisco veteran who left her role as senior vice president of Data Center, Switching and Services, signalled the changing of the old networking guard as Cisco morphs into an IT company. Some observers indicated that Ullal wasn't happy with Cisco's committee-driven CDO councils that risk lengthening the time to market for Cisco products. Her departure followed that of other high-profile senior execs, including Chief Development Officer Charlie Giancarlo and Senior Vice President Mike Volpi. Ullal is now CEO of data center switching firm Arista Networks.
  • 2. What did officials from Cisco and a California transportation authority launch onto the streets of San Francisco in February?
    Cisco's Connected Bus is developed with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency for its Muni bus service. The bus offers touch screens that provide real-time NextMuni information and wait times, free wireless, and external LEDs to tell motorists and pedestrians about the environmental benefits of the bus. In the future, the bus will sport technology to reduce vehicle collisions, traffic signal priority to help drivers avoid congestion, onboard video and audio entertainment for passengers.
  • 8. What did a Cisco VP reveal at Interop Las Vegas that she shouldn't have?
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  • 1. What product did Cisco discontinue in July and replace with its ASA 5500 appliances?
    July 28 was the last day you could buy Cisco's PIX firewall line as the company killed it in favor of pushing its two-year-old ASA 5500 appliances. The ASA 5500s support firewall and VPN just like PIX but with better performance and VoIP security. They also have modules for antivirus, antispam, antiphishing and URL filtering.
  • How did you do? So are you a Cisco cub or a Cisco commander?

  • 9. Which security and virtualization vendor was Cisco rumored to be buying?
    Pundits had a sweet time speculating that a marriage between Cisco and EMC was in the air. What unites them? Cisco owns a 7.1 percent stake in VMware and EMC owns 84 percent, Cisco's lead in SAN switches matches EMC's lead in storage boxes, and Cisco is due another big buy.
  • 6. Why did Cisco's former legal eagle, IP director Rick Frenkel get Cisco into legal hot water and subsequently change the way Cisco workers can blog?
    Former Cisco patent lawyer Rick Frenkel was forced to out himself as author of the blog Patent Troll Tracker, a vocal critic of so-called patent trolls, a derogatory term for companies that acquire and license intellectual property and assert them in court to win damages from vendor companies. The outing soon led to individuals filing lawsuits against him and Cisco for alleged defamation. Later, Cisco updated its employee blogging policy, which requires workers to reveal their identity in blogs and comments.
  • 5. Why was there an Eclipse at Cisco?
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  • 9. Which security and virtualization vendor was Cisco rumored to be buying?
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  • 14. Which cabinet-level position was Cisco CEO John Chambers apparently in the running for?
    If Chambers had any political ambitions, which some pundits believe he does, those dreams were shattered when Sen. John McCain lost the presidential election. It was widely reported that Chambers' name was the first to be mentioned by the once-presidential hopeful when asked about potential new treasury secretaries in a new administration.
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