Brocade has launched a multi-blade switch aimed at bringing enterprise class technology to smaller businesses.

The DCX 4S is a four-blade-slot version of the 384-port, 8Gbit/s DCX chassis switch.

"It uses the same blades as the larger model," said Paul Phillips, Brocade's sales director for UK and Ireland, "but the chassis is half the price, making it a cost-effective option for businesses who don't want to pay for the DCX." The DCX 4S offers users 192 ports but has the same 8Gbit/s backbone.

HP has already signed up to take on the product and is selling it now, said Phillips pointing out that HP was particularly strong in the SME space and saw the product as a good fit for its storage products. He added that he expected to see other Brocade's partners take on the product shortly.

The switch would also work as an edge product within larger enterprises, ones that were already using the DCX, said Phillips. "There are still a large number of companies that use the core and edge type of set-up," he added.

In addition, the DCX-4S can be managed by using Brocade's Data Center Fabric Manager (DCFM) as a management tool or can, alternatively can continue to use Brocade Fabric Manager or Enterprise Fabric Control Manager (ECFM) to manage their backbones.