Shiva FastPath 5 Announcement Letter
The following announcement letter for the Shiva FastPath 5 hardware was originally posted to comp.sys.mac.announce by Steven Sakamoto
of the UCLA Computer "Scinece" Department. It is presented here in its unedited form.
One Cambridge Center
Cambridge, MA 02142
SHIVA ANNOUNCES THE FASTPATH 5
THE NEXT GENERATION CONNECTIVITY PLATFORM
Redwood City, CA (May 28, 1991) - Shiva Corporation, a leading vendor
of AppleTalk networking devices, today unveiled the FastPath 5, a
multiprotocol LocalTalk to Ethernet gateway. The FastPath 5 provides
easier configuration, better network management, faster network
processing speeds ad a more robust platform for future enhancements.
"Through its history, the FastPath has represented the 'state of the
art' in LocalTalk to Ethernet connectivity," said Dan Schwinn, Shiva
president. "With the introduction of the new version, Shiva solidifies
the FastPath's status as the most capable and reliable gateway
NEW MANAGEMENT INTERFACE
A key enhancement in FastPath 5 is the new Shiva Net Manager software.
It replaces the FastPath Manager and will be compatible with both the
FastPath 4 with 5.0 PROM and FastPath 5. The new software provides a
more powerful and intuitive interface for network management,
configuration and diagnostics. Shiva Net Manager takes the next step
forward in router network management. It can display routing tables
(RTMP) which provide a quick view of the network's current status sa
well as the status of other routers on the network. Improveds logs, now
with a time/date stamp and user friendly diagnostics, let the user
better identify network anomalies.
An ever changing aspect of networking is the physical media used to
connect devices. The FastPath 5 provides a flexible solution for media
change - the EtherModule TM. The EtherModule is a removable, internal
Ethernet connector provided with the FastPath 5. When users need to
switch to a different Ethernet media, they can change transceivers
without replacing the FastPath 5 or losing the unit's configuration
information. EtherModules will be available for thin, thick and 10BaseT
Ethernet as wall as for the Apple Ethernet Cabling System.
The FastPath 5 can be purchased in either of two configurations: With
an installed EtherModule for 10BaseT, or with an Installed EtherModule
for thin Ethernet cabling. A FastPath 5 configured for thin Ethernet
will include an additional EtherModule for thick Ethernet.
INCREASED PROCESSING SPEED
The FastPath 5 significantly increases processing speeds with the
addition of a separate LocalTalk I/O processor and faster CPU. The
dedicated I/O processor eliminates bottlenecks that normally occur as
AppleTalk network packets enter a gateway's LocalTalk port. Shiva also
increased the clock speed of the main 68000 CMOS CPU from 8 MHz to
10MHz to further accelerate processing.
PLATFORM FOR THE FUTURE
The FastPath 5 is designed to easily incorporate future enhancements.
Its "Virtual PROM" will enable users to download future upgrades as
software-only, requiring no physical PROM change. This feature will
make any future upgrades faster and more convenient, especially for
sites with multiple FastPaths. Shiva has increased the memory in the
FastPath 5 to 512K, double the amount in the FastPath 4. 512K is more
than enough for even the largest AppleTalk, TCP/IP, DECnet
internetworks. For better organization and easier installation, the
FastPath 5 has the capability to be rack mounted. Shiva is designing a
rack which will hold up to eight FastPaths. The rack will provide a
common power source and a larger scale ventilation system to control
Pricing and availability of the rack will be announced at a future date.
PRICING, AVAILABILITY AND UPDATES
The FastPath 5 will ship at the end of June at the suggested list price
of $2799.00. This price will include the Shiva Net manager and either
10BaseT EtherModule, or the thin and thick Ethernet EtherModules.
The FastPath 5 will be available through Shiva's authorized dealers and
distributors, including Tech Data, Ingram Micro, Merisel, Macamerica,
and NYNEX. It will also be available through Shiva's international
Three upgrade options for current FastPath users will be available in
July, 1991. Available directly from Shiva, the upgrade options are:
1. PROM Upgrade Kit - For $149.00 users can purchase the 5.0 PROM, K-Star 9.0, Shiva NetManager and new manuals.
2. Memory Upgrade Kit - For $299.00 users can purchase the PROM upgrade
kit described above, plus 256K add-on memory and a new case with a fan.
3. Trade-In - For $1299.00 users can trade in their old FastPath or
other competitive gateways for a new FastPath 5. This offer will expire
September 30, 1991.
The FastPath is the original LocalTalk to Ethernet Gateway and
represents the de facto standard with an estimated 80 percent of the
market. Originally developed by Kinetics, Inc. in 1985, the FastPath
was acquired by Shiva in June of 1990, from Novell. Shiva Corporation,
based in Cambridge, MA, develops and markets network communications
products for LAN and WAN connectivity, plus connections for individual
computers to existing networks. According to market research firm
Internation [sic] Data Corporation, Shiva Corporation is the leading
supplier of AppleTalk internetworking systems with 56.1 percent of the
market. Shiva products have won critical acclaim for their easy to user
peripheral sharing, remote access and local- and wide-area network
I'd like to know
, if for no other reason than my own curiosity, if the eight unit enclosure actually came to exist.
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