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Alteon WebSystems Incorporated, originally known as Alteon Networks, was a computer network hardware company based in San Jose, California. Alteon was acquired by Nortel Networks on October 4, 2000.[1] On February 22, 2009 Nortel Networks sold the Alteon application switching line to Radware.

Defunct2000 acquired by Nortel
2009 sold to Radware
United States
ProductsNetwork switches
Network interface controllers
Original logo for Alteon Networks



Alteon Networks was founded in 1996 by Mark Bryers, John Hayes, Ted Schroeder and Wayne Hathaway. Initial venture capital investors were Matrix Partners and Sutter Hill Ventures. Dominic Orr became chief executive in October 1996.[2]

Alteon introduced innovative products such as the ACEswitch 180, which was the first network switch to deliver Ethernet with selectable speed, 10/100 or 1000 Mbit/s, on every port via autonegotiation. Their ACEdirector Layer 4-7 switch was designed as an integrated services front-end and server load balancer. They also introduced Jumbo Frames (up to 9,000 bytes) with their ACEnic adapters, and supported by their switches.[3]

In addition to their Server Switches, Alteon produced the first network interface controller (NIC) in 1997 that used Gigabit Ethernet (demonstrated at the Networld + Interop trade show in September 1996).[4] Alteon's third generation Gigabit Ethernet NIC (code named "Tigon") became the basis for Broadcom's family of ethernet controllers (series BCM570x) [5] and has shipped over 60 million copies. It was used in low-cost adapters from vendors such as 3Com.[6]

In July 2000, Nortel Networks announced it was buying Alteon for US$6 billion in stock. The deal had originally been announced with a value of $7.8 billion, but the stock market plummeted before the deal closed in October.[1][7] Nortel rolled the ACEDirector and ACESwitch products into its Personal Internet product line, but one year later sales had slowed down.[8] On February 22, 2009 Nortel Networks announced they would sell the Alteon application switching line to Radware, for $17.65 million.[9][10]

In November 2013, Radware announced the Alteon NG, marketed as an application delivery controller.[11]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Nortel Networks Completes Acquisition of Alteon WebSystems". News release. Nortel. October 5, 2000. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  2. ^ "Alteon Appoints New Chief Executive Officer: Former Bay Networks Executive Dominic Orr Joins Fast Growing Startup". Press release. October 14, 1996. Archived from the original on January 13, 1997. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
  3. ^ Jeff Caruso (October 22, 1998). "Alteon still stumping for Jumbo Frames". Network World. Archived from the original on October 15, 2012. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
  4. ^ "Alteon Networks and Network Appliance Demonstrate Gigabit Ethernet Connectivity at NetWorld+Interop Atlanta". Press release. September 18, 1996. Archived from the original on January 13, 1997. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
  5. ^ Bill Paul. "bge - Broadcom BCM570x/5714/5721/5750/5751/5752/5789 PCI Gigabit Ethernet adapter driver". Ubuntu FreeBSD manual. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  6. ^ David Lammers (March 16, 2001). "Gbit Ethernet primed for mainstream servers". EE Times. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  7. ^ "Nortel Networks to Acquire Alteon WebSystems for US$7.8 Billion - Will Establish Leadership Position in Delivering High-Performance Internet Data Centers for the New Networked Economy". News release. Nortel. July 28, 2000. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  8. ^ Phil Hochmuth (July 30, 2001). "Nortel's Alteon play gets mixed results". Network World. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
  9. ^ Radware Enters into Agreement to Acquire Nortel’s Layer 4-7 Application Delivery Business
  10. ^ Ann Bednarz (April 2, 2009). "Radware pays $18 million for Nortel's Alteon assets". Network World. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  11. ^

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