Cisco Systems says it has turned the corner in getting service providers to adopt its biggest router. Revenue from the Carrier Routing System-1 (CRS-1), the company\u2019s massive system for the core of carrier networks, was about US$80 million in Cisco\u2019s fiscal fourth quarter, President and Chief Executive Officer John Chambers said during a quarterly results conference call Tuesday. That figure was double the revenue from a year earlier. Meanwhile, Cisco received more than $100 million worth of orders for the product in the quarter, up more than 200 percent from a year earlier.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nCisco\u2019s John ChambersThe CRS-1\u2019s numbers make up a small part of the whole financial picture at the San Jose, Calif., company, which reported revenue of $7.98 billion in the quarter that ended July 29. But as its flagship product, the huge router is important to Cisco\u2019s image, as well as being a key weapon in its fight against rival Juniper Networks and the leading edge of a new software architecture destined for other Cisco products. The product, unveiled in mid-2004, succeeded the Cisco 12000 Series platform as the company\u2019s biggest router. It can be equipped for a total capacity as great as 92Tbps and has modular software called Internetwork Operating System (IOS)\u00a0XR that is different from the IOS on most other Cisco gear. IOS XR is gradually trickling down to smaller Cisco products.It\u2019s been a long trip, but products this big typically sell in relatively small numbers and have to go through long evaluations by the carriers. It has also taken time for Cisco to develop a full set of features in the new software, analysts said. "It\u2019s a very complex product that\u2019s still in its infancy," said Frank Dzubeck, president of Communications Network Architects, a consultancy in Washington, D.C.But the growth Cisco reported Tuesday also reflects the recovery of a telecommunications business that has gone from a bewildering bandwidth glut and stock crash early in the decade to fast-growing demand. "Video is becoming a killer app that really does require bandwidth," said Burton Group analyst Dave Passmore. New fiber-to-the-home networks, faster cable modem connections and third-generation mobile systems also are increasing the need for capacity at the core of networks.The pre-emptive multitasking architecture and modular software of the CRS-1 helped Cisco technology to catch up with Juniper, its rival in carrier routers, analysts said. Juniper\u2019s market share grew from 30 percent in 2002 to 37 percent in 2004 as Cisco\u2019s fell from 63 percent to 59 percent, according to Shin Umeda of Dell\u2019Oro Group.\u00a0 Since then the market-share gap between the two companies has remained fairly stable, he said.However, about two-thirds of Cisco\u2019s revenue from this class of routers still comes from the 12000 series, reflecting its big installed base, Umeda said. The battle for the top-end router deployments continues as many carriers plan out their next-generation architectures amid the growth in traffic. Cisco has been an outsider to telecommunications and had a hard time breaking in to carrier accounts, but Chambers said Tuesday that they are starting to view Cisco as a business partner. That change reflects the fact that Cisco\u2019s IP vision of networking finally is starting to supplant the traditional telephone networks as Cisco predicted in the 1990s, according to Passmore. "Cisco firmly aligned itself with the ISPs and made enemies of all the traditional telcos," Passmore said. "The telcos finally did see the light and realized the future was IP."-Stephen Lawson, IDG News Service (San Francisco Bureau)Check out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.