GLOBAL technology company, Alcatel-Lucent is taking a key step forward in its strategy to support the delivery of secure, reliable and high-performance cloud services by introducing a major new capability to its portfolio of enterprise solutions.According to Alcatel, businesses are increasingly looking to the cloud to give them more flexibility and greater control over costs, but until now many have been reluctant to fully embrace cloud services due to concerns about the availability, security and performance of their mission-critical applications and data.The company informed that it had positioned itself to helping enterprises prepare for the cloud evolution with the introduction of a new high-capacity 40 gigabit Ethernet (GigE) switching module for the company's widely deployed OmniSwitch' 6900 enterprise network switch, dramatically increasing the data capacity, speed and performance of corporate data center networks.This, Alcatel in statement explained that it would lay the groundwork for enterprises to enjoy the same quality of experience with cloud services as with applications deployed in their own data centres.Continuing, it explained that this new module enables multiple switches to be linked together to create the 40 GigE Pod, which will help enterprises prepare their data centre networks for the emerging 'carrier cloud' category of services, offering better control of bandwidth and the ability to provide a guaranteed quality of service. In addition to establishing the extremely low-latency, high-capacity links between servers needed to introduce carrier cloud services, the 40 GigE Pod also dramatically increases the ability of enterprises to support a wide array of high-bandwidth services such as video, transfers of large files, real-time collaboration and business productivity tools and more within their own network.It added that the 40 GigE Pod represented a significant evolution of the Alcatel-Lucent Mesh, an award-winning solution that brought together the best of the cloud with enterprise data center networks.Principal Analyst at ZK Research and Yankee Group Affiliate, Zeus Kerravala said: 'Enterprises need to be able to choose which applications they maintain in their own data centre and which they can source from the cloud. As importantly, their data centre fabric needs to be flexible enough to take advantage of all the capabilities of the cloud, while supporting seamless interactions between the cloud and applications hosted on their own network. Alcatel-Lucent is bringing a real-world practicality to data center fabrics, both in terms of affordability and scalability for enterprises both large and small. With this solution, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise provides a safe place to do business ' whether it's in the enterprise data centre or the cloud.'Coupled with the launch of the 40 GigE module, Kerravala pointed out that the company had expanded its 'Data Centre Switching Partner' ecosystem with companies including Emulex, NetApp and VMware, to make it easier for customers to deploy more affordable, best-of-breed data centre solutions.According to him, this highlights the company's commitment to open standards, by ensuring that Alcatel-Lucent's equipment works smoothly and seamlessly with that of other industry leaders.Vice President of Marketing, Emulex, Shaun Walsh said: 'We are committed to helping our customers prepare their infrastructures for the future. This focus marries well with Alcatel-Lucent's approach to its new Enterprise Data Centre Switching Partner ecosystem. We are proud to be a charter member of the ecosystem programme, which will give customers the confidence to deploy fully interoperable joint solutions. Click here to read full news..