Juniper Networks Has 'A Limited Set' Of Products Affected By A Faulty Clock Component

Juniper Networks has confirmed that some of its product lines contain a faulty clock signal component that causes systems to eventually fail.

"Juniper Networks is aware of an issue related to a component manufactured by a supplier which impacts a limited set of our product line. We are currently working directly with any impacted customers on a swift solution," said a Juniper spokesperson in an email to CRN relating to the clock signal component issue.

[RELATED: HPE - Clock Signal Component Issue May Affect 'Limited' Number Of Products]

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based networking vendor declined to disclose what specific products were affected, if a product replacement plan was in place or its channel partner strategy to proactively combat the issue for customers.

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Network World was first to report on the Juniper matter, noting that affected products include routers, switches and security appliances including certain models of Juniper's MX series of routers, EX Ethernet line of switches and its PTX 3000 integrated line cards.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Wednesday also confirmed a "limited number" of its products include a faulty component, which it identified as the Intel C2000 Atom processor. HPE did not identify the affected products, provide details on how it plans to mitigate the problem for impacted customers or disclose what role solution providers will play in those plans.

Earlier this month, network market leader Cisco announced that some of its most popular products lines including its Nexus switches, Adaptive Security Appliance firewalls, Integrated Services Routers and Meraki cloud-based managed switches include a clock signal component that causes the products to fail after 18 months, with a noticeable increase in failures after three years of runtime.

Juniper held 17.4 percent of the worldwide Ethernet switch and router market for the third quarter of 2016, compared to Cisco's 57 percent share and HPE's 5.5 percent share, according to Framingham, Mass.-based IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Ethernet Switch and Router Tracker.

Multiple Juniper partners interviewed by CRN said the vendor hasn't made them aware of the component issue or disclosed to them any customers potentially affected.

"Those products appear to be more geared to the service provider market, not really the enterprise" said Chris Becerra, president and CEO of Terrapin Systems, a San Jose, Calif.-based solution provider and Juniper partner. "Juniper hasn't told us anything yet though."

One top executive from a solution provider who is a longtime Juniper partner said he was concerned that Juniper hasn't contacted him yet so he could make customers aware of the situation.

"We are seeing what's happening with Cisco around this problem, so the faster we can reach out to our customers, the better," said the executive who declined to be identified. "This is a timely issue. I'm hoping Juniper is either formulating some sort of attack strategy right now, or trying to gather together all the clients who are affected by this."

Both Cisco and Juniper have been unwilling to identify the manufacturer of the component issue.

Intel in January disclosed that its low-powered Atom C2000 chips contained a clock flaw issue, according to a document on its web site. The document said the Low Pin Count (LPC) clock outputs could stop working causing systems with the faulty processors to no longer be able to boot up.

An Intel spokesperson declined to say which vendors' products include the component, saying it doesn't comment about other companies. The spokesperson said the issue with the C2000 chips "has been identified, root caused and there are immediate fixes available."

"Intel is working now with customers on a board level workaround for the existing products which resolves the issue," the spokesperson said. "Additionally, Intel will implement a minor silicon fix in a new product stepping that resolves this issue."

During Intel's fourth fiscal quarter, which ended in December, CFO Robert Holmes Swan said a product issue limited revenue growth.

"We were observing a product quality issue in the fourth quarter with slightly higher expected failure rates under certain use and time constraints, and we established a reserve to deal with that," said Swan, during Intel’s fourth quarter earnings call on Jan. 26. "We think we have it relatively well-bounded with a minor design fix that we're working with our clients to resolve … it weighed on (Intel's Data Center Group) margins, and we do not expect that to continue in 2017."

Swan did not provide additional details on the product issue during the call.