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A Year In The Cisco Channel: 10 Key Events

The Cisco channel never lacks drama or intensity, and as Cisco partners prepare to convene in New Orleans next week for Cisco's annual Partner Summit, they'll have a lot on their minds. Here's a look back at major events in the Cisco channel since the last Partner Summit.

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Sept. 2010: Arch Rock Acquired

Cisco's made some interesting acquisitions over the past year, especially of companies like LineSider, which specializes in network services virtualization, and more recently, Pari Networks, which makes network configuration and change management products for enterprise security. But Cisco's Chambers and its channel executives have called out smart grid and energy management as major opportunities for the channel five or more years down the line -- a fact that makes Cisco's September acquisition of Arch Rock that much more intriguing.

Arch Rock, which makes IP-based wireless technology for smart grid applications, could prove that much more important for Cisco, which sees smart grid as a potentially $20 billion-a-year opportunity down the line.

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