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The HP 8/24 SAN switch addresses the needs of SMB organizations as well as large enterprises by functioning as a standalone core switch or as lower-cost edge switch in large core-to-edge tiered storage networks. The 8/24 SAN switches provides unprecedented investment protection. Auto-sensing ports that support backward compatibility with 1, 2, 4, and 8 Gbit/sec devices significantly reduce deployment complexity and costs, while providing compatibility with installed devices. Organizations that do not require 8 Gbit/sec interfaces can populate the new switches with 4 Gbit/sec SFPs, while preserving their ability to easily upgrade to 8 Gbit/sec SFPs in the future. The 8/24 SAN Switch with 24 enabled ports may be deployed as a full-fabric switch or in Access Gateway mode, which provides connectivity into any SAN (the default mode setting is a switch). Access Gateway mode utilizes NPIV switch standards to present Fibre Channel connections as logical devices to SAN fabrics.