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Definition: GBIC

(GigaBit Interface Converter) A small transceiver that plugs into the GBIC port of a network switch and connects to Fibre Channel and Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) optical fiber cables at the other end. By choosing the appropriate GBIC module, the same electrical port on the switch can connect to fibers of different types (multimode or singlemode) and different wavelengths. If the fiber is upgraded, the GBIC is replaced.

The GBIC converts the serial electrical signals to serial optical signals and vice versa. GBIC modules are hot swappable and contain ID and system information for the switch. GBIC was superseded by the small form-factor pluggable transceiver (see SFP).

Combo GBIC Ports
Combo ports are paired with Ethernet ports. For example, if a GBIC transceiver is plugged into GBIC port 24, then Ethernet port 24 is disabled even if a cable is plugged in. See transceiver.