IMC Networks last week unveiled a 10\/100\/1000M bit\/sec copper-to-fiber media converter.The Gigabit MediaLinX converts Ethernet signals traversing twisted-pair copper cables at all speeds to Gigabit Ethernet over fiber-optic lines. By doing so, the converter is able to extend the distances the signals can travel to 80 kilometers.The converter is available as a module that fits into the company\u2019s optical access chassis platforms. It auto-negotiates the correct speed on the copper side and also has a force mode.IMC is selling the device as a way to interface Gigabit Ethernet devices with network segments that are still running 10M bit\/sec or 100M bit\/sec Ethernet. It can also be used by service providers to offer businesses virtual LAN-based services over fairly long distances, and at a variety of data rates.IMC offers a free SNMP-based management application to oversee the equipment, but it can also be managed via HP OpenView, the company says. The free iView software provides the ability to configure and upgrade the Gigabit MediaLinX remotely and the ability to view real-time status information and traffic statistics from the converter and the links attached to it.The converter is available with several different connections - multimode fiber for distances up to 300 meters, 1310-nanometer single-mode fiber for distances up to 40 km, and 1550-nm single-mode fiber for distances up to 80 km. There are also single-strand fiber models to transmit full-duplex data over just one strand of fiber, IMC says.The converters are available now, starting at $680.