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term "line card"

Answered Question
Feb 24th, 2016
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I've been wondering what line card is?

Is it like NIC on interface?


Thank you. I'm learning CCNP. Hope I can move on my learning with the help of this community.

Correct Answer by Joseph W. Doherty about 1 year 5 months ago

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It's often used as a reference to a chassis switch's multiple port module cards.  Number of ports vary, but unlike module cards, line cards usually contain a good number, for instance 24 to 96 Ethernet copper ports.  There's not a clear demarcation between a port module card and a port line card, but again, line cards are generally larger.  Also, the term is informal.

An example of a "line card" (although not its official name), might be seen in figure 1 (and others), in http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collateral/switches/catalyst-6500-....


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Overall Rating: 4.8 (5 ratings)
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Philip D'Ath Wed, 02/24/2016 - 20:46
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It is a card that plugs into a chassis.

ciscouopsdod Thu, 02/25/2016 - 03:12
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is it a "module"?

May you give an image link of a line card? Thank you very much.

Correct Answer
Joseph W. Doherty Thu, 02/25/2016 - 06:11
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Disclaimer

The Author of this posting offers the information contained within this posting without consideration and with the reader's understanding that there's no implied or expressed suitability or fitness for any purpose. Information provided is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as rendering professional advice of any kind. Usage of this posting's information is solely at reader's own risk.

Liability Disclaimer

In no event shall Author be liable for any damages wha2tsoever (including, without limitation, damages for loss of use, data or profit) arising out of the use or inability to use the posting's information even if Author has been advised of the possibility of such damage.

Posting

It's often used as a reference to a chassis switch's multiple port module cards.  Number of ports vary, but unlike module cards, line cards usually contain a good number, for instance 24 to 96 Ethernet copper ports.  There's not a clear demarcation between a port module card and a port line card, but again, line cards are generally larger.  Also, the term is informal.

An example of a "line card" (although not its official name), might be seen in figure 1 (and others), in http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collateral/switches/catalyst-6500-....


Matthew Woods Thu, 02/25/2016 - 07:15
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In the context of telephony a line card is an expansion card found in mid-range and enterprise class PBX chassis.  Line cards are distinct from management cards and service cards in that generally they are used to terminate the connection to an end client device.  As such, they usually perform the kinds of services you would expect with that role; Ring voltage generation, DTMF decode, loop start detection, on hook/off hook detection, etc.

Joseph W. Doherty Fri, 02/26/2016 - 06:23
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Alas, I'm unable to rate your post, which I believe deserves a 5.

What you describe, very likely tells why Ethernet chassis cards, are often called "line cards" because they likely physically much appear like a Telco chassis (telephone) line card.

PS:

Ah, after adding this post, I was able to rate your post.

Matthew Woods Fri, 02/26/2016 - 09:00
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Sounds likely to me.  It's one of those terms, like "Call Manager", that is no longer entirely accurate, but hangs around due to trade use and similarity to current nomenclature.


Here's a picture of a line card in a popular old small business class PBX.  In an enterprise class PBX the cards would have much higher port densities and would therefore look more like a network module or WIC card.


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