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New Member

is there any way to understand cisco's naming methods for switches and rout

When shopping for cisco components it would help if i knew what the difference would be when it comes to numbers and letters. At first I thought that the last 2 numbers equaled how many ethernet ports there were, for instance 2924 catalyst switch has 24 ports. and the 2501 has 1 port. but then i got a 2505 and it has 8 ports, well really just one ethernet port, but it looks like 8!

So anyways, how to make sense of cisco's naming methods? When you hear something end in a xx50 does it mean something? or start with a 1xxx does that mean anything? or what about x9xx series?

then what about the letters at the end, XL, or M, or G, or PS, or SMI, or EN.

So far it feels as if they draw numbers out of a hat because there's no way of guessing what any of this means. So maybe theres a chart or table to look at which tells me something useful for once?


Re: is there any way to understand cisco's naming methods for sw


A lot of people made a mistake because of some perception in the naming convention. Though some of cisco product naming convention make sense.

It is best to check the "Cisco Router Guide" and "Cisco Catalyst Switch Guide" attached before making any purchase.



New Member

Re: is there any way to understand cisco's naming methods for sw


My understanding of symbols:

8xx-1800 home and smb routers (usually with build in small switch)

19xx - catalyst switch line (end of life?)

2500-2600-2800 routers line (bigger number in second position mean faster and newer version) - branch office edge routers

29xx - catalyst switch, usually L2 access ports

35xx - catalyst switch, L3 more powerful

37xx-38xx - router line, HQ edge router

4000-4500 - modular catalyst switch (usually huge port aggregation in IDF/MDF)

5000 - modular catalyst switch (end of life)

6500 - core L3 switch, very power full

7200/7600 - core L3 router

G - Gigabyte Ethernet ports

M - Metro switch

24/48 - numbers of catalyst ports

Express - Catalyst switch line for SMB, theoretical without CLI, management by GUI Cisco Network Assistant

SMI - Standard Multilayer Software Image

EMI - Enhanced Standard Multilayer Software Image - more future compare to SMI

XL - Mean that catalyst switch was design with emphasize for QOS - not sure here.

If I made symbols mistake, corrects are welcome.



New Member

Re: is there any way to understand cisco's naming methods for sw

wow lots of info to memorize it looks like. too bad theres not a store to go browse to actually see this stuff and take notes :P

thanks for the help.