I'm looking for a 24-port SFP switch. Each of the two switches in the subject meets that requirement. If I went with the ME switch over the 3750 (at about half the cost), what features/functionality if any, would I be giving up? (I'm not concerned with stacking).
I haven't have any experience with ME switches (just got our first 3800X) and I can assure you this: The ME switches are NOT designed for simple routing and switching. They are designed for service providers who have "special" needs. In order for the ME to work there are some Layer 2/3 functions that are stripped out of their codes to get the service provider requirements in.
Still not sure? Talk to your vendor and get a 3600X in for a demo and proof-of-concept.
If you really want to lower your cost down then talk to Cisco Refurbished. You can get your hands on a few legacy WS-C3750G-12S at cheaper price BUT with warranty.
Thanks. At the end of the day, it's not really about cutting every dollar possible, but half the price is significant. If the 3750 is the right switch, so be it. I'm just wondering what the big differences are (aside from MPLS on the ME switch and stacking on the 3750).
You mentioned "some layer 2/3 functions" that are removed -- do you have any details regarding that?
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As to the difference between the 3750 series vs. ME switches, the former is oriented toward typical business LAN usage, the latter toward MetroEthernet and/or ISP usage. The internals of the two kinds of switches might be nearly identical (as an example, there is/was even a ME3750.)
If you have a service contract with Cisco, you might use their feature comparison tool to compare any two switches IOS features. Hardware feature differences can be determined by careful reading of the switch data sheets.
As a guess, some reasons the ME3600X might be less expensive than a 3750X would be no stacking feature (also why similar 3560s are less expensive than 3750s) and perhaps less internal hardware capacity (some of which can be very subtle like TCAM resources).
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