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45xx or 65xx

just a quick question. have a customer that wants to implement some VoIP for 500 users. users will attach to some 3560s with GigE uplinks to the core switches. Customer is considering 6503s or 4503s. Any rules of thumb on sizing for this number of users? Would the 4503 be enough? I am trying to get the customer to consider at least building a config with dual supervisor's but it is an uphill battle!

all input is appreciated!




Re: 45xx or 65xx


Its not always a question of bandwidth or capacity, but what IOS tools and functionality one switch offers over the other. The 6500 with Sup32 or Sup720 is much more feature rich in QoS and Security tools (just to name a few) than 4500. Mainly, its the PFC3B in the 6500 (Sup32 or Sup720) that gives you the gold mine of features and funtionality performed at hardware speeds.

Given that this environment has VoIP with 500+ phones, I would definately go for a 6500 with Sup720.

Also, depending on the network design, having dual superviors in the core can actually slow down network convergence. The idea is, with the right high availability design, it is faster to fail over to another core switch than it is to wait for a standby Sup to kick in (even with NSF).

In addition, 6500 offers much better investment protection. The life cycle of this switch will extend to at least 2012 (quoting the Cisco 6500 Product Managers).

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Hall of Fame Super Silver

Re: 45xx or 65xx

Personally, I would assert that the 4503 is more than adequate as a core switch for a 500 user infrastructure. I would agree that dual core switches is a better high availability solution than dual supervisors in a single switch (besides you need to move up to the 4507R or 4510R for dual sup capability on the 4500 series).

Run each closet switch into both core switches with two wiring closet VLANs on two separate core spanning tree instances (one per VLAN). Trunk between them with Etherchannel at Layer 2. Run Layer 3 on the core only with HSRP.

Yes - one can load up the 6500 series with more services-based modules, but it is probably way more than is necessary for a 500 user environment, in my estimation. If you are concerned about 4500 series throughput, use the SupV-10GE supervisors and make the trunk between the two core switches the two 10 Gbps Ethernet connections. 136 Gbps or 102 Mpps of switching capacity should be enough for 5-10 times your user population.

Hope this helps. Please rate helpful posts.

New Member

Re: 45xx or 65xx

thanks for the tips. after some discussions the customer has decided on the following config

2 * WS-C4503 3-slot chassis, fan, no power supply

4 * PWR-C45-2800ACV= (Catalyst 4500 2800W AC Power Supply with Inline Power)

2 * WS-X4013+TS(=) Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Supervisor Engine II-Plus-TS, twelve 10/100/1000 802.3af PoE, 8 SFP, console RJ-45 (based on Cisco IOS Software)

2 * WS-X4448-GB-SFP Catalyst 4500 48-port 1000BASE-X

cost was a big factor - and he seems to be untroubled by the limited additional services in comparison to the 65xx least for now! This should fit his requirements today - and provide a bit of growing room in terms of port numbers.



Re: 45xx or 65xx

I hate to see people kickle-and-dime core switches that carry the business voice and data.

Just as a precaution, some versions of IOS for 4500's are plagued with high-CPU problems.

This version seems to be pretty stable, but you might want to double check with TAC before you choose an IOS rev to load.


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