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New Member

Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

hi folks!,

We are looking in the market for layer 3 switch with four gigabit fiber ports (SC) and atleast 24 10/100 ports. What product does cisco have with these specs?... or anything close.....

Any help is appreciated

Thanks!

  • Other Network Infrastructure Subjects
11 REPLIES
New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

I think in order to make an accurate recommendation, we would need to know how this is going to be used. If it is going to be the core of a medium to large sized network, the answer would be different than if this was a distribution layer switch, or access switch.

What comes to mind immediately though, are the 4000 series switches, with the RSM (route switch module). Or possibly, something in the 3550 series, with the EMI software, if you are not looking to spend that much money. However, the configuration you are looking for may not be available in one switch on the 3550's (not that I know of, at least).

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

Well, we have two subnets that have a 1720 routing between them. We are about to deploy this new web application and require 100 mb bandwidth. The 1720 only has one 100 mb interface. It does not have a 100 ethernet interface WIC to add on. We would like to have two on this router. This presents a bottleneck for us.

Also we currently have implemented gigabit ethernet over fiber to a remote building and want to have three more fiber links.(all on the same subnet)

So I guess it would be the core of our network.

We are not looking at spending much money. Hewlett Packard has one that will work. It's the 5400 XL series. I think they are about 1700.00.

I just would like another option for this switching device.

Thanks

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

I would go with a stackable solution if your wanting to stay on the cheap.

Look at the Catalyst 3550-12G Switch (10 GBIC-based Gigabit Ethernet ports and two 10/100/1000BaseT ports). This will give you the Layer 3 switching between subnets, and fiber backbone connectivity. At the same location, you can install a 2950G switch (can have either 12, 24 or 48 10/100TX ports) to place under your head end 3550 for local copper connectivity. Out at each location, you can use the same exact 2950G switches to uplink to the 3550.

If you want to add fault tolerance and if you have more than 1 pair of fiber to each location, you can buy a second 3550 switch exactly like the first, run one GigE link to the first 3550 and a second GigE link to the second 3550. You can then use HSRP between the two 3550s. If you want to add redundant power to any of those, buy a Redundant Power System at whichever locations you need it (probably head end would be the first one) and you can connect up to 4 3550 and 2950 switches into it.

At the end of that, you've got a pretty darned good system!

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

Thanks... I'll call my vendor. I'll probably uplink to the 3550 with the HP switches on the fiber links. The reason is cuzz I doubt my boss with will want to fork that much money. The HP switches that I would use to uplink to 3550 are the HP 2524 switches. They're about 900.00. I would really like to get the Cisco...... I really want to learn and get more into Cisco Technologies.... besides... it looks good on my resume!

Thanks

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

Another way to shave more costs is to get an authorized refurbished switch from Cisco's refurb program. Tech Data is one of the three vendors under the authorized refurb program. I would recommend Catalyst 3524XL or 3548XL switches. I use alot of these and are very happy with them. I also buy alot of refurb stuff from Tech Data. The prices are much lower than new, the units are ready with both legally relicensed software and maintenance qualified status. The inventory varies day to day, so if they don't have what you need today, check a few days later and they will have different stuff.

The 3524XL and 3548XL are the switches that the 2950G's replaced. They are 24 or 48 ports of 10/100TX and have two GBIC slots. I recently got a 3524 for about $1000, so it may be in the same ballpark as the HP stuff.

I looked at the same HP switches awhile back. To be honest, they probably work just fine, but seem kind of cheesy and cheaply built. Cisco has probably the most extensive support structure I've ever seen. Back when I was looking at HP, I also looked at Extreme Networks, which has great prices, high quality products and beat HP hands down on every front. However, Extreme's support is pretty scant. I also really wonder with HP's chronic reorganizations how long they will stay in the networking business. Doesn't seem HP's core market is in networking. I'd rather stick with someone whose "nothing but net" and also has lots of support resources.

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

I really appreciate all your input. I will go with the Cisco switches. I have another question... you said before

... "to place under your head end 3550 for local copper connectivity"...

what do you mean by under head end?.... will I be stacking the 3550 and 2950 together?....

Many thanks again.

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

Assuming you will want some 10/100 ports at the head end location, yes you would be stacking them. The 3550s, 2950s and 3500XLs are all fixed configuration stackable switches. The 3550 switch I mentioned only has 12 total ports: 10 GBIC ports, and two 10/100/1000 TX copper ports. The thing to do is connect all your fiber connections to GBICs on the 3550. For 10/100TX connectivity right there in the room, stack a 2950 with the 3550. You can uplink the 2950 with one or two GBICs to provide a 1Gb or 2Gb pipe to the rest of your network. Naturally if you use both GBIC ports to uplink, you'll want to use Etherchannel to create the one large pipe.

If you want to look at something with all the connectivity in one unit, look at the Catalyst 4000 series. It is a chassis based solution. I'd think it would end up costing a bit more, but it's all in one box. Not sure how inportant that is to you.

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

How much does the 12 port 3550 go for?......

How do you create the etherchannel?

Many thanks!

New Member

Re: Advice on a Layer 3 switch model to choose

There's sample configs on Cisco's support website. They are easy to find.

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