we are currently in the process of implementing nation-wide connectivity. currently only partial of our total branch office is connected to the corporate office. we use cisco router 2600 and 3600 to connec this site.
for the other branch office, we plan to get cisco routers too. but new law restrict us from specifying brands. now our concern is that nortel, 3com, avaya and the like can bid for the project.
with the existing cisco routers in mind we want to stick with implementing cisco routers for the others.
now my questions are:
1. if incase other router manufacturer come in, can we integrate them with our current.
2. what are the possible problem if this happen.
3. in our opion, we will encounter compatibility, learning curve, etc issue when this happen. is there a document justifying this issue so that we can stick with one product, like in our case it's cisco.
As for as compatibility issues are concerned, if all manufacturers have implemented network technologies according to a proposed RFC or according to IEEE guidelines, there will not be any issues. Cisco has taken utmost care in this regard to avoid any compatibility issues. If there is any deviation from the standard guidelines, then it is made clear.
Many known compatibility issues have been solved and some are still existent. You need to be careful to choose your network hardware. For eg: if you are buying LAN equipments, better buy all of them from a single vendor. So also WAN equipments. This is help you in easier troubleshooting in times of crisis like network outages. Moreover, support and help from the same vendor can be expected.
Imagine the nightmare, when your nationwide network is down and each vendor (from whom you had bought the equipments) puts the blame on the others !! This could prove very costly to your business.
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