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Ask the Expert: Hierarchical Network Design, Includes Core, Distribution and Access

08-01-2014 03:00 PM PST thru 08-15-2014 03:00 PM PST

Welcome to the Cisco® Support Community Ask the Expert conversation.  This is an opportunity to learn and ask questions about hierarchical network design. 

Recommending a network topology is required for meeting a customer's corporate network design needs in their business and technical goals and often consists of many interrelated components. The hierarchical design made this easier like "divide and conquer" the job and develop the design in layers.

Network design experts have developed the hierarchical network design model to help to develop a topology in discrete layers. Each layer can be focused on specific functions, to select the right systems and features for the layer.

A typical hierarchical topology is

  • A core layer of high-end routers and switches that are optimized for availability and performance.
  • A distribution layer of routers and switches that implement policies.
  • An access layer that connects users via lower-end switches and wireless access points.


Ahmad Manzoor is a Senior Pre-Sales Engineer at AGCN, Pakistan. He has more than 10 years of experience in first-rate management, commercial and technical skills in the field of data communication and services lifecycle—from solution design through sales pitch, designing RFPs, architecture, and solution—all with the goal toward winning projects (creating win/win situations) of obsolete solutions.  Ahmad also has vast experience in designing end-to-end data centers, from building infrastructure design to data communication and network Infrastructure design. He has worked for several large companies in Pakistan and United Arab Emirates markets; for example, National Engineer, WATEEN Telecom, Emircom, Infotech, Global Solutions, NETS International, Al-Aberah, and AGCN, also known as Getronics, Pakistan.

Remember to use the rating system to let Ahmad know if he has given you an adequate response. 

Because of the volume expected during this event, Ahmad might not be able to answer every question. Remember that you can continue the conversation in the  Solutions and Architectures under the sub-community Data Center & Virtualization, shortly after the event. This event lasts through August 15, 2014. Visit this forum often to view responses to your questions and the questions of other Cisco Support Community members.