The new generation of Cisco Nexus series modular and fixed-configuration switches are designed to deliver the performance, scale, availability, virtualization support, security and manageability required to function as the heart of a world-class data center. Nexus switches include a broad product line that offers switching solutions across the core, aggregation layer, edge, data center interconnect (DCI), and SAN. Nexus switches incorporate advanced technologies from Cisco for supporting public and private Clouds, secure virtualization, WAN/LAN segmentation and convergence, and non-stop operation.
Progent's Cisco-certified Nexus switch consultants are available to provide remote and on-premises consulting services to help you plan an optimal switch topology to meet your unique business requirements, set up pilot systems to validate your network design, install and configure Nexus switches, define and implement appropriate policies, perform security vulnerability assessments, set up proactive monitoring, consolidate resources through virtualization, troubleshoot switching and routing issues, optimize performance, plan for expected growth, and set up the high-availability (HA) features available for Nexus switches. Progent can help you manage and troubleshoot older Nexus switches or migrate efficiently from outdated Nexus or Cisco Catalyst switches to current models of Nexus switches. Progent offers expertise with Cisco's NX-OS, IOS, and IOS-XE operating systems and can help you simplify and automate the management of your Cisco switch solution.
Cisco targets the popular Catalyst line of switches for campus and branch deployments where keys issues include user access management, application awareness, and converged wired/wireless operation. (See Cisco Catalyst Switch Consulting.) In contrast, Cisco's Nexus switches are optimized for the data center, which calls for SAN and LAN convergence, comprehensive virtual machine management, sub-microsecond latency, high capacity with seamless scalability, and advanced cloud security. Nexus switches are powered by Cisco's high-performance NX-OS operating system, which evolved from Cisco's proven SAN-OS software used in Cisco's MDS family of storage area network (SAN) switches. Support for Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) makes Nexus switches ideal for LAN and SAN network consolidation. Cisco most advanced Nexus switches can also operate in Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) mode, which supports development and operations (DevOps) teams by enabling automated, policy-based provisioning of the network, application services, security policies, tenant subnets, and workload placement.
Nexus Support for FabricPath and Virtual Port Channels (vPCs)
A key feature of the NX-OS operating system is FabricPath, a technology that makes it possible to create highly scalable Layer 2 multipath Ethernet networks without the limitations and risks of the Spanning Tree Protocol. When deployed across multiple Cisco Nexus chassis, FabricPath creates a flat data center switching fabric that offers high switching capacity, equal-cost multipathing across all available paths for increased cross-sectional bandwidth, plus predictable, ultra-low latency. This makes it easy to build the advanced infrastructure needed to support large virtualization deployments, private clouds, and high-performance computing (HPC) environments.
Cisco's FabricPath Technology for Nexus Switches Offers Cutting-Edge Performance and Scale
Nexus switches running NX-OS 4.1.3 or later support Cisco's vPC (Virtual Port Channel) technology. vPC allows you to establish a physical connection between any device that supports link aggregation technology (such as a server or switch) and two separate Nexus switches. The paired Nexus switches appear to the connected device as a single logical port channel. vPC provides fast failover protection without wasting Layer 2 bandwidth because it eliminates Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) blocked ports, instead allowing the paired switches to be active at the same time. Each of the two Nexus switches in a peered vPC domain processes half of the access layer traffic, In the event of a switch failure, the other switch automatically takes over all the traffic. This makes it easy for small organizations to design and deploy a high-availability switching solution where connected devices have two active, redundant paths to each switch.
Cisco's vPC Technology Combines High Switch Utilization with Fast Failover
Cisco Nexus 3000 Series Switches
Cisco's older generation Nexus 3000 Series switches are fixed-configuration platforms that provide dense 1 GE and 10 GE Layer 2 and Layer 3 top-of-rack (ToR) switching. Because they connect transparently to upstream Nexus switches, Nexus 3000 devices allow you to deploy end-to-end Cisco Nexus fabric in data centers. Nexus 3000 Series switches feature extensive programmability, easy manageability, comprehensive monitoring, wire-rate throughput for Layer 2 and Layer 3 traffic on all ports, and redundant, hot-swappable power supplies and fans for high availability. This Nexus 3000 portfolio includes the entry-level Nexus 3000 line, high-density Nexus 3100 models, and the low-latency. Nexus 3500 series. Many of the models in the Nexus 3000 series of switches have reached end-of-life status. Progent continues offer advanced support for all Nexus models and also help you plan and carry out an upgrade to a current product.
Cisco's Nexus 3048 switch is designed for Big Data environments. The Nexus 3048 includes 48 100/1000 RJ-45 Ethernet ports plus four 1/10 Gbps SFP+ uplink ports, can deliver 176 Gbps switching capacity, and has a switch latency of 2.7 to 7.2 microseconds. Cisco's Nexus 3064 is a high-density switch intended for co-location environments in the High Frequency Trading (HFT) market that utilize advanced unicast and multicast routing protocols and require the lowest possible latency. The Nexus 3064X delivers Layer 2 and 3 switching of up to 1.2 terabits per second (Tbps), offers sub-microsecond latency, and can support up to 64 10-Gigabit Ethernet connections with its 48 SFP+ ports and 4 Quad SFP+ (QSFP+) ports. Each of the four QSFP+ ports can operate in native 40 Gigabit Ethernet (40GbE) mode or 4 x 10GbE mode.
Cisco's Nexus 3100 Series switches are designed for mainstream data center applications in commercial, government, and education markets. The Nexus 3132Q includes 32 Enhanced Quad SFP+ (QSFP+) ports and four SFP+ ports with support for up to four 1 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) ports plus 104 10-GE ports or 32 40-GE ports. The Nexus 3132Q delivers switching performance of up to 2.56 terabits per second. The Nexus 3172PQ switch includes 48 SFP+ ports and 6 Enhanced Quad SFP+ (QSFP+) ports and supports up to 48 1 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) ports, 72 10-GE ports, or 6 40-GE ports. Layer 2 and 3 switching capacity is 1.44 terabits per second. The high-density and high-performance Nexus 3164Q switch has a 2RU form factor, includes 64 Enhanced Quad SFP+ ports, and supports up to 256 10-GE ports or 64 40-GE ports. The Nexus 3164 offers switching capacity of up to 5.12 Tbps.
The Cisco Nexus 3548 Switch is designed for high-performance trading and Big Data environments where low latency is critical. The Warp Mode Latency feature of Cisco's proprietary Algorithm Boost (Algo Boost) technology can reduce latency to 190ns for mid-size deployments, and the Warp SPAN feature makes it possible to deliver stock market data to trading servers in as little as 50ns. The Nexus 3548 includes 48 fixed 1/10-Gbps SFP+ ports and does not support 40 Gigabit Ethernet. Line-rate Layer 2 and Layer 3 capacity can be as high as 960 Gbps.
Cisco Nexus 5600 Series Switches
Cisco's Nexus 5600 Series of fixed-configuration switches, the third generation of the popular Nexus 5000 Series, are designed for top-of-rack (ToR) and middle-of-row (MoR) deployment in enterprise data centers to support line-of-business applications, ISP hosting, and Cloud computing. Key features of Nexus 5600 switches include FCoE ports for LAN/SAN convergence, FabricPath support for scalable layer 2 networks, hardware-based Virtual Extensible LAN (VXLAN) for segmentation, and support for dense 10 or 40 Gigabit Ethernet with Layer 2/3 line rate performance. All models in Cisco's Nexus 5600 Series can be managed by a rich assortment of tools including Python scripting, TCL scripting, the Cisco One Platform Kit, OnePK and OpenFlow.
Like all current high-end Nexus switches, Nexus 5600 models incorporate Cisco's Fabric Extenders (FEX) architecture. Cisco FEX Technology allows the use of a parent switch, which can be a Nexus 5000 Series platform or above, that can be extended to connect to the server via Nexus 2000 Series Fabric Extenders. FEX Technology provides a uniform server access architecture to expand the fabric to handle more than 2300 1GE/10GE ports. All these Ethernet ports can be efficiently managed from a single parent switch.
The Nexus 5672UP switch has a 1RU form factor and no expansion slots and is optimized for top-of-rack access. The Nexus 5672UP has 48 built-in 10-GE ports, which includes 16 Unified Ports for Ethernet, FCoE, or 2/4/8-gigabit Fibre Channel (FC). The switch also includes six true QSFP 40-GE uplink ports. Port density for 1/10 GE or 10-Gbps FCoE ports is a maximum of 72. The 5672UP supports 24 L2/L3 fabric extenders for up to 1152 ports in one management domain. Switching capacity is 1.44 Tbps and latency is 1 microsecond. The Nexus 56128P is a 2RU switch with two expansion slots intended for top-of-rack deployment in traditional, virtualized, and cloud environments. The Nexus 56128P has 48 built-in 10-GE ports, all of which are Unified Ports. The switch can also support 8 true 40GE QSFP ports and 48 Fibre Channel ports via expansion modules, allowing a total of 128 10GE ports. Support for 24 L2/L3 fabric extenders permits up to 1152 ports to share a single point of management. Switching capacity is 2.56 Tbps and latency is 1 microsecond.
Cisco's Nexus 5600 series 40-Gbps switches include 1RU, 2RU, and 4RU platforms that provide 10 and 40 Gigabit Ethernet and FCoE with L2 and L3 features at wire speed and 1 microsecond latency for any packet size. Cisco's Nexus 5624Q is a 1RU switch with a single expansion slot and supports 1.92 Tbps of bandwidth across 12 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports. 12 more 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports can be added with a hot-swappable generic expansion module (GEM) for a total of 24 10-GE ports. Up to 96 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports can be supported with the use of breakout cables. The 5624Q supports 24 L2/L3 fabric extenders for up to 1152 ports. Cisco's Nexus 5648Q is a 2RU switch with two expansion slots and support for 3.84 Tbps of switching capacity. The Nexus 5648Q includes 24 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports and supports 24 additional 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports via GEM expansion modules for a total of 48 10-GE ports. 192 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports can be supported.
The top-of-the-line Nexus 5696Q is a 4RU switch with no fixed ports but with eight hot-swappable expansion slots and has the ability to deliver 7.68 Tbps of switching performance. With all eight Line-Card Expansion Modules (LEMs) installed, the Cisco Nexus 5696Q can support 96 40-GE ports or 384 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports. In addition, the Nexus 5696Q accepts a 100 Gigabit Ethernet LEM expansion module with four 100-Gbps CXP ports, making it possible to support a total of 32 100-GE ports. Like the 5648Q, the Nexus 5696Q supports up to 48 L2 and 24 L3 fabric extenders.
Cisco Nexus 6000 Series Switches
Cisco Nexus 6000 Series switches are Small Form Factor (SFF) platforms designed to provide high port density access-layer switching for 10 Gigabit Ethernet, 40 Gigabit Ethernet, and Fibre-Channel over Ethernet (FCoE). Their ability to consolidate large numbers of Ethernet servers with minimal latency makes Nexus 6000 Series switches suitable for applications such as high-performance computing (HPC) and high-frequency trading (HFT). Nexus 6000 Series switches can support up to 2304 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet server ports in a single management domain with Cisco Nexus 2000 Series Fabric Extenders (FEX).
Cisco has announced end-of-life for Nexus 6000 series
The Nexus 6001P is a fixed-port 1RU switch that can be deployed as a top-of-rack switch for direct-attach 10 Gigabit Ethernet server-access and fabric extender aggregation. The Cisco Nexus 6001P includes 48 fixed 1/10 Gigabit SFP+ ports and four 40-GE QSFP+ ports used as uplinks. Each 40 Gigabit Ethernet port can be divided into four 10-GE Ethernet ports using a QSFP+ breakout cable, allowing a total of 64 wire-speed 10-GE ports. Switching capacity is 1.28 Tbps. Cisco's expandable Nexus 6004EF model is a 4RU 10 and 40 Gigabit Ethernet and FCoE switch with eight hot-swappable expansion slots offering up to 7.68 Tbps of switching capacity. The extensible architecture of the Nexus 6004EF allows it to be used in applications that can range from entry-level data centers to high-end Cloud environments. Each LEM expansion module includes 12 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet and FCoE ports using a Quad Small Form-Factor Pluggable (QSFP) interface. Fully populated, the Cisco Nexus 6004EF offers 96 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet or 384 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet (SFP+) using breakout cables.
Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Switches and Nexus 7700 Series Switches
Cisco's modular Nexus 7000 Series switches and Nexus 7700 Series switches, which have the same system architecture and use the same NX-OS software releases, provide density, speed, scale, and high availability for data center and campus core environments and for data center aggregation, end-of-row, and DCI deployments. Available in chassis with from one to 16 I/O module slots and offering up to 83 Tbps of switching capacity, Nexus 7000 and Nexus 7700 platforms offer the industry's highest densities for 10-, 40-, and 100-Gbit Ethernet ports. The NAM-NX1 Network Analysis Module for Nexus 7000 and 7700 Series switches provides the visibility needed for managing mission-critical applications such as Citrix products, Oracle Business Intelligence, and Microsoft SQL Server. The NAM-NX1 also extends network visibility to Cisco's virtualization and overlay technologies including Overlay Transport Virtualization (OTV), Locator/ID Separation Protocol (LISP), and Virtual Extensible LAN (VXLAN).
Nexus 7000 Series switches are available in 4-, 9-, 10-, and 18-slot chassis in 7, 14, 21, and 25 Rack Unit form factors respectively. Two slots provide supervisor redundancy and the remaining slots accept a variety of I/O modules. A fully populated 18-slot Nexus 7000 can support up to 768 1/10-GE ports, 192 40-GE ports, or 12 100-GE ports. Maximum switching capacity is 17.6 Tbps. Nexus 7700 Series switches are offered in 2-, 6-, 10-, and 18-slot chassis in 3, 9, 14, and 26 Rack Unit sizes respectively. With the exception of the 2-slot version, two slots are available for supervisor redundancy. A fully loaded 18-slot Nexus 7700 can support up to 768 1/10-GE ports, 384 40-GE ports, or 192 100-GE ports. Maximum switching capacity is 83 Tbps, making the top-of-the-line Nexus 7700 suitable for the largest cloud environments.
Cisco Nexus 9000 Series Switches
Cisco's Nexus 9000 series switches are intended for small-to-midsize data centers and include both modular and fixed-configuration devices. Most models in the extensive Nexus 9000 product family can operate in Cisco NX-OS or Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) mode. ACI provides an advanced software-defined networking (SDN) architecture for creating fully automated, policy-based data centers. Various models available in the Nexus 9000 family can be used for aggregation/spine, access/leaf, top of rack, end of row, or backbone and router interconnect. Nexus 9000 switches offer up to 172.8 Tbps of nonblocking performance and down to sub-microsecond latency.
Cisco's Nexus 9200 switches are fixed-configuration data center switches that feature high density, low latency and support for Cisco's NX-OS operating system. ACI mode is not supported. Designed for programmable fabric, the Nexus 9200 series of compact switches offer the scalability, flexibility and performance suitable for service providers and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) cloud providers. The Nexus 92160YC-X switch is a 1-rack-unit designed for top-of-rack (ToR) use and includes 48 1/10/25-Gbps SFP+ host ports and six QSFP28 hybrid uplink ports of which four are capable of 100Gbps. Switching capacity is 3.2 Tbps. Cisco's Nexus 9272Q switch, intended for ToR or aggregation usage, has a 2-RU form factor, includes 72 40-Gb ports, and supports up to 5.76 Tbps of line-rate routing capacity. The 2RU Nexus 92304QC switch is designed for ToR or aggregation use, can be configured for up to 56 40-Gbps ports and 8 100-Gbps ports, and offers throughput of 6.08 Tbps. The 1RU Nexus 9236C switch is designed for access and aggregation, includes 36 100-GE ports, and supports bandwidth of 7.2 Tbps.
Cisco's Nexus 9300 family of fixed-port switches are optimized for use as ToR, middle-of-row (MoR) and ACI leaf switches in enterprise data centers, service provider hosting deployments, and cloud computing environments. Some Cisco Nexus 9300 switches include an uplink module slot for adding extra ports. All models within the Nexus 9300 line can be run in standard Cisco Nexus NX-OS mode or in Cisco ACI mode to support advanced automated, policy-based systems-management. The Nexus 9372TX and Nexus 9372TX-E are 1RU switches designed for access and aggregation and includes 48 fixed 1/10GBASE-T ports and 6 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports. The 1/10GBase-T ports can run at 100 Mbps, 1 Gbps, and 10 Gbps, and support a total bandwidth of 1.44 Tbps. The Cisco Nexus 9396TX is a 2-rack-unit switch with 48 10GBase-T ports that can operate at up to 10 Gbps, an uplink module that can support up to 12 QSFP+ uplinks, and total throughput of 1.92 Tbps. The Nexus 93120TX is a 2RU switch with 96 fixed 1/10G BASE-T ports and 6 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP ports and 2.4 Tbps throughput. The Nexus 93128TX is a 3RU switch designed for ToR and MoR deployments with fixed 1/10GBASE-T ports and an uplink module capable of supporting up to 8 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports. Max supported bandwidth is 2.56 Tbps. The Nexus 93108TC-EX is a 1RU switch with eight 10GBASE-T downlink ports that can work as 100-Mbps, 1‑Gbps, or 10-Gbps ports. The uplink can support up to six 40- and 100-Gbps ports, or a combination of 10-, 25-, 40‑, 50-, and 100-Gbps ports to facilitate migrations. Maximum throughput is 2.16 Tbps.
Cisco Nexus 9372PX and 9372PX-E switches are 1RU switches with 48 fixed 1/10-Gbps SFP+ and 6 fixed 40-Gbps fixed QSFP+ ports, supporting up to 1.44 Tbps of bandwidth. The Cisco Nexus 9396PX is a 2RU switch with 48 fixed 1/10-Gbps SFP+ ports and an uplink module that supports up to 12 fixed 40-Gbps QSFP+ ports. Throughput is up to 1.92 Tbps. The Nexus 93180YC-EX is a 1 RU switch with sub-microsecond latency and 3.6 Tbps throughput. The 48 downlink ports on the 93180YC-EX can be configured to work as 1-, 10-, or 25-Gbps ports. The uplink supports up to six 40 GE and 100 GE ports, or a mix of 10 GE, 25 GE, 40 GE, 50 GE, and 100 GE ports. Cisco's Nexus 9332PQ is a 1-rack-unit switch includes 32 40-Gbps Enhanced QSFP+ ports and supports 2.56 of throughput at line rate. The Nexus 9336PQ ACI Spine Switch, designed for small and mid-size ACI environments, is a 2RU switch that includes 36 fixed QSFP+ ports and provides up to 2.88 Tbps of throughput. The Nexus 93180YC-EX is a 1RU switch with 48 10/25-Gbps SFP+ ports and 6 40/100-Gbps Quad SFP+ (QSFP+) uplink ports. Maximum bandwidth is 3.6 Tbps.
Cisco's Nexus 9500 series of programmable switches are based on modular chassis with varying numbers of slots for high performance Gigabit Ethernet line cards. Each chassis model also has two hot-swappable supervisor slots, six fabric module slots, plus hot-swappable system controllers, power supplies, and fan trays. Nexus 9500 switches are designed for use as aggregation or core switches (spines) and can run in standalone NX-OS or ACI mode. The Nexus 9505 is a 7RU switch with four line card slots and can support up to 192 1/10G BASE-T ports, 576 10GE ports, 144 40GE ports, or 128 100GE ports. Max nonblocking performance is 15 Tbps. Cisco's Nexus 9508 is a 13RU switch with eight line card slots and can support up to 384 1/10G BASE-T ports, 1,152 10GE ports, 288 40GE ports, or 288 100GE ports. Nonblocking performance is 30 Tbps. The high-end Nexus 9516 is a 21RU switch with 16 line card slots and supports up to 768 1/10G BASE-T ports, 2,304 10GE ports, 576 40GE ports, or 128 100GE ports. Nonblocking performance is 60 Tbps.
Progent's Consulting and Support Services for Cisco Nexus Switches
Progent's Cisco CCIE-certified network consultants can provide remote and on-premises consulting and troubleshooting services for Cisco's entire line of Nexus switches. Progent has experience working with organizations of all sizes to deliver switching solutions based on Cisco Nexus, Catalyst and Meraki product families. Available services offered by Progent for Nexus technology includes needs analysis, solution design, pilot testing, project management or co-management services, configuration, capacity planning, performance optimization, monitoring and analysis, LAN/SAN convergence, virtualization, wired/wireless convergence, simplified management solutions, troubleshooting, disaster recovery and business continuity planning, and security expertise. Progent can also help you evaluate the advantages of moving from legacy switches to current technology and can help you create and implement a cost-effective migration plan that adds maximum value to your business network.
Progent can provide expertise with a variety of tools available for deploying and managing Nexus switches including Python and Tool Command Language (TCL) scripting, the Cisco One Platform Kit (OnePK), OpenFlow, XML, Scriptable CLI, and Cisco Data Center Network Manager (DCNM) web services. Progent also has extensive experience with switching, routing and virtualization technologies including OSPF, Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), VLANs, Virtual Private LAN Services (VPLS), Virtual Device Context (VDC), VXLAN, Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM), VPNs, Spanning Tree Protocol (STP), FabricPath, Fabric Extender Technology (FEX), for Virtual Port Channels (vPC), OTV, Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP), Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (VRRP), OSPF, and LISP. Progent also offers expertise in fundamental networking technologies including TCP/IP, IPv4, IPv6, EIGRP, RIP, and IGMP. Progent's CISSP certified cybersecurity consultants can help you create and validate a security strategy to comply with industry, regulatory, and in-house standards.
Contact Progent about Consulting Services for Cisco Nexus Switches
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