Cisco's Catalyst line of modular and fixed switches provides speed and control at the access, aggregation, and backbone areas of converged IP voice, HD video, and data networks for organizations that range from small businesses and branches to global enterprises and SPs. Progent's Cisco-certified CCIE consultants offer remote and onsite support for Catalyst switches to assist your organization to plan an efficient network architecture that addresses your unique business needs, configure proof-of-concept testing, deploy Catalyst switches, establish and verify a sensible security plan, automate system management and performance tracking, provide troubleshooting and support services, optimize switch capacity, and configure Catalyst's fault-tolerant solutions to achieve near-zero downtime,
Progent can assist you to maintain and repair your older Catalyst switches or migrate smoothly to current versions of Catalyst switches following leading practices to ensure that you get the highest business value from your investment in your network.
The demand for intelligent, fast switching is the result 0f a confluence of fairly new computing patterns whose overall effect is a cyber avalanche of traffic:
- Cloud networking and an associated demand for massive virtualization
- The pervasiveness of BYOD computing
- Bandwidth-intensive rich media apps
- Social business technologies
- The rise of Big Data in enterprise analytics
Private, public and hybrid clouds are only operationally realistic because of virtualization technology. Virtualized infrastructures slash costs by allowing aggressively high resource utilization and demanding minimal data center space and power consumption. However this also requires that comparatively limited network resources must support large volumes of traffic. The Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) paradigm has resulted in a dramatic increase in the amount of mobile users that must be supported by IT networks, and these clients tend to run a high percentage of data-intensive, HD video apps. Social media for business is replacing traditional email as the primary driver for collaboration and is generating an ever increasing demand for data. Businesses who are trying to remain competitive are resorting to Big Data technology to mine vast and varied silos of information, which in turn generates Big Traffic. All of these computing trends are fairly new, and put together they create a serious need for a new class of switches that feature significantly more throughput, control, uptime and manageability than previous solutions were designed to provide.
Cisco's current lineup of Catalyst switches are best suited for the distribution/core levels of campus deployments where mobile and stationary employees must be provided for by offering unvarying high throughput, strict access management, tight group isolation, application intelligence, and wired and wireless convergence. Catalyst switches are designed to meet the need for speed and intelligence with capabilities that include high-density 10G/40G/100G services, switching performance of up to 11.4 Tbps for each switch and double that per switching system, a powerful catalog of tools such as EVN to simplify the deployment of VLANs, VSS technology for stateful interchassis failover with instant backup switch restoration and 99.999% availability, IPv6 support, Application Visibility and Control (AVC) to maximize system utilization, and sophisticated Quality of Service capabilities for video data control.
Cisco Offers Catalyst Switching Solutions for Organizations of All Sizes
Cisco Catalyst switches allow organizations of any size to benefit from incorporating smart switching features into their network architecture, creating an environment that can meet current needs, scale to accommodate future capacity demands, protect sensitive data, and differentiate and control processes to enhance network productivity.
Cisco Catalyst 2960 Swiches and Catalyst 3560-CX Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-CX is a fixed-configuration managed switch that is compact, fanless, low power, and allows a variety of mounting alternatives. The device incorporates eight 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports and two Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports and optionally provides PoE+ power. Cisco's Catalyst 3560-CX is a fixed-port managed switch housed in a compact, noiseless and energy-efficient unit that can be mounted virtually anywhere outside a wiring closet. Versions are offered with eight or 12 1-GE ports or with six 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports plus 2 multigigabit ports. Up to four uplinks are available, and Power over Ethernet (PoE) is also available.
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-L line consists of value-priced fixed-port managed switches intended for small offices, retail venues, and other environments where space is limited. Catalyst 2900-L compact switches include eight to 48 GE ports and either two or four SFP uplink ports. Power over Ethernet support saves space and fanless operation for the 8- models does away with noise. RJ-45 connectors accommodate 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T and 1000BASE-T SFP-ports.
Catalyst 2960-X and 2960-XR switches improve on the 2690-S family of switches by offering switching capacity of 216 Gbps and supporting Cisco's FlexStack-Plus stacking technology via a live-swappable module that allows 8 Catalyst switches in a FlexStack Plus stack with 80 Gbps of stacking throughput. Cisco Catalyst 2900 family switches also work with NetFlow-Lite for application visibility and control. The Catalyst 2960-XR Series switch features Layer 3 dynamic routing, offering the convenience of having a single switch for Layer 2 and Layer 3 routing.
Cisco Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 Series Switches
Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 switches are fixed, stackable network access devices powered by Cisco's IOS XE operating system and featuring full wireless network controller capability that lets you control wired and wireless infrastructure on a single device powered by a single operating system. Cisco has versions with 24 or 48 built-in 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections with PoE+, four 1-Gigabit or four 10-GB Ethernet uplinks, and support for as many as nine switches in a stack. All versions provide modular Quality of Service, fast failover for maximum availability, support in software for IPv4/IPv6 routing, multicast, and advanced security features.
Since wireless traffic is present at the Catalyst 3000 family switch, it is possible to spot and prioritize wireless data with Cisco's Flexible NetFlow solution and advanced QoS features for an improved wireless user environment and quicker problem isolation. Multigigabit Ethernet switching can handle the high-bandwidth called for by the latest 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi specification using existing cabling infrastructure. (For information about Progent's support for Cisco's 802.11ac Wi-Fi access points and wireless controllers, and Cisco's Meraki cloud-managed Wi-Fi access points, refer to Planning and Deployment Consulting Services for Cisco Wireless Products.)
The Cisco Catalyst 3650 delivers stacking throughput of up to 160 Gbps and supports up to 25 wireless APs and 1000 wireless clients per switch. The Catalyst 3850 switch offers stacking performance of up to 480 Gbps and can control as many as 50 Wi-Fi access points and 2000 wireless users on each stack. Cisco Catalyst 3850 SFP Fiber Switches incorporate 12 or 24 1G fiber data ports at line rate on every port, offering far reaching connectivity, advanced protection, and a consistent wired/wireless user experience.
Catalyst 4500-E Series and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Catalyst 4500-E and and Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are designed for access and distribution environments where space for networking equipment is limited. Running Cisco's IOS XE operating system, the 4500-E and Catalyst 4500-X families simplify network virtualization thanks to Cisco's EVN and Virtual Switching System (VSS) solutions. Network virtualization allows you to segment a hardware network into multiple virtual networks (VNs) whose data planes and control planes are logically segregated. This provides the high resource utilization, security and compliance, recoverability, and simplified management required for Cloud computing or other situations where a common infrastructure is used by applications and services that must operate in total isolation from one another. Easy Virtual Network streamlines the task of creating VNs and scales to 32 VNs for each switch. Easy Virtual Network incorporates features of Multi-virtual routing and forwarding (VRF) and includes new features including VNET Trunks and an easy way for duplicating replicating routes connecting VNs. VSS technology makes it possible to set up Catalyst 4500-E and 4500-X Series platforms to produce zero-downtime virtual networks with optimized load balancing.
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Switches
Cisco's Supervisor Engine 8-E for the Catalyst 4500-E switch includes an integrated wireless network controller that supports Cisco's Unified Access technology for wired and wireless convergence. this is the initial Cisco Catalyst supervisor engine to allow wired plus wireless services on a single platform powered by IOS XE software. Technologies included are Cisco's FNF technology for capacity planning encompassing wired and wireless networks, Cisco TrustSec/SGT2 wired and wireless security, consistent Quality of Service for wired and wireless clients, plus the expansion of Nonstop Forwarding with Stateful Switchover to include Wi-Fi data traffic for enterprise-class availability.
Offered in chassis with from three to 10 plug-in slots, Cisco Catalyst 4500-E switches can handle up to 384 1-Gigabit Ethernet access ports, 193 1GE fiber fiber connections, 96 10-Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, and eight 10-Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports. Cisco's Supervisor Engine 8-E provides as much as 928 Gbps of wired access per system and up to 20 Gbps of wireless termination capacity. 50 Wi-Fi APs and 2000 wireless users can be handled per chassis, and 250 APs and 4000 clients can be managed in a two-switch installation without a standalone wireless controller.
Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 4500-X switches are fixed-configuration 10-Gigabit Ethernet aggregation platforms that deliver up to 800 Gbps of backplane switching capacity per chassis. The Catalyst 4500-X supports as many as 32 10-Gigabit Ethernet connections on the unit's baseboard and eight extra 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports on the expansion module for a maximum of up to 40 10-Gigabit Ethernet connections. Eight 10GE uplinks are also available via another module. In addition to providing zero-downtime performance and simple management, Cisco's VSS technology on Catalyst 4500-X switches provides higher system performance of up to 1.6 Tbps by enabling all possible capacity across VSS-linked Catalyst 4500-X switches. Other features include Cisco's Flexible NetFlow technology for application visibility, TrustSec security, and wire-rate IPv6 forwarding.
Catalyst 6500 and Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6500 Series and Cisco Catalyst 6800 switches are campus core platforms that share the field-proven technology of the Catalyst 6500 line of switches, which were introduced more than a dozen years ago and which have been steadily enhanced ever since. Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series and Catalyst 6800 switches offer identical general features and operation, and the modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL supports the Catalyst 6500 Series Supervisor Engine 2T and its portfolio of compatible line cards and modules. This cross compatibility and program of ongoing enhancement preserves your technology expenditures and enables you to upgrade your network with little downtime or management team retraining.
Shared features of Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series and Catalyst 6800 Series modular switches equipped with Cisco's Supervisor Engine 2T include Cisco's Identity Services Engine for convenient, single-point control to put in place consistent policy across a distributed network, VSS Quad Sup SSO (VS4O) capability for maximum availability through multi-level switchover, and the Cisco Campus Locator/ID Separation Protocol (LISP) to facilitate client roaming and device mobility and to simplify virtualization and transition to IPv6. Additional virtualization tools to segment specific client groups and serve the special security and QoS policy needs of every group include L2/L3 VPN, full MPLS, EVN, VPN Routing and Forwarding-aware applications for Network Address Translation (NAT) NetFlow, IPv6 over IPv4 GRE Tunnel Protection, and L2 geographic extensions with VPLS. For unified wired/wireless environments, the Wireless Services Module 2 for Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series modular switches includes support for up to 1000 wireless access points and 15,000 wireless clients.
Catalyst 6500-E Series Switches
The Catalyst 6500-E Series of modular switches are designed for distribution and enterprise core environments that need world-class uptime and high densities of 10/100/1000 Ethernet, 1 GE fiber, and/or 10 and 40 GE access ports. Models have three to 13 slots and work with a broad range of modules. Integrated service modules enable wireless management, traffic monitoring, and security and compliance. Just E-Series versions of Cisco's extensive family of 6500 switches work with the Supervisor Engine 2T.
The value-priced Cisco Catalyst 6503-E switch has a 4RU form factor, holds 3 expansion slots, and delivers as much as 180 Gbps of switching performance per slot. The Catalyst 6503-E switch supports 97 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections, up to 99 Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, 34 10GE ports, and 8 40-Gigabit Ethernet access ports.
The top-of-the-line Cisco Catalyst 6513-E has a 19RU, 13-slot chassis and offers up to 180 Gbps of throughput per slot, providing a system capacity as high as 4 Tbps. A VSS configured system can support up to 8 Tbps of bandwidth. The Cisco Catalyst 6513-E Series switch supports up to 529 1 Gigabit Ethernet ports, up to 534 Gigabit Ethernet fiber ports, 180 10GE connections, and 44 40GE connections.
Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 6800 switches are programmable core switches intended to deliver optimal 10/40/100 GE services. The Catalyst 6880-X switch is a fixed, small form factor platform for high-density Ethernet intended for small or midsize campus backbones. The Catalyst 6880-X switch delivers up to 2 Tbps throughput and has four slots for plug-in port cards. The maximum port density on one chassis is 80 1 Gigabit Ethernet ports or 10GE connections or up to 20 40GE connections. Configured with VSS, a two-chassis system can deliver 4 Tbps bandwidth and support as many as 158 1 Gigabit Ethernet connections or 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports or as many as 20 40GE connections.
The modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL switch has a 10-rack-unit form factor chassis that has 7 expansion slots and accepts existing Supervisor Engine 2T cards and modules. (Two slots are for the Supervisor Engine and the other five are for expansion modules.) The Catalyst 6807-XL offers as much as 880 Gbps of switching bandwidth per slot and 11.4 Tbps of switching capacity while supporting up to 240 1 Gigabit Ethernet connections or 1GE fiber ports, up to 80 10-Gigabit Ethernet access ports or 20 40GE ports. A two-chassis 6807-XL system configured with VSS is capable of supporting 22.8 Tbps of switching performance, 480 1 Gigabit Ethernet connections or Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, up to 160 10GE access ports or 40 40GE ports.
End-of-Life Catalyst Switches Supported by Progent
Progent's Cisco certified consultants have extensive backgrounds delivering remote and on-premises support services for legacy Catalyst switches which have reached End of Life. These legacy switches usually are more expensive to manage and support than current switches, provide lower capacity and functionality, and for many cases may expose businesses to compliance and liability risks. Progent can assist you to manage and troubleshoot these older Cisco products and can in addition help you to design and carry out non-disruptive upgrades to newer products from the Catalyst family or to devices from Cisco's Nexus portfolio of switches which take advantage of Catalyst technology. Legacy Cisco Catalyst models for which support is available from Progent include:
Cisco Catalyst Express 500 and 520 Line
Cisco's Catalyst Express 500 line of managed Ethernet switches are designed for organizations with up to 250 employees and provide the dependability, security, scalability, and feature set small companies need at an affordable cost. Power over Ethernet capability makes it simple to install network devices like VoIP phones and IP TV cameras.
Versions of the Catalyst Express 500 and 520 switches support from 8 to 24 10/100/1000BASE-T ports plus optional redundant power supplies with automatic switch-over for additional dependability. Integration with Cisco access points allows organizations to build a local wireless network rapidly and effectively. The Cisco Catalyst Express 500 and 520 platform provides strong security against viruses With Cisco's Self-Defending Network strategy and Cisco Clean Access solutions.
Catalyst 2940 Switch
Cisco Catalyst 2900 Series non-modular, managed 10/100 switches offer fundamental workgroup networking for small to medium-size companies. These wire-speed desktop appliances deliver IOS Software functions for basic mixed-media traffic support at the edge of the network. The Cisco 2940 line of managed switches are compact, entry-level switches with 8 Ethernet connections plus a single integrated Fast Ethernet or Gbit Ethernet uplink. They can be installed away from the wiring cabinet in space-constrained office spaces such as on or under a worker's desk or in a conference room.
Cisco Catalyst 2960-S Series Switch
The Cisco Catalyst 2960-S Series are fixed switches intended for small companies and branches. Available models have either 24 or 48 1Gb Ethernet ports, four 1-Gigabit or two 10-Gigabit uplink ports, and deliver switching capacity of up to 176 Gbps. Cisco's FlexStack feature allows as many as four 2960-S switches to be grouped in a FlexStack stack to act like a single switch that offers 40 Gbps of stacking performance and that cuts administrative expense with single-switch configuration. IPv6 FHS capability protects against address theft and malicious attacks.
Cisco Catalyst 3560 Series Switches
The Catalyst 3560 Series is a line of non-modular switches that features IEEE 802.3af and Cisco Power over Ethernet (PoE) functionality in 10/100 Ethernet and 10/100/1000 Ethernet configurations. The Catalyst 3560 Series switch is a proven Layer 2 switch for midsize business LAN connectivity or local-office environments, offering both Gigabit Ethernet and Power over Ethernet configurations for high efficiency while streamlining the installation of key technology including Voice over IP, wireless connectivity, video monitoring, and building management systems. Customers can deploy network-wide intelligent features such as quality of service (QoS), rate limiting, ACLs, multicast management, and fast IP routing with the simplicity of traditional LAN switching.
Cisco's Catalyst 3560 Series switch is equipped with a powerful array of features that permit network scalability and higher availability via IP routing as well as a full suite of STP improvements aimed to increase availability in an access Layer network. Enhancements to the conventional STP Protocol, including PVST+, and Port Fast, as well as enhancements such as Flex Links, improve network efficiency. PVST+ allows for Data Link Layer load sharing on redundant connections to take advantage of the extra bandwidth inherent in a redundant design.
Important routing protocols including Open Shortest Path First (OPSF), Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol, Border Gateway Protocol, static routing, and Policy Based Routing improve system capacity; Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM) increases the efficiency of system resource use; and Virtual Route Forwarding Lite secures data.
Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series Switches
For mid-size businesses and enterprise branch offices, the Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series switch eases deployment of unified technologies and adapts to changing business needs by providing setup versatility, ability to manage unified network traffic, and management-free configuration of smart network services. Also, the Cisco Catalyst 3750 switch is engineered for high-volume Gigabit deployments and includes a diverse selection of switches that meet the access, distribution, and backbone-connectivity demands of small or midsized systems.
The Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series includes either the IP Base image or the Services image. The IP Base image functions include advanced quality of service, rate-management, ACLs, and basic static and Routing Information Protocol (RIP) routing support. The IP Services image provides a broader set of enterprise-level functions, including advanced built-in IP unicast/multicast routing.
StackWise technology is a mechanism optimized for Gigabit interfaces. This technology is intended to react to additions, deletions, and relocations while maintaining consistent performance. StackWise unites up to 9 separate switches into a single logical device, utilizing custom stack-interconnect cables and stacking software. Any of the switches can be any mix of Cisco's Catalyst 3750 switches and the Catalyst 3750-E switches. The stack operates as an individual switching device that is directed by a control switch, chosen from one of the member switches. The control switch intelligently builds and keeps current all the switching and user-selected routing databases. A working stack can accommodate new switches or remove old members without service discontinuity.
How Progent Can Assist Your Business with Catalyst Switches
Progent offers the remote or onsite services of CCIE-certified consultants who have extensive backgrounds providing Catalyst switch technology solutions for small and midsize organizations, branches, campuses, data centers, Cloud environments, and service providers. Progent's practice areas include Cisco's Catalyst and Nexus lines of smart switches and with Cisco's IOS, IOS-XR and NX-OS control software. Services available from Progent for Cisco Catalyst Series switches include pilot testing, network analysis, network architecture planning, upgrades and project management, virtualization, wired and wireless convergence, management automation, capacity planning, troubleshooting, business continuity planning, and information security and compliance assessment and validation.
Progent's Cisco-certified consultants have deep expertise with open standards as well as with proprietary Cisco technologies related to switching and routing such as Border Gateway Protocol, MPLS traffic engineering, Protocol Independent Multicast, VPNs, ISIS, VLANs, FabricPath, Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP), VRRP, Open Shortest Path First (OSPF), VSS, and Locator/ID Separation Protocol (LISP). Progent's infrastructure consultants also offer deep knowledge of key networking technologies such as TCP/IP, IPv4/IPv6, EIGRP, Routing Information Protocol (RIP), and IGMP. Progent's CISSP-ISSAP certified network security consultants can show you how to develop an enterprise-wide security plan and deploy Cisco Catalyst switches so that they offer optimal support for your network security posture.
If you require ultra high Ethernet density or sub-microsecond latency Cisco switches for a world-class data center, Progent can help your organization to analyze, design, and manage a transition to Nexus switches. To find out about Progent's support capabilities for Nexus Series switches, refer to Nexus Switch consulting offered by Progent. Progent can also assist you to connect Catalyst core switches with Cisco Meraki aggregation switches. (See Cisco Meraki switch integration consultants.)
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