The Catalyst line of modular and fixed-configuration managed switches provides performance and intelligence at the access, aggregation, and core levels of converged voice, HD video, and data networks for organizations that range in size from small businesses and branch offices to multi-campus enterprises and SPs. Progent's Cisco-certified CCIE consultants offer online and on-premises expertise with Catalyst family switches to help your organization to plan a cost-effective infrastructure that addresses your unique business needs, configure pilot testing, install Catalyst switches, establish and verify a sensible security and compliance plan, automate system management and monitoring, provide troubleshooting and maintenance services, optimize switch performance, and set up Catalyst's fault-tolerant technology to achieve near-zero downtime,
Progent can help you to maintain and troubleshoot your legacy Catalyst switches or upgrade seamlessly to up-to-date versions of Catalyst switches following leading practices to make sure that you receive the most return from your investment in your network.
The need for intelligent, high-performance switching is the result 0f a combination of fairly new computing patterns whose net impact is a virtual avalanche of traffic:
- Cloud computing and an associated requirement for massive virtualization
- The pervasiveness of BYOD computing
- Bandwidth-intensive rich media applications
- Social media for business
- The rise of Big Data in enterprise analytics
Private, public and hybrid clouds are only made practical by utilizing network virtualization. Virtualized infrastructures slash expenses by allowing very high resource utilization and requiring very little real estate and energy use. But this also means that relatively limited network resources have to accommodate large amounts of data. The BYOD revolution has caused a steep increase in the amount of mobile clients that have be supported by IT networks, and these clients run a great deal of bandwidth-intensive, HD video apps. Social media for business is displacing traditional email as the main enabler of workforce collaboration and is producing an ever increasing thirst for data. Enterprises who are trying to stay competitive are resorting to Big Data techniques to mine vast and varied silos of information, which in turn generates Big Network Traffic. These computing trends are fairly new, and combined they cause a serious need for an advanced class of switches that feature much higher throughput, control, uptime and ease of management than previous solutions were engineered to provide.
Cisco's latest lineup of Catalyst switches are designed for the distribution/core levels of campus environments where office workers must be provided for by offering predictable high speed, secure user access control, careful segmentation, application awareness, and wired and wireless convergence. Cisco's Catalyst switches address the need for performance and control with features such as high-port-count 10, 40, and 100 Gigabit Ethernet support, switching performance as high as 11 Tbps per switch and double that for each switching system, a comprehensive collection of technologies such as EVN to facilitate the deployment of virtual networks, Virtual Switching System technology for stateful interchassis failover with subsecond virtual switch restoration and "five nines" (99.999%) availability, IPv6 capability, Application Visibility and Control to maximize system resource usage, and advanced Quality of Service (QoS) capabilities for HD video data prioritization.
Cisco Has Developed Catalyst Switches for Businesses of Any Size
Catalyst switches enable businesses of all sizes to benefit from incorporating smart switching services into their network architecture, creating an environment that can handle current requirements, scale to support expected growth, protect sensitive data, and separate and manage tasks to optimize network productivity.
Catalyst 2960 Series Switches and Catalyst 3560-CX Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-CX is a fixed-port managed switch that is ultra-compact, fanless, power efficient, and allows flexible mounting alternatives. The switch has eight 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports and two Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports and has an option for Power over Ethernet (PoE). Cisco's Catalyst 3560-CX appliance is a fixed-port managed switch housed in a sleek, quiet and energy-efficient unit that can be placed almost anywhere outside a wiring closet. Versions are available with eight or 12 1-GE ports or with six 1-GE ports plus two multigigabit Ethernet ports. Up to four uplink ports are available, and Power over Ethernet is also an option.
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-L family consists of entry-level fixed-configuration switches designed for branch offices, retail venues, and other places where space is at a premium. Catalyst 2900-L compact switches have eight to 48 Gigabit Ethernet ports and 2 or 4 Small Form-Factor Pluggable (SFP) uplink ports. Power over Ethernet support saves space and fanless operation for most versions does away with noise. RJ-45 connectors support 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T and 1000BASE-T SFP-based ports.
Catalyst 2960-X and 2960-XR Series switches improve on the 2690-S family of switches by delivering switching performance as high as 216 Gbps and providing Cisco's FlexStack-Plus Stacking via a live-swappable plug-in that allows 8 switches in a stack with 80 Gbps of stacking performance. Catalyst 2900 Series switches also work with NetFlow-Lite for flow-based traffic monitoring. Cisco's Catalyst 2960-XR Series switch features Layer 3 dynamic routing, offering the convenience of having a single switch for L2 and L3 routing.
Cisco Catalyst 3650 and 3850 Switches
Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 switches are fixed, stackable access devices based on Cisco's IOS XE OS and incorporating comprehensive wireless controller capability that lets you control wired and wireless infrastructure on a single device powered by one operating system. Cisco has models with either 24 or 48 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections with PoE+, four 1-Gigabit or four 10GE uplink ports, and capacity for up to 9 switches in a stack. All models provide expandable Quality of Service, fast switchover for maximum availability, support in software for IPv4/IPv6 routing, multicast routing, and advanced security features.
Since wireless traffic is visible at the Catalyst 3000 Series switch, network managers can identify and prioritize wireless traffic by means of Cisco's Flexible NetFlow technology and advanced Quality of Service capabilities for an improved user experience and quicker problem mediation. Fast Ethernet switching supports the high-bandwidth defined by the new 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi standard using currently in-place cabling solutions. (To find out about Progent's consulting services for Cisco's 802.11ac Wi-Fi products, and Cisco's Meraki cloud-managed APs, refer to Configuration and Troubleshooting Support for Cisco Wireless Access Points and Controllers.)
The Catalyst 3650 Series switch offers stacking bandwidth of up to 160 Gbps and can control as many as 25 Wi-Fi APs and 1000 wireless clients on each switch. The Catalyst 3850 delivers stacking throughput of up to 480 Gbps and can control up to 50 wireless APs and 2000 wireless users per stack. Cisco Catalyst 3850 SFP Fiber Switches incorporate 12 or 24 1G fiber data ports at line rate, providing long distance connections, advanced protection, and a consistent wired/wireless user experience.
Cisco Catalyst 4500-E Series and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 4500-E Series and and Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are designed for campus and distribution environments where physical space for infrastructure equipment is at a premium. Running Cisco's IOS XE software, the Catalyst 4500-E and 4500-X families facilitate network virtualization thanks to Cisco's Easy Virtual Network (EVN) and Virtual Switching System (VSS) technologies. Network virtualization allows you to divide a physical network into multiple virtual networks whose data and control planes are logically distinct. This provides the efficient utilization, protection, resilience, and manageability required for Cloud environments or other scenarios where a single resource pool is shared by applications and services that need to operate in total isolation from one another. Easy Virtual Network simplifies the process of deploying VNs and can be expanded to 32 VNs per switch. EVN utilizes features of Multi-virtual routing and forwarding and adds additional technologies such as VNET Trunks and an easy way for duplicating replicating routes between virtual networks. VSS makes it possible to set up Catalyst 4500-E and Catalyst 4500-X Series platforms to create zero-downtime virtual networks with advanced traffic load balancing.
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Switches
Cisco's Supervisor Engine for for the Catalyst 4500-E modular switch has a built-in wireless network controller that supports Cisco's Unified Access solution for wired and wireless convergence. The Supervisor Engine 8-E is the first Cisco Catalyst supervisor engine to permit wired as well as wireless services on one platform powered by Cisco's IOS XE. Features include Cisco's FNF solution for traffic analytics encompassing both wired and wireless networks, TrustSec/SGT2 wired/wireless data security, consistent QoS for wired and wireless networks, and the expansion of Nonstop Forwarding with Stateful Switchover to cover wireless traffic for world-class availability.
Offered in chassis with from three to 10 slots, Cisco Catalyst 4500-E switches with Supervisor 8-E can support as many as 384 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, up to 192 1GE non-blocking fiber connections, 96 10-Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, and eight 10GE uplinks. Cisco's Supervisor Engine 8-E delivers as much as 928 Gbps of wired capacity for each system and up to 20 Gbps of wireless termination performance. 50 Wi-Fi APs and 2000 wireless clients can be handled per switch, and up to 250 access points and 4000 wireless clients can be managed in a multi-switch deployment without a separate wireless network controller.
Catalyst 4500-X Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are fixed-configuration 10GE aggregation switches that provide up to 800 Gbps of core switching performance per device. The Catalyst 4500-X supports as many as 32 10GE connections on the baseboard and eight additional 10GE ports on the expansion module for a maximum of up to 40 10GE ports. Eight 10-Gigabit Ethernet uplinks can be added via another module. In addition to offering zero-downtime performance and simple manageability, Cisco's VSS solution on Catalyst 4500-X switches provides increased system throughput of as much as 1.6 Tbps by activating all possible capacity between VSS-linked Catalyst 4500-X switches. Other features include FNF solution for application visibility, TrustSec protection, and fast, hardware-based IPv6 forwarding.
Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6500 Series and Cisco Catalyst 6800 switches are enterprise campus core platforms that share the proven DNA of the Cisco Catalyst 6500 family of products, which were introduced more than a dozen years ago and which have been continually improved ever since. Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series switches offer the same features and operation, and the modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL switch accepts the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor Engine 2T and the associated family of compatible line cards and service modules. This backwards compatibility and program of continual enhancement preserves your IT investment and permits you to upgrade your network backbone with minimal downtime or management team training.
Shared features of Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series and Catalyst 6800 modular switches that have Cisco's Supervisor Engine 2T include the Cisco ISE technology for convenient, centralized management to ensure unvarying policy throughout a distributed network, Virtual Switching System capability for maximum uptime through multi-level failover, and Cisco's Campus Locator/ID Separation Protocol to support client roaming and device mobility and to simplify network virtualization and migration to IPv6. Additional virtualization tools to partition specific client groups and support the unique security/compliance and QoS policy requirements of every group include L2/L3 VPN, complete Multiprotocol Label Switching, Easy Virtual Network, VPN Routing and Forwarding-aware technology for Network Address Translation NetFlow, IPv6 over IPv4 GRE Tunnels, and L2 extensions with VPLS. For converged wired and wireless networking, the Wireless Services Module 2 (WiSM2) for Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series modular switches supports 1000 APs and 15,000 wireless users.
Cisco Catalyst 6500-E Switches
The Cisco Catalyst 6500-E line of modular switches are intended for distribution and campus core networks that need world-class availability and high densities of 1 Gigabit Ethernet, 1 Gigabit Ethernet fiber, and/or 10 and 40 GE access ports. Available versions have three to 13 slots and work with a broad selection of modules. Integrated service modules support wireless, traffic analysis, and data protection. Only E-Series models of Cisco's extensive family of 6500 switches work with Cisco's Supervisor Engine 2T.
The value-priced Cisco Catalyst 6503-E switch has a 4 rack unit (4RU) form factor, includes 3 slots, and delivers as much as 180 Gbps of switching capacity on each slot. The Catalyst 6503-E switch can support up to 97 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, up to 99 Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, 34 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports, and 8 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports.
The top-of-the-line Catalyst 6513-E switch has a 19RU, 13-slot chassis and offers as much as 180 Gbps of capacity on each slot, with a system bandwidth as high as 4 Tbps. A Virtual Switching System configuration can handle up to 8 Tbps of capacity. The Catalyst 6513-E switch can support a maximum of 529 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, up to 534 1GE fiber ports, 180 10GE connections, and 44 40-Gigabit Ethernet connections.
Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6800 switches are campus backbone switches intended to provide optimal 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet services. The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X switch is a fixed-configuration, small form factor switch for high-density Ethernet intended for small or midsize campus cores. The 6880-X switch delivers up to 2 Tbps switching bandwidth and features four slots for plug-in port cards. The top port concentration on one chassis is 80 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or 10-Gigabit Ethernet access ports or up to 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet access ports. Configured with VSS, a two-chassis system can provide 4 Tbps switching throughput and handle as many as 158 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or 10GE ports or as many as 20 40GE connections.
The modular Catalyst 6807-XL switch has a 10 RU form factor chassis with 7 slots and supports existing Supervisor Engine 2T line cards and service modules. (Two slots are for the Supervisor Engine and five are for expansion modules.) The Catalyst 6807-XL switch can deliver as much as 880 Gbps of switching capacity on each slot and a total of 11.4 Tbps of full-duplex switching performance while providing up to 240 1 Gigabit Ethernet access ports or Gigabit Ethernet fiber ports, 80 10-Gigabit Ethernet connections or 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports. A two-chassis 6807-XL system with VSS can support 22.8 Tbps of switching throughput, 480 1 Gigabit Ethernet access ports or 1GE fiber connections, 160 10-Gigabit Ethernet access ports or 40 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports.
Legacy Catalyst Series Switches Still Supported by Progent
Progent's Cisco CCIE-certified consultants have extensive experience delivering online and on-premises support expertise for early-generation Catalyst switches which have reached End of Life (EOL). These outdated Catalyst switches often cost more to manage and maintain than current models, provide less capacity and functionality, and in some cases may subject organizations to regulatory and even liability issues. Progent's consultants can help your business to maintain and troubleshoot these older Cisco products and can in addition help you to plan and carry out non-disruptive upgrades to newer products within the Catalyst family or to solutions from Cisco's Nexus line of switches which take advantage of Catalyst technology. Legacy Cisco Catalyst switches supported by Progent include:
Catalyst Express 500 and 520 Switches
Cisco's Catalyst Express 500 line of managed Ethernet switches are intended for businesses with as many as 250 employees and deliver the dependability, security, extensibility, and feature set small and mid-sized companies require at an economical price. PoE capability makes it simple to add network appliances such as VoIP phones and IP cameras.
Versions of the Catalyst Express 500 switches support from 8 to 24 10/100/1000BASE-T Ethernet ports plus optional backup power with automatic switch-over for extra reliability. Interoperation with Cisco wireless access points helps businesses to set up a local wireless network quickly and effectively. The Cisco Catalyst Express 500 platform offers solid security against malicious attacks With the Cisco Self-Defending Network strategy and Clean Access solutions.
Cisco Catalyst 2940 Switch
Catalyst 2900 Series fixed-configuration, managed Ethernet switches provide fundamental workgroup networking for small to medium-size companies. These wire-rate desktop appliances offer Cisco IOS Software features for basic mixed-media traffic services at the network edge. The Cisco 2940 family of managed switches are small, stackable switches featuring eight Ethernet ports plus one built-in Fast or Gbit uplink. They can be installed away from the wiring closet in cramped locations such as on or under a worker's desk or in a conference room.
Cisco Catalyst 2960-S Series Switch
The Catalyst 2960-S Series are fixed-configuration switches intended for small companies and branches. Available models feature 24 or 48 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, four 1GE or two 10-GB Ethernet uplinks, and deliver switching capacity as high as 176 Gbps. Cisco's FlexStack technology permits as many as four 2960-S chassis to be grouped in a stack to perform like a single switching unit that provides 40 Gbps of stacking throughput and that cuts operational costs because of one-switch configuration. IPv6 First Hop Security technology protects against IPv6 address theft and other threats.
Cisco Catalyst 3560 Switches
Cisco’s Catalyst 3560 family is a selection of non-modular switches that includes IEEE 802.3af and Cisco Power over Ethernet (PoE) functionality in 10/100 Ethernet and 10/100/1000 Ethernet implementations. The Catalyst 3560 Series switch is an ideal Layer 2 switch for small enterprise LAN access or local-offices, combining both 10/100/1000 and PoE options for high efficiency while streamlining the installation of key applications including Voice over IP, Wi-Fi, video monitoring, and building management systems. IT managers can activate network-wide smart services such as QoS, rate management, access control lists, multicast administration, and fast IP routing with the simplicity of traditional network switching.
The Cisco Catalyst 3560 switch offers a robust set of features that allow for network scalability and enhanced resilience through IP routing as well as a complete suite of STP improvements designed to increase availability in an access Layer network. Enhancements to the conventional Spanning Tree Protocol, such as Per-VLAN Spanning Tree Plus (PVST+), and Uplink Fast, as well as innovations like Flex Links interfaces, improve network uptime. Per-VLAN Spanning Tree Plus allows for Data Link Layer load balancing on redundant connections to efficiently use the extra bandwidth inherent in a redundant architecture.
Efficient protocols including OPSF, EIGRP, Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), and Policy Based Routing improve system scale; Protocol Independent Multicast helps improve utilization of network resources; and Virtual Route Forwarding Lite (VRFLite) secures data.
Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series Switches
For mid-size organizations and corporate branch offices, Cisco's Catalyst 3750 switch eases deployment of converged applications and adapts to changing competitive needs by offering configuration versatility, support for converged network patterns, and automatic set up of smart system functions. In addition, the Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series switch is engineered for high-volume 1000 Ethernet deployments and includes a diverse range of switches that meet the access, distribution, and backbone-connectivity demands of small or mid-size systems.
Cisco's Catalyst 3750 Series switch has the IP Base or the Services image. The IP Base image capabilities include advanced quality of service, rate-management, access control lists (ACLs), and basic static and Routing Information Protocol routing support. The IP Services image offers a broader selection of enterprise-level functions, such as sophisticated hardware-based IP unicast and multicast routing.
Cisco StackWise technology is an architecture optimized for Gigabit Ethernet. This technology is designed to respond to installs, deletions, and relocations while providing consistent operation. Cisco StackWise technology unites up to nine individual switches into one functional unit, utilizing custom stack-interconnect cables and stacking software. The individual switches can be any mix of Cisco's Catalyst 3750 Series switches and the Cisco Catalyst 3750-E Series switches. The stack operates as a single switching appliance that is directed by a control switch, selected from among the member switches. The master switch automatically creates and updates all the switching and optional routing databases. A deployed stack can accept new devices or delete old switches with no service interruption.
How Progent Can Help Your Business with Cisco Catalyst Series Switches
Progent offers the remote or on-premises services of Cisco CCIE-certified network consultants who have extensive backgrounds delivering Catalyst switch technology support for small and medium sized businesses, branches, enterprise campuses, data centers, Cloud environments, and service providers. Progent's practice areas include Catalyst and Nexus lines of managed switches and with Cisco's IOS and NX-OS operating systems. Support services offered by Progent for Catalyst Series switches include proof-of-concept testing and validation, network analysis, topology design, migrations and project management, virtualization, wired and wireless convergence, network management, performance optimization, troubleshooting, disaster recovery and business continuity preparedness, and IT security testing and remediation.
Progent's Cisco-certified consultants have deep knowledge of industry standards and with proprietary Cisco technologies related to switching and routing including BGP, MPLS traffic engineering, PIM, VPNs, Spanning-Tree Protocol, VLANs, FabricPath, 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 crucial networking technologies including TCP/IP protocols, IPv4, IPv6, EIGRP, RIP, and Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP). Progent's CISSP-ISSAP certified information security and compliance consultants can show you how to develop a comprehensive security and compliance plan and deploy Catalyst switches so they offer maximum support for your security posture.
If you need the highest available density or extremely low latency switches for a world-class data center, Progent can assist you to evaluate, plan, and implement a transition to Cisco's Nexus family of switches. For information about Progent's support capabilities for Cisco's Nexus Series switches, see Cisco Nexus Switch consulting services. Progent can also help you to connect Catalyst core switches with Cisco Meraki distribution switches. (See Cisco Meraki switch integration consultants.)
To see additional details concerning Progent's consulting assistance for Cisco solutions, choose a topic:
In order to contact Progent about engineering expertise for Cisco technology, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.