Cisco's Catalyst line of modular and fixed managed switches provides speed and intelligence at the access, distribution, and backbone areas of converged IP voice, HD video, and high bandwidth data networks for businesses that range in size from small businesses and branches to multi-campus enterprises and SPs. Progent's Cisco-certified CCIE consultants can provide online and on-premises support for Catalyst switches to assist your organization to plan an efficient infrastructure that meets your unique business requirements, configure pilot testing, install Catalyst switches, establish and verify a sound security plan, automate network management and performance tracking, deliver troubleshooting and maintenance services, optimize switch performance, and configure Catalyst's fault-tolerant solutions for non-stop operation, Progent can assist you to manage and repair your older Catalyst switches or migrate efficiently to the latest versions of Catalyst switches following leading practices to ensure that you receive the highest business value from your investment in your IT infrastructure.

The need for smart, fast switching is the result 0f a confluence of fairly new networking trends whose net impact is a virtual tsunami of data traffic:

  • Cloud computing and a consequent reliance on intensive network virtualization
  • The proliferation of always-connected mobile devices
  • Bandwidth-intensive rich media applications
  • Social media for business
  • The rise of Big Data in analytics

Private, public and hybrid clouds are only operationally realistic by utilizing network virtualization. Virtualized infrastructures slash expenses by permitting very high resource utilization and demanding minimal data center space and energy use. But this also requires that relatively sparse resources must accommodate large volumes of data. The Bring-Your-Own-Device revolution has created a dramatic rise in the amount of mobile users that must be handled by business networks, and these clients run a great deal of data-intensive, rich media applications. Social business technologies are replacing email as the primary driver for workforce collaboration and is producing a growing demand for data. Businesses who are trying to stay competitive are resorting to Big Data techniques to mine enormous and disparate silos of corporate data, which in turn generates Big Network Traffic. All of these computing trends are fairly recent, and put together they create a serious need for an advanced generation of switches that offer significantly higher capacity, control, availability and ease of management than previous solutions were built to provide.

Cisco's latest portfolio of Catalyst switches are ideal for the distribution and core layers layers of campus deployments where mobile and stationary workers must be supported with dependable high throughput, secure client access control, careful segmentation, application intelligence, and wired and wireless convergence. Cisco's Catalyst switches are designed to meet the demand for speed and control with capabilities such as high-port-count 10G/40G/100G support, switching capacity of up to 11 Tbps for each chassis and double that for each system, an extensive collection of technologies including Easy Virtual Network to facilitate the deployment of VLANs, Virtual Switching System (VSS) technology for stateful interchassis failover with instant virtual switch restoration and 99.999% availability, IPv4 and IPv6 support, AVC to optimize system resource usage, and advanced QoS tools for HD video data prioritization.

Cisco Catalyst Switches Consultants

Cisco Offers Catalyst Switching Solutions for Businesses of All Sizes

Cisco Catalyst switches allow organizations of any size to build smart switching features into their network architecture, creating an environment that can handle current requirements, scale to support future growth, guard vital information, and differentiate and manage processes to enhance network operations.

Catalyst 2960 Series Switches and Catalyst 3560-CX Switches
Cisco Catalyst 2900 Series Switches Integration and TroubleshootingCisco's Catalyst 2960-CX is a fixed-port managed switch that is compact, fanless, power efficient, and allows flexible mounting options. The switch incorporates eight 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports and two Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports and optionally provides Power over Ethernet. Cisco's Catalyst 3560-CX is a fixed-configuration switch packaged in a compact, quiet and low-power unit that can be placed almost anywhere outside a wiring closet. Models are offered with 8 or 12 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or with 6 1-GE ports plus two multigigabit ports. Two or four uplink ports are available, and Power over Ethernet (PoE) is also an option.

Cisco Catalyst 2900-L Switches ConsultantsCisco's Catalyst 2960-L family consists of value-priced fixed-configuration switches targeted for branch offices, retail venues, and other places where space is at a premium. These low-profile appliances include 8 to 48 GE ports and either 2 or 4 SFP uplink ports. PoE support saves space and fanless operation for most versions does away with noise. RJ-45 interfaces accommodate 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T and 1000BASE-T SFP-ports.

Cisco Catalyst 2960-X and Catalyst 2960-XR Series switches enhance the 2690-S line of switches by offering switching performance of up to 216 Gbps and supporting Cisco's FlexStack-Plus stacking technology by means of a live-swappable plug-in that allows 8 Catalyst switches in a stack with 80 Gbps of stacking performance. Catalyst 2900 family switches also work with NetFlow-Lite for flow-based traffic monitoring. Cisco's Catalyst 2960-XR Series switch features L3 dynamic routing, providing the convenience of having a single switch for L2 and L3 routing.

Cisco Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 Switches
Catalyst 3650 Switch and Catalyst 3850 Series Switches Planning and Support ServicesCatalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 switches are fixed-configuration, stackable access switches powered by Cisco's IOS XE operating system and incorporating full wireless controller functionality that allows you to control wired and wireless infrastructure on a single device managed by one operating system. Cisco offers models with either 24 or 48 built-in 1Gb Ethernet ports with Power over Ethernet plus (PoE+), four 1-Gigabit or four 10-Gigabit uplinks, and capacity for as many as nine Catalyst switches in a stack. All models provide expandable QoS, fast switchover for high uptime, software support for IPv4/IPv6 routing, multicast, and advanced security.

Since wireless data traffic is present at the Catalyst 3000 family switch, administrators can identify and prioritize wireless traffic using Cisco's FNF solution and sophisticated Quality of Service capabilities for a better wireless user environment and faster problem isolation. Fast Ethernet switching can handle the high-bandwidth defined by the latest 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi standard using existing cabling solutions. (For information about Progent's consulting and support services for Cisco's 802.11ac Wi-Fi products, and Cisco's Meraki cloud-managed access points, visit Configuration and Troubleshooting Consulting Services for Cisco Wireless Products.)

The Catalyst 3650 switch delivers stacking bandwidth of 160 Gbps and can control as many as 25 Wi-Fi APs and 1000 Wi-Fi clients on each stack. The Cisco Catalyst 3850 offers stacking bandwidth of 480 Gbps and supports up to 50 Wi-Fi APs and 2000 Wi-Fi clients per switch. Catalyst 3850 SFP Fiber Switches have 12 or 24 1G fiber connections at line rate on every port, providing far reaching connections, enhanced security, and a consistent wired and wireless experience.

Catalyst 4500-E Series and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Catalyst 4500-E Series and and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are intended for campus access and distribution environments where space for networking equipment is at a premium. Running Cisco's IOS XE control software, the 4500-E and 4500-X product lines facilitate network virtualization thanks to Cisco's Easy Virtual Network and Virtual Switching System (VSS) solutions. Network virtualization makes it possible to divide a physical network into a number of virtual networks (VNs) whose data planes and control planes are logically segregated. This makes possible the efficient utilization, security and compliance, recoverability, and manageability required for Cloud environments or other situations where a common resource pool must be used by software and services that need to run in total isolation from each other. Easy Virtual Network streamlines the process of deploying virtual networks and scales to 32 VNs per switch. EVN utilizes the capabilities of Multi-virtual routing and forwarding and includes new features including VNET Tags and an easy way for duplicating replicating routes connecting VNs. VSS technology makes it easy to configure Catalyst 4500-E and 4500-X Series platforms to produce non-stop VNs with optimized traffic load balancing.

Catalyst 4500E Series Switches
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Family Switches Consulting FirmCisco's Supervisor Engine for for the Catalyst 4500-E switch has a built-in wireless controller that supports Cisco's Unified Access solution for wired and wireless convergence. The Supervisor Engine 8-E is the first Catalyst supervisor to enable wired plus wireless services on a single platform powered by IOS XE. Features included are Cisco's Flexible NetFlow solution for capacity planning across wired and Wi-Fi networks, Cisco TrustSec/SGT2 wired and wireless security, predictable QoS for wired and Wi-Fi clients, plus the extension of Nonstop Forwarding with Stateful Switchover (NSF/SSO) to cover wireless traffic for world-class availability.

Offered in chassis with from three to 10 slots, Cisco Catalyst 4500-E Series switches with Supervisor 8-E can support as many as 384 10/100/1000 Ethernet access ports, 193 1GE fiber fiber ports, 96 10-Gigabit Ethernet fiber ports, and eight 10-Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports. The Catalyst 4500-E Supervisor Engine 8-E delivers as much as 928 Gbps of wired capacity per system and as much as 20 Gbps of wireless termination performance. 50 wireless access points and 2000 wireless users can be handled on each switch, and 250 wireless access points and 4000 wireless users are managed in a two-switch installation without requiring a standalone wireless controller.

Catalyst 4500-X Switches
Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Family Switches ConsultantsCisco's Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are fixed-configuration 10GE aggregation switches that provide 800 Gbps of core switching capacity per device. The Catalyst 4500-X switch supports as many as 32 10-Gigabit Ethernet connections on the unit's baseboard and eight extra 10GE ports on the expansion module for a total of up to 40 non-blocking 10GE connections. Eight 10-Gigabit Ethernet uplinks are also available via a separate module. In addition to providing non-stop performance and simple manageability, Cisco's VSS solution on Catalyst 4500-X Series switches offers higher system throughput of up to 1.6 Tbps by enabling all available capacity across redundant Catalyst 4500-X Series switches. Other advanced features include Cisco's FNF solution for capacity planning, TrustSec protection, and wire-rate IPv6 forwarding.

Catalyst 6500 and Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6500 Series and Catalyst 6800 switches are campus backbone platforms that share the proven DNA of the Cisco Catalyst 6500 family of switches, which first appeared more than a dozen years ago and which have been steadily improved since then. Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 switches offer identical general features and operation, and the modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL supports the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor Engine 2T and the associated portfolio of line cards and modules. This mutual compatibility and program of ongoing enhancement protects your IT expenditures and enables you to upgrade your network with little service interruption or management staff training.

Shared features of Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series modular switches equipped with Cisco's Supervisor Engine 2T include Cisco's Identity Services Engine (ISE) for simple, centralized administration to put in place unvarying policy across a distributed network, VSS Quad Sup SSO (VS4O) capability for 99.999% uptime via multi-level redundancy, and Cisco's Campus Locator/ID Separation Protocol to support client roaming and mobility and to streamline virtualization and transition to IPv6. Other virtualization features to partition distinct client groups and serve the unique security and Quality of Service policy requirements of each group include L2/L3 VPN, full Multiprotocol Label Switching , Easy Virtual Network (EVN), VPN Routing and Forwarding-aware technology for Network Address Translation NetFlow, GRE for v4/v6, and Layer 2 extensions with VPLS. For converged wired and wireless environments, the WiSM2 controller Catalyst 6500 and Catalyst 6800 modular switches includes support for as many as 1000 wireless access points and 15,000 wireless users.

Catalyst 6500-E Switches
Catalyst 6500 Family Switches Consulting FirmThe Catalyst 6500-E line of modular switches are intended for aggregation and campus core environments that need world-class availability and high concentrations of 1 Gigabit Ethernet, 1 GE fiber, or 10 and 40 Gigabit Ethernet access ports. Models include three to 13 expansion slots and accept a broad selection of interface modules. Integrated service modules enable wireless management, network analysis, and data protection. Only E-Series models of Cisco's extensive line of Catalyst 6500 switches work with the Supervisor Engine 2T.

The entry-level Cisco Catalyst 6503-E has a 4 rack unit (4RU) chassis, includes 3 slots, and delivers up to 180 Gbps of switching capacity per slot. The Cisco Catalyst 6503-E switch can support 97 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, up to 99 1GE fiber ports, 34 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports, and up to 8 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports.

The top-of-the-line Cisco Catalyst 6513-E has a 19RU, 13-slot form factor and offers up to 180 Gbps of throughput per slot, with a system bandwidth as high as 4 Tbps. A VSS configured system can handle 8 Tbps of bandwidth. The Cisco Catalyst 6513-E Series switch can support a maximum of 529 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections, up to 534 Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, 180 10GE access ports, and 44 40-Gigabit Ethernet connections.

Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6800 Series Switches Consulting FirmCisco's Catalyst 6800 Series switches are programmable core switches intended to provide optimal 10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet services. The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X switch is a fixed, small form factor device for high-density Ethernet designed for small or midsize campus backbones. The 6880-X switch supports up to 2 Tbps throughput and has four slots for port cards. The maximum port concentration per chassis is 80 10/100/1000 Ethernet access ports or 10GE connections or up to 20 40GE ports. Configured with VSS, a two-chassis system can deliver 4 Tbps throughput and handle as many as 158 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections or 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports or as many as 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports.

The modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL switch comes in a 10-rack-unit form factor that has 7 slots and accepts standard Supervisor Engine 2T cards and modules. (Two of the slots are reserved for the Supervisor Engine and five are for modules.) The Catalyst 6807-XL switch can deliver up to 880 Gbps of switching performance on each slot and a total of 11.4 Tbps of full-duplex switching bandwidth while providing up to 240 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or Gigabit Ethernet fiber connections, up to 80 10GE ports or 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports. an 6807-XL system configured with Cisco's Virtual Switching System can support 22.8 Tbps of switching capacity, 480 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or 1GE fiber ports, 160 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports or 40 40GE ports.

End-of-Life Catalyst Series Switches Supported by Progent
Progent's Cisco CCIE-certified consultants have broad experience delivering remote and onsite support expertise for legacy Catalyst Series switches for which Cisco has announced End of Life (EOL). These outdated Catalyst switches often cost more to manage and support than current switches, provide less performance and functionality, and for many situations may expose organizations to regulatory compliance and even liability issues. Progent's consultants can help you to support and repair these legacy Cisco products and can also assist you to design and implement non-disruptive upgrades to newer models from the Catalyst line or to devices from Cisco's Nexus portfolio of switches which take advantage of Catalyst technology. Older Cisco Catalyst models supported by Progent include:

Cisco Catalyst Express 500 and 520 Series Switches
Cisco Catalyst Express 500 and 520 Series Switches SupportThe Catalyst Express 500 and 520 line of managed Ethernet switches are designed for businesses with up to 250 employees and deliver the reliability, security, expandability, and feature set small and mid-sized companies need at an economical cost. Power over Ethernet capability makes it simple to install network appliances like wireless access points and closed-circuit TV cameras.

Versions of the Cisco Catalyst Express 500 managed switches support from 8 to 24 10/100/1000BASE-T Ethernet ports plus optional backup power with auto switch-over for additional reliability. Interoperation with Cisco wireless access points helps businesses to build a local wireless network quickly and easily. The Catalyst Express 500 and 520 family provides strong security against malicious attacks thanks to the Cisco Self-Defending Network strategy and Cisco Clean Access agents.

Catalyst 2940 Switch
Cisco Catalyst 2900 Series Switches Consulting FirmCatalyst 2900 non-modular, managed Ethernet switches offer fundamental workgroup networking for small to medium-sized businesses. These wire-speed desktop appliances deliver IOS Software features for simple data, video, and voice services at the network edge. The Cisco Catalyst 2940 Series managed switches are small, stackable devices featuring 8 Ethernet ports and a single built-in Fast or Gbit uplink. They can be installed outside the wiring closet in cramped locations like on or under a user's desk or in a conference room.

Catalyst 2960-S Switch
The Catalyst 2960-S Series are fixed switches designed for small companies and branch offices. Available versions incorporate 24 or 48 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, four 1GE or two 10GE uplinks, and deliver throughput of 176 Gbps. Cisco's FlexStack feature permits as many as four 2960-S switches to be combined in a stack to act as a single switching unit that provides 40 Gbps of stacking performance and that cuts operational expense with single-switch setup. Cisco's IPv6 FHS capability protects networks against IPv6 address theft and malicious attacks.

Cisco Catalyst 3560 Series Switches
Cisco 3560 Family Switches HelpCiscoís Catalyst 3560 family is a selection of fixed-configuration switches that features IEEE 802.3af and Cisco Power over Ethernet functionality in Fast Ethernet and 10/100/1000 Ethernet configurations. The Catalyst 3560 switch is a proven Layer 2 switch for small enterprise network connectivity or branch-office environments, offering both Gigabit and PoE configurations for high productivity while streamlining the installation of vital technology such a IP telephony, Wi-Fi, video monitoring, and remote video kiosks. Customers can activate comprehensive intelligent features such as QoS, rate management, access control lists, multicast administration, and broadband IP routing while maintaining the ease of conventional network switching.

The Cisco Catalyst 3560 family switch is equipped with a robust set of capabilities that permit network expandability and enhanced resilience via IP routing as well as a full complement of Spanning Tree Protocol enhancements aimed to maximize availability in a Layer 2 network. Enhancements to the conventional STP Protocol, such as Per-VLAN Spanning Tree Plus, and Port Fast, combined with enhancements like Flex Links, improve network efficiency. PVST+ allows for Layer 2 traffic balancing on backup connections to exploit the additional capacity associated with a redundant design.

Important routing mechanisms including OPSF, Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol (EIGRP), BGP, and Policy Based Routing increase system capacity; Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM) improves the efficiency of system resource use; and Virtual Route Forwarding Lite (VRFLite) secures data.

Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series Switches
Cisco 3750 Family Switches ConsultantsFor mid-size businesses and corporate branches, Cisco's Catalyst 3750 switch simplifies integration of converged technologies and adapts to changing competitive environments by providing setup flexibility, ability to manage unified network traffic, and management-free set up of smart network services. Also, Cisco's Catalyst 3750 switch is designed for high-density Gigabit environments and includes a wide range of switches that address the connectivity, distribution, and backbone-interface demands of small or midsized deployments.

The Cisco Catalyst 3750 switch has either the IP Base image or the Services image. The IP Base image features include advanced QoS, rate-limiting, access control lists (ACLs), and simple static and RIP routing capability. The IP Services image offers a richer set of high-end functions, such as advanced built-in IP unicast and multicast routing.

Cisco StackWise technology is an architecture designed for Gigabit interfaces. StackWise is intended to react to additions, deletions, and relocations while maintaining predictable operation. StackWise technology unites as many as 9 separate switches into one logical unit, using custom stack-interface cables and stacking software. The individual switches can be any mix of the Catalyst 3750 Series and the Cisco Catalyst 3750-E Series. The stack operates as a single switching device that is managed by a control switch, elected from among the stack of switches. The control switch intelligently creates and updates all the switching and user-selected routing tables. A working stack can accommodate new members or remove existing members without service discontinuity.

How Progent Can Assist You with Cisco Catalyst Series Switches
Progent can provide the remote or onsite support services of CCIE-certified network consultants who have broad backgrounds delivering Catalyst switch solutions for small and medium sized businesses, branches, campuses, data centers, Cloud environments, and service providers. Progent's skills include Catalyst and Nexus lines of smart switches and Cisco's IOS, IOS-XR and NX-OS operating systems. Support services available from Progent for Catalyst switches include pilot testing and validation, network analysis and monitoring, topology design, migrations and project management, virtualization, wired/wireless convergence, network management, performance optimization, problem mitigation, disaster recovery and business continuity planning, and information security and compliance testing and validation.

Progent's Cisco-certified consultants have broad knowledge of open standards and with Cisco-owned protocols and technologies related to switching and routing such as BGP, MPLS traffic engineering, Protocol Independent Multicast, VPNs, ISIS, virtual LANs, Cisco FabricPath, VPC, OTV, Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol, OSPF, Virtual Switching System (VSS), and LISP. Progent's network experts also have familiarity with important networking technologies including TCP/IP, IPv4, IPv6, Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol, Routing Information Protocol, and Internet Group Management Protocol. Progent's CISSP-ISSAP certified data security consultants can assist you to create a comprehensive security and compliance plan and implement Cisco Catalyst switches so they offer maximum enforcement to 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 assist your organization to evaluate, plan, and carry out a migration to Nexus switches. To learn about Progent's consulting and support services for Cisco's Nexus switches, see Cisco Nexus Switch configuration and support services. Progent can also help you to connect Catalyst data center switches with Meraki distribution switches. (See Cisco Meraki switch integration consultants.)

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If you wish to contact Progent about professional assistance for Cisco products, phone 1-800-993-9400 or go to Contact Progent.