The Catalyst family of modular and fixed managed switches offers speed and intelligence at the access, distribution, and backbone areas of converged IP voice, video, and high bandwidth data networks for organizations that range in size from small businesses and branches to global enterprises and SPs. Progent's Cisco-certified consultants offer online and on-premises expertise with Catalyst family switches to help you to design an efficient infrastructure that meets your unique business needs, set up proof-of-concept testing, deploy Catalyst switches, implement and validate a sensible security and compliance strategy, streamline system management and performance tracking, deliver repair and maintenance services, maximize switch performance, and configure Catalyst's fault-tolerant technology to achieve near-zero downtime,
Progent can help you to maintain and repair your legacy Catalyst switches or migrate seamlessly to up-to-date versions of Catalyst switches adhering to leading practices to make sure that you get the maximum business value from your investment in your IT infrastructure.
The demand for intelligent, high-performance switching is driven by a combination of relatively recent computing patterns whose overall impact is a cyber avalanche of data traffic:
- Cloud computing and an associated requirement for massive network virtualization
- The pervasiveness of always-connected mobile devices
- Data guzzling rich media applications
- Social media for business
- The popularity of Big Data in data analytics
Cloud computing is only financially feasible by utilizing virtualization technology. Virtualized infrastructures radically reduce expenses by permitting aggressively high resource utilization and demanding very little data center space and energy consumption. But this also means that comparatively limited resources must accommodate substantial volumes of data traffic. The BYOD revolution has caused a steep increase in the number of mobile clients that must be handled by business networks, and these clients run a great deal of bandwidth-intensive, rich media applications. Social business technologies are replacing email as the main enabler of collaboration and is generating an ever increasing thirst for bandwidth. Businesses who want to stay competitive are resorting to Big Data technology to search through enormous and disparate repositories of information, which as a result produces Big Network Traffic. These computing trends are fairly recent, and put together they cause a serious need for a new class of switches that offer significantly more capacity, intelligence, availability and manageability than previous platforms were built to deliver.
Cisco's latest lineup of Catalyst switches are ideal for the distribution and core layers layers of enterprise campus deployments where office workers must be provided for by offering predictable high speed, strict client access control, tight segmentation, application awareness, and wired/wireless convergence. Catalyst series switches are designed to meet the need for performance and control with features such as high-density 10G/40G/100G services, switching capacity of up to 11 Tbps per chassis and twice that for each switching system, a powerful collection of technologies such as Easy Virtual Network (EVN) to facilitate the creation of virtual networks, VSS technology for stateful failover with subsecond backup switch restoration and "five nines" (99.999%) availability, IPv6 support, AVC to maximize network utilization, and sophisticated QoS tools for HD video data control.
Cisco Has Developed Catalyst Switches for Organizations of All Sizes
Catalyst switches allow businesses of any size to build smart switching and routing services into their network architecture, creating an ecosystem that can meet current requirements, scale to accommodate future capacity demands, protect vital information, and differentiate and manage processes to enhance network productivity.
Catalyst 2960 Series Switches and 3560-CX Switches
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-CX is a fixed-port switch that is low-profile, fanless, power efficient, and allows a variety of mounting options. The device has eight 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports and two Gigabit Ethernet uplinks and optionally provides PoE+ power. Cisco's Catalyst 3560-CX is a fixed-port managed switch packaged in a compact, noiseless and energy-efficient unit that can be mounted virtually anywhere convenient. Versions are available with 8 or 12 1-GE ports or with 6 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports and two multigigabit ports. Up to four uplink ports are available, and Power over Ethernet is also available.
Cisco's Catalyst 2960-L line consists of value-priced fixed-configuration managed switches designed for small offices, retail venues, and other places where space is at a premium. Catalyst 2900-L low-profile appliances have eight to 48 Gigabit Ethernet ports and either two or four Small Form-Factor Pluggable uplink ports. Power over Ethernet support reduces clutter and fan-free design for 16- and 24-port versions eliminates noise. RJ-45 connectors handle 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T and 1000BASE-T SFP-ports.
Catalyst 2960-X and 2960-XR switches enhance the 2690-S family by delivering switching throughput of up to 216 Gbps and providing Cisco's FlexStack-Plus stacking technology via a hot-swappable module that can combine 8 Catalyst switches in a stack with 80 Gbps of stacking throughput. Catalyst 2900 Series switches also support NetFlow-Lite for conserving forwarding data for analysis. Cisco's Catalyst 2960-XR Series switch is capable of L3 dynamic routing, providing the simplicity of using one switch for Layer 2 and Layer 3 routing.
Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 Switches
Cisco Catalyst 3650 and Catalyst 3850 series switches are fixed-configuration, stackable access devices based on Cisco's IOS XE control software and incorporating full wireless network controller capability that lets you converge wired and wireless networks on a one device managed by a single OS. Cisco has versions with either 24 or 48 1Gb Ethernet ports with PoE plus, four 1-Gigabit or four 10-GB Ethernet uplink ports, and support for as many as nine switches per FlexStack stack. All models provide expandable Quality of Service, stateful switchover for high availability, software support for IPv4 and IPv6 routing, multicast routing, and advanced security.
Since wireless data traffic is present at the Catalyst 3000 Series switch, it is possible to spot and prioritize wireless traffic with Cisco's Flexible NetFlow (FNF) technology and advanced Quality of Service capabilities for an improved wireless user experience and faster problem isolation. Fast Ethernet switching supports the high-throughput called for by the new 802.11ac Wave 2 wireless specification using currently in-place cabling infrastructure. (For information about Progent's consulting and support services for Cisco's 802.11ac Aironet wireless products, and Meraki cloud-managed APs, refer to Configuration and Troubleshooting Support for Cisco Wireless Technology.)
The Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series switch offers stacking throughput of up to 160 Gbps and can control as many as 25 wireless access points and 1000 Wi-Fi users per switch. The Catalyst 3850 delivers stacking performance of 480 Gbps and supports as many as 50 Wi-Fi access points and 2000 wireless users on each switch or stack. Cisco Catalyst 3850 SFP Fiber Switches have 12 or 24 1G fiber ports at line rate, offering far reaching connections, advanced security, and a consistent wired/wireless user experience.
Catalyst 4500-E and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Catalyst 4500-E Series and and Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series switches are designed for access and distribution deployments where physical space for infrastructure equipment is limited. Powered by Cisco's IOS XE operating system, both the 4500-E and Catalyst 4500-X families simplify virtualization by supporting Cisco's Easy Virtual Network and Virtual Switching System (VSS) solutions. Network virtualization allows you to divide a hardware network into a number of virtual networks whose data and control planes are logically separate. This makes possible the efficient utilization, protection, recoverability, and ease of management required for Cloud computing or other scenarios where a common resource pool is shared by software and services that must operate in complete isolation from one another. Easy Virtual Network speeds up the process of creating VNs and can be expanded to 32 VNs per switch. Easy Virtual Network utilizes the capabilities of Multi-virtual routing and forwarding and adds new features such as VNET Trunks and a simple technique for duplicating replicating routes connecting virtual networks. VSS technology makes it possible to configure Catalyst 4500-E and Catalyst 4500-X Series switches to produce non-stop VNs with optimized traffic load balancing.
Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series Switches
Cisco's Supervisor Engine 8-E for the Catalyst 4500-E modular switch includes a built-in wireless controller that works with Cisco's Unified Access solution for wired/wireless convergence. this is the first Catalyst supervisor engine to enable wired plus wireless services on a single platform based on IOS XE software. Features include Cisco's FNF solution for traffic analytics across wired and wireless networks, Cisco TrustSec/SGT2 wired and wireless security, consistent Quality of Service for wired and wireless networks, plus the expansion of NSF/SSO to include Wi-Fi traffic for world-class high availability.
Available in chassis that have from three to 10 plug-in slots, Cisco Catalyst 4500-E switches with Supervisor 8-E can handle up to 384 1-Gigabit Ethernet access ports, 193 1GE fiber fiber connections, 96 10-Gigabit Ethernet fiber ports, and eight 10-Gigabit Ethernet uplink ports. The Catalyst 4500-E Supervisor Engine 8-E provides up to 928 Gbps of wired capacity per system and as much as 20 Gbps of wireless termination performance. 50 wireless APs and 2000 wireless clients can be supported on each chassis, and up to 250 wireless access points and 4000 wireless clients can be supported in a multi-switch deployment without a standalone wireless network controller.
Cisco Catalyst 4500-X Series Switches
Catalyst 4500-X switches are fixed-configuration 10GE aggregation platforms that provide up to 800 Gbps of core switching capacity per device. The Catalyst 4500-X can have as many as 32 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports on the unit's baseboard and eight additional 10-Gigabit Ethernet ports on the expansion module for a total of 40 10GE connections. Eight 10GE uplinks are available with a separate module. In addition to offering non-stop performance and simple manageability, Cisco's VSS solution on Catalyst 4500-X Series switches offers increased system performance of as much as 1.6 Tbps by activating all available capacity across VSS-linked Catalyst 4500-X Series switches. Other features include Cisco's Flexible NetFlow solution for capacity planning, Cisco TrustSec security, and wire-rate IPv6 forwarding.
Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series Switches
Catalyst 6500 and Catalyst 6800 switches are campus core platforms that share the proven technology of the Catalyst 6500 line of products, which first appeared more than a dozen years ago and which have been continually enhanced ever since. Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Catalyst 6800 Series switches provide identical features and operational consistency, and the modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL switch supports the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor Engine 2T and its extensive portfolio of line cards and service modules. This mutual compatibility and program of ongoing improvement preserves your IT expenditures and allows you to upgrade your network backbone with little downtime or IT team training.
Common features of Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 modular switches equipped with Cisco's Supervisor Engine 2T include the Cisco Identity Services Engine for simple, single-point administration to put in place consistent policy across a distributed environment, Virtual Switching System technology for maximum uptime via multi-level redundancy, and the Cisco Campus Locator/ID Separation Protocol to facilitate client roaming and device mobility and to simplify network virtualization and transition to IPv6. Additional virtual networking tools to partition distinct user groups and support the unique security/compliance and QoS policy needs of each group include L2/L3 VPN, complete MPLS, Easy Virtual Network, VRF-aware technology for Network Address Translation NetFlow, IPv6 over IPv4 GRE Tunnels, and L2 geographic extensions with virtual private LAN services. For unified wired and wireless networking, the Wireless Services Module 2 for Cisco Catalyst 6500 and Cisco Catalyst 6800 modular switches supports 1000 APs and 15,000 wireless clients.
Cisco Catalyst 6500-E Series Switches
The Cisco Catalyst 6500-E line of modular switches are intended for distribution and campus backbone networks that need world-class uptime and high densities of 10/100/1000 Ethernet, 1 GE fiber, and/or 10 and 40 Gigabit Ethernet ports. Models come with three to 13 slots and work with a wide range of interface modules. Integrated service modules enable wireless, traffic analysis, and security. Only E-Series versions of Cisco's broad family of Catalyst 6500 switches work with the Supervisor Engine 2T.
The value-priced Cisco Catalyst 6503-E has a 4 rack unit form factor, holds 3 slots, and offers 180 Gbps of switching throughput per slot. The Catalyst 6503-E can support up to 97 1-Gigabit Ethernet connections, up to 99 Gigabit Ethernet fiber access ports, up to 34 10GE ports, and 8 40GE access ports.
The top-of-the-line Catalyst 6513-E has a 19RU, 13-slot chassis and offers 180 Gbps of capacity per slot, providing a system capacity as high as 4 Tbps. A Virtual Switching System configuration can support 8 Tbps of capacity. The Catalyst 6513-E Series switch supports up to 529 10/100/1000 Ethernet connections, up to 534 1GE fiber ports, 180 10-Gigabit Ethernet access ports, and up to 44 40-Gigabit Ethernet connections.
Catalyst 6800 Switches
Catalyst 6800 switches are campus backbone switches designed to deliver optimal 10/40/100 GE services. The Catalyst 6880-X switch is a fixed, compact platform for high-density Ethernet intended for small or midsize enterprise campus backbones. The Catalyst 6880-X delivers up to 2 Tbps capacity and includes four slots for plug-in port cards. The maximum port concentration per chassis is 80 1 Gigabit Ethernet connections or 10GE access ports or as many as 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports. Configured with Cisco's Virtual Switching System, a two-chassis system can provide 4 Tbps switching capacity and handle as many as 158 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports or 10GE ports or as many as 20 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports.
The modular Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL switch has a 10 RU form factor that has 7 slots and accepts 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 offers as much as 880 Gbps of switching capacity on each slot and 11.4 Tbps of full-duplex switching throughput while supporting up to 240 1 Gigabit Ethernet access ports or 1GE fiber ports, 80 10GE connections or up to 20 40GE access ports. an 6807-XL system configured with Cisco's Virtual Switching System can support 22.8 Tbps of switching throughput, 480 1 Gigabit Ethernet ports or Gigabit Ethernet fiber ports, 160 10GE access ports or 40 40GE connections.
Legacy Catalyst Series Switches Still Supported by Progent
Progent's Cisco CCIE-certified consultants have extensive backgrounds delivering online and onsite support expertise for legacy Catalyst switches for which Cisco has announced End of Life or End of Support. These outdated Catalyst switches typically are more expensive to manage and support than contemporary products, provide less capacity and fewer features, and in many situations can subject organizations to compliance and liability risks. Progent are available to assist you to support and troubleshoot these older switches and can also help you to design and implement non-disruptive migrations to newer products within the Catalyst family or to solutions from Cisco's Nexus line of network switches which take advantage of Catalyst technology. Legacy Cisco Catalyst models for which Progent offers support 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 workers and provide the dependability, protection, extensibility, and features small companies need at an economical price. PoE support makes it simple to install network devices like wireless access points and closed-circuit cameras.
Versions of the Catalyst Express 500 switches offer from 8 to 24 10/100/1000BASE-T Ethernet ports plus optional backup power supplies with auto fail-over for additional dependability. Interoperation with Cisco wireless access points allows organizations to build a local wireless environment rapidly and easily. The Catalyst Express 500 and 520 family provides solid security against malicious attacks With the Cisco Self-Defending Network technology and Cisco Clean Access solutions.
Catalyst 2940 Switch
Cisco Catalyst 2900 fixed-configuration, managed 10/100 switches offer fundamental small-group connectivity for small to medium-sized businesses. These wire-speed desktop appliances deliver Cisco IOS Software functions for basic mixed-media traffic control at the edge of the network. The Cisco 2940 family of switches are compact, stackable devices featuring 8 Ethernet connections and a single built-in Fast Ethernet or Gigabit Ethernet uplink. The enclosures can be installed away from the wiring cabinet in cramped areas like on or under a worker's desk or in a conference room.
Cisco Catalyst 2960-S Switch
The Catalyst 2960-S Series are fixed-configuration switches designed for small businesses and branches. Current models incorporate either 24 or 48 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports, four 1-Gigabit or two 10-GB Ethernet uplink ports, and provide throughput of 176 Gbps. Cisco's FlexStack technology permits four Catalyst 2960-S chassis to be grouped in a FlexStack stack to perform as a single switching unit that offers 40 Gbps of stacking bandwidth and that reduces operational expense because of one-switch setup. IPv6 FHS capability guards against IPv6 address interception and other threats.
Cisco Catalyst 3560 Family Switches
The Catalyst 3560 family is a selection of fixed-configuration switches that includes IEEE 802.3af and Cisco PoE functionality in 10/100 Ethernet and 10/100/1000 Ethernet configurations. The Catalyst 3560 Series switch is an ideal access-layer switch for small enterprise LAN access or satellite-office environments, offering both Gigabit and Power over Ethernet options for high efficiency while facilitating the installation of vital applications including VoIP, wireless access, video surveillance, and remote video kiosks. IT managers can activate comprehensive smart features including QoS, rate limiting, ACLs, multicast administration, and high-performance IP routing with the ease of conventional network switching.
The Catalyst 3560 Series has a powerful set of capabilities that permit network expandability and higher availability via IP routing as well as a full suite of STP improvements aimed to increase throughput in a Layer 2 LAN. Improvements to the conventional Spanning Tree Protocol, including PVST+, Uplink Fast, and Port Fast, combined with innovations such as Flex Links interfaces, contribute to network efficiency. Per-VLAN Spanning Tree Plus (PVST+) supports Layer 2 load balancing on backup links to efficiently use the additional bandwidth associated with a redundant architecture.
Important routing protocols such as Open Shortest Path First (OPSF), Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol, Border Gateway Protocol, and Policy Based Routing improve system capacity; Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM) increases resource utilization; and Virtual Route Forwarding Lite secures network traffic.
Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series Switches
For midsized organizations and corporate branch offices, the Cisco Catalyst 3750 switch simplifies integration of converged technologies and accommodates evolving business needs by providing configuration versatility, support for unified network patterns, and management-free set up of intelligent network services. Also, the Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series switch is engineered for high-density Gigabit Ethernet deployments and incorporates a diverse range of switches that meet the connectivity, aggregation, and backbone-connectivity demands of small or mid-size networks.
The Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series has the IP Base or the Services image. The IP Base image features include advanced quality of service (QoS), rate-management, access control lists, and basic static and Routing Information Protocol (RIP) routing capability. The IP Services image provides a richer selection of high-end functions, such as sophisticated built-in IP unicast/multicast routing.
Cisco StackWise technology is an architecture designed for Gigabit Ethernet. StackWise is intended to react to installs, deletions, and relocations while maintaining predictable performance. Cisco StackWise combines as many as 9 separate switches into a single functional device, using special stack-interconnect cables and utilities. Any of the switches can be any mix of the Catalyst 3750 Series and the 3750-E switches. The stack behaves as an individual switching appliance that is managed by a master switch, chosen from one of the stack of switches. The control switch automatically builds and updates all the switching and optional routing tables. A deployed stack can accept new devices or remove existing devices with no service discontinuity.
How Progent Can Help Your Business with Cisco Catalyst Switches
Progent offers the online or on-premises services of CCIE-certified consultants who have broad backgrounds providing Catalyst switch support for small and midsize organizations, branches, enterprises, data centers, Cloud networks, and service providers. Progent's practice areas include Catalyst and Nexus families of managed switches and with Cisco's IOS and NX-OS control software. Support services available from Progent's experts for Catalyst Series switches include pilot testing, system analysis, network architecture design, migrations and project management, network virtualization, wired and wireless convergence, network management, performance optimization, troubleshooting, business continuity preparedness, and IT security assessment and verification.
Progent has broad expertise with industry standards as well as with proprietary Cisco technologies associated with switching and routing including BGP, MPLS, Protocol Independent Multicast, VPNs, Spanning-Tree Protocol, virtual LANs, Cisco FabricPath, Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), OTV, Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol, Open Shortest Path First (OSPF), Virtual Switching System (VSS), and LISP. Progent's network consultants also offer deep knowledge of key technologies such as TCP/IP, IPv4/IPv6, EIGRP, Routing Information Protocol (RIP), and Internet Group Management Protocol. Progent's CISSP-ISSAP certified data security consultants can show you how to create an enterprise-wide security strategy and deploy Catalyst switches so they provide optimal enforcement to your network security posture.
In case you need the highest available density or extremely low latency Cisco switches for a world-class data center, Progent can help your organization to evaluate, plan, and implement a migration to Nexus family of switches. For information about Progent's support services for Cisco's Nexus switches, see Cisco Nexus Switch consulting and support services. Progent can also assist you to connect Catalyst core switches with Cisco Meraki distribution switches. (See Cisco Meraki switch integration consultants.)
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