Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL Modular Switch Review

In the last article, we talked about how to select a right Cisco switch for Campus or branch. If you want to select a right Cisco Campus switch, there are some simple questions you should pay attention to. For example, the purpose of the new switch, access or backbone; your connectivity needs, 1/10/40/100 Gb or 1/10 Gb; type you prefer, modular or standalone. In this article, we will introduce a full-featured modular campus backbone switches, the Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL. It is optimized for 1/10/40/100 Gigabit Ethernet services with advanced security, network segmentation, MPLS, network analytics, and integrated wireless.

We know that network traffic has grown exponentially over the last several years, and this trend is expected to continue into the foreseeable future. By 2016, there will be 19 billion networked devices, up from 10 billion in 2011. Business IP traffic is expected to reach 13.1 exabytes per month in 2016. Networks must be capable of scaling well beyond the needs of today to deal with the traffic of tomorrow while at the same time providing investment protection.

The Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis is the “modular” aspect of the Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series family of multilayer switching products.Compared to Cisco Catalyst 6500-E baseline switch (Supervisor 2T), Cisco 6807-XL switch has some bright features: Up to 880 Gb per slot; 11.4 Tbps switching; Service modules.

The Catalyst 6807-XL chassis with the Cisco 6500 Series Supervisor Engine 2T supports the Cisco Catalyst 6500 Cisco IOS Software operating system, the same operating system used on the Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series Switches.

  • Current (e.g. 15.1SY) Cisco IOSSoftware release
  • Future (e.g. 16.0SY) Cisco IOS Software releases

The Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL is a 7-slot modular chassis based on the Cisco Catalyst 6500.

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL Chassis

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL Chassis

Mechanical View of Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL

Mechanical View of Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL

The Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL provides up to eight channels to each module slot. Each module slot has four channels connected to each supervisor-engine slot (x2).

Note: Each “channel” is further comprised of eight parallel “SerDes” lanes, which are aggregated together to form a single logical fabric channel.

 Channel Allocation of Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL

Channel Allocation of Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL

For comparison, the Cisco Catalyst 6500-E Series chassis provides up to four channels to each slot, where each module slot has two channels connected to each supervisor-engine slot.

Thus, the new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL provides double the number of available channels.

Supervisor-Engine Modules

You can simply remove your current Supervisor Engine 2T module from a Cisco Catalyst 6500-E Series chassis and then insert it into a new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis. The same Supervisor Engine 2T will provide (at least) the same level of performance, and can even support new levels of performance.

Supported Supervisor-Engine Modules

PID Description Support
Older Supervisor Engines
WS-SUP720 Supervisor Engine 720 (PFC3B and 3B-XL) No
VS-S720-10G Supervisor Engine 720 (PFC3C and 3C-XL) No
Current Supervisor Engines
VS-S2T-10G Supervisor Engine 2T (PFC4) Yes
VS-S2T-10G-XL Supervisor Engine 2T (PFC4-XL) Yes

Note: You will recall that the new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis provides eight fabric channels per slot (four to each supervisor engine), whereas the Cisco Catalyst 6500-E provides only four channels (two to each supervisor engine).

Supervisor Engine 2T Support

An existing Supervisor Engine 2T module may or may not provide any increased performance.

Without any change to the hardware itself (deployment does require new software and firmware), your same Supervisor Engine 2T module can now take advantage of the four available (per-slot) channels, as well as support for new clock frequencies (up to 7.5 GHz) and line encoding (for example, 24/26b) schemes.

Therefore, each Supervisor Engine 2T module in a Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL can support up to 220 Gbps per slot.

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL with Supervisor Engine 2T

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL with Supervisor Engine 2T

However, individual LAN module performance depends on the ASICs present in each generation.

In other words, current LAN modules support the same performance as in a Cisco Catalyst 6500-E chassis. Furthermore, the Supervisor Engine 2T performance benefits noted previously apply only to next-generation LAN modules.

LAN Modules & Service Modules

You can simply remove your current LAN modules or Service Modules from a Cisco Catalyst 6500-E chassis (with Supervisor Engine2T), and then insert them into a new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis. The same LAN modules or Service Modules will provide (at least) the same level of performance, and they must interoperate with any new LAN modules or new Service Modules.

 LAN Module Support

PID Description Support
Older Modules
WS-X6748-GE-TX 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G RJ45 (CFC or DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6748-SFP 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G SFP (CFC or DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6724-SFP 40G Fabric 24-Port 1G SFP (CFC or DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6748-GE-TX 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G RJ45 (CFC or DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6704-10G 40G Fabric 4-Port 10G X1 (CFC or DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6716-10G 40G Fabric 16-Port 10G X2 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6716-10T 40G Fabric 16-Port 10G RJ45 (DFC4/XL) Yes
Current Modules
WS-X6848-GE-TX 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G RJ45 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6848-SFP 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G SFP (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6824-SFP 40G Fabric 24-Port 1G SFP (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6848-GE-TX 40G Fabric 48-Port 1G RJ45 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6816-10G 40G Fabric 16-Port 10G X2 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6816-10T 40G Fabric 16-Port 10G RJ45 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6908-10G 80G Fabric 8-Port 10G X2 (DFC4/XL) Yes
WS-X6904-40G 80G Fabric 4-Port 40G CFP

-OR- 16-Port 10G SFP (DFC4/XL)

Yes

Note: The list of supported LAN modules is based on current Supervisor Engine 2T (with Cisco Catalyst 6500-E) support. Thus any modules not already supported by this supervisor will not be supported in the new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis.

Existing Modules

There are three basic categories of existing (supported) LAN modules:

  • Legacy 40-Gbps fabric-based Cisco Catalyst 6700 Series, with CFC (or optional DFC4), and current Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series, with built-in DFC4.
  • Current 80-Gbps fabric-based Cisco Catalyst 6900 Series, with built-in DFC4.

Although the Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis will support each of the LAN modules noted previously, it is important to note that the associated ASICs and FPGAs of each LAN module will not change. In other words, each LAN module will continue to operate in the same way it does in an existing Cisco Catalyst 6500-E chassis, and there is no increased performance.

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL with Existing LAN modules

Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL with Existing LAN modules

Service Module Support

PID Description Support
Older Modules
WS-SVC-NAM-2 8G Fabric Network Analysis Module (v2) No
WS-SVC-FWM-1 8G Fabric Fire-Wall Services Modules (v1) No
WS-SVC-WISM-1 8G Fabric Wireless Integration Services Module (v1) No
Current Modules
WS-SVC-NAM-3 20G Fabric Network Analysis Module (v3) Yes
WS-SVC-ASA-SM 20G Fabric Adaptive Security Application

(Firewall) Services Modules (v2)

Yes
WS-SVC-WISM-2 20G Fabric Wireless Integration Services Module (v2) Yes

Note: The list of supported service modules is based on current Supervisor Engine 2T (with Cisco Catalyst 6500-E) support. Thus any modules not already supported by Supervisor Engine 2T will not be supported in the new Cisco Catalyst 6807-XL chassis.

 

More Related to Cisco Catalyst 6800 Switches

Cisco Catalyst 6800 Series-The New Campus Backbone Switches

Cisco Catalyst 6800: New Name, Same Game

Cisco Catalyst 6880-X Series Review

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