Cisco Updates Its High-end Switches to Offer 40GbE and 100GbE Capabilities

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Cisco has updated its switching portfolio with 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) and 40 GE capabilities, in a move aimed at datacentres and large campuses requiring heavy-duty bandwidth.

Cisco Updates Its High-end Switches to Offer 40GbE and 100GbE Capabilities

A 40 GE option is available for the Catalyst 6500 switching line and both 40 GE and 100 GE capabilities are available for the Nexus 7000 line for data center and service provider networks.     Two new M2-Series modules for the Nexus 7000 are available: a 2-port, 100GbE Module delivers up to 32 100GE ports and the M2-Series 6-port 40GbE Module provides 96 non-blocking 40 GE ports.

Cisco is also introducing a capability it calls Easy Virtual Networking, which simplifies network virtualization functionality for its Catalyst 6500, 4500 and ASR 1000 product lines. A new Nexus 1010-X appliance enables scalable virtual services in a data center environment.

“What we’re doing today is announcing extensions to our existing switching platforms,” said Ram Velaga, Cisco’s vice president of product management for switching, on Wednesday. “Juniper does not have 40GbE or 100GbE on their switching platforms yet,” he added.

A new Nexus 1010-X Virtual Services Appliance offers a dedicated hardware platform for scalable deployment of services critical to virtualization infrastructure. The new Nexus 3064-X switch supports a variety of 1/10/40 Gigabit Ethernet connectivity options as a high-performance, high-density, ultra-low latency Ethernet Switch to aim at the financial industry.

Providing investment protection for the Catalyst 6500 Series, Cisco is also offering a new 40 Gigabit Ethernet Interface module to help customers prepare their networks for transitions to 40 GE. The Catalyst 6500 E Series chassis are now validated to support full 160 gigabits per slot throughput in active/active mode.

Aimed at space-constrained environments the new Catalyst 4500-X switch is a fixed aggregation 1 RU switch. Cisco also announced simpler network virtualization functionality for its Catalyst 6500, 4500 and Aggregation Services Router (ASR) 1000 product line with a new technology called Easy Virtual Network as well as scalable virtual services with a new Nexus 1010-X appliance for the data center.

The Nexus 7000 M2-Series 2-port 100GbE Module is an add-in linecard for the Nexus 7000 switch that can provide up to 32 100GbE ports with an aggregate throughput of 15 terabits per second. It’s aimed at major service providers requiring high-throughput switching between multiple datacentres, or within very large facilities. The Nexus 7000 M2-Series 6-port 40GbE Module does the same job for 40GbE, and can provide up to 96 ports on a single chassis.


Operational Efficiencies

To compliment accelerating Catalyst and Nexus switches to 40 GE and 100 GE options Cisco introduced solutions to help simplify network virtualization and enhance network monitoring, troubleshooting, and management. New features in Cisco NX-OS software include PowerOn Auto-Provisioning and Python scripting to customize network behavior based on events as they happen, simplify configuration, and harness network intelligence. A Data Center Network Manager (DCNM) simplifies Unified Fabric management and provides a converged LAN and Storage operational dashboard, bringing visibility and advanced diagnostic capabilities into the virtualized data center or cloud.

“Network virtualization is becoming more important as enterprises seek to address security and regulatory concerns without the expense of overlay networks,” said Dominique Massoni, Network Engineering Operations Manager at EDF Group. “There are a number of available solutions, with varying degrees of scalability and complexity. We found Easy Virtual Network to be the right solution for us. It is simple, easy to replicate between sites, and is fully compatible with the solution we have been using, so we didn’t have to redo the work we’ve already done.”


In related news, Cisco announced last summer that U.S. Signal deployed its Cisco ASR 9000 Series to upgrade its Internet Protocol Next-Generation Network (IP NGN) – which is designed to support faster virtual Carrier Ethernet services and increase the adoption of a new Managed Data Center service by enterprise customers.


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