Cisco Catalyst 6880-X Series Review

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The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X Series Switch, part of the Cisco Catalyst 6800 product family, is a highly scalable and manageable solution for user access offering up to 1008 (FCS) 10/100/1000 ports within a single management system when working with the Catalyst 6800ia remote linecard, while providing the same feature set as a regular Catalyst 6500 that you might be longing for.

Based on the proven and stable Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series Supervisor Engine 2T architecture, this unique platform delivers unprecedented capabilities on day one that include best-in-class scalability, flexible 10G port density, a complete suite of L2/L3 virtualization, Virtual Switching System (VSS), Cisco Instant Access1, Application Visibility and Control (AVC), Security (Cisco TrustSec), multicast, IPv6, and rich media services (Medianet). With full MPLS/VPLS functionality and large table sizes (up to 2M IPv4 routes), this platform also offers a cost-optimal solution for Internet edge/peering deployments as well as emerging leaf-spine models.

Deployment Options

  • Standard and large table models
  • Base supervisor module with 16 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet Small Form-Factor Pluggable Plus (SFP+) transceivers
  • Up to 4 pluggable port cards, each supporting 16 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet SFP+
  • Expandable from 16 to 80 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet per system in multiples of 16
  • Single or optional dual redundant AC or DC platinum high efficiency power supplies
  • Standalone or VSS configuration
  • All ports support SFP/SFP+ 1G or 10G transceivers with no manual reconfiguration

Note: Cisco Instant Access on Cisco Catalyst 6880-X will be supported in Q1CY2014. Port cards will be supported in Q1CY2014.

The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X and Port cards.

Chassis-Cisco 6880-X Series

Cisco 6880x chassis

The New Catalyst 6880-X-CK6 Based “Extensible” Fixed Platform

The New Catalyst 6880-X-CK6 Based Extensible Fixed Platform

Note: Four 100G-Ready Port Slots, Front Serviceable Power Supplies, and Fan Tray NEBS Level 3-Compliant Platform

  • 6880-X comes in two flavorsSingle fixed Supervisor (based on SUP2T)
    • C6880-X-LE (Lite) with smaller hardware table
    • C6880-X (Heavy) with larger hardware table
  • Require minimum IOS 15.1SY with feature parity to SUP2T
  • Capable of 220 Gbps/Slot. Total of 2Tbps. 4Tbps in VSS.
  • Built-in 16 x 10G (10/100/1000 with Copper SFP or 1G/10G with SFP/+)Four half-width expansion slots available
    • 80 Gbps to backplane (ie. 2:1 Oversubscription)
    • Based on WS-X6904-40G (also support up to 16 x 10G)
    • Can disable second half of port ASIC to enable line rate (Performance Mode)
  • Dimension 8.5x 17.36 x 23 inches, Height = 4.85 RU
  • Dual 3KW Power Supply
  • Side-to-side airflow

Linecard-Catalyst 6880-X Switches

Cisco 6880x_modules

  • 16-Port 10G Module
  • Also comes with two flavors
    • C-6880-X-LE-16P10G (Lite) with smaller hardware table
    • C-6880-X-16P10G (Heavy) with larger hardware table
  • 16 x 10G (10/100/1000 with Copper SFP or 1G/10G with SFP/+)
    • 80 Gbps to backplane (ie. 2:1 Oversubscription)
    • Based on WS-X6904-40G (also support up to 16 x 10G)
    • Can disable second half of port ASIC to enable line rate (Performance Mode)
    • In other word, this is identical to the built-in ports
  • Linecard type can be mixed with chassis type but they will operate at the lowest common denominator, hence not recommended.

Catalyst 6880-X Hardware Components

Catalyst 6880-X Hardware Components

Typical Deployments for Cisco Catalyst 6880-X Switches

Typical deployments for Cisco Catalyst 6880-X switches

Performance and Scalability Attributes

  • Up to 300 Mpps IPv4 or 150 Mpps IPv6 forwarding rate
  • Up to 300 Mpps L2 switching rate
  • Up to 2M IPv4 or 1M IPv6 unicast routes or dual stack (shared)
  • Up to 128K multicast routes for IPv4 or IPv6
  • Up to 128K MAC entries
  • Up to 256K security ACL/QoS shared entries
  • Up to 5M Flexible Netflow entries per system, up to 1M per module slot
  • Full suite of MPLS features with 16K VPN labels
  • 16 paths load sharing (unicast, multicast, and MPLS)
  • Hardware control plane policing (CoPP) and rate limiters
  • Aggregate QoS policing, two-level shaping, dual strict priority queueing
  • Each port is multirate supporting interface speeds from 1 Gbps3 up to 40 Gbps4

More Cisco 6880-X Series’ Highlights

Rich Network Software Services

The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X delivers industry-leading features that are proven on the Cisco Catalyst 6500 platform and deployed widely across different verticals in enterprise and service providers such as education, financials, healthcare, retail, transportation, and managed services. Primary benefits and innovations include:

  1. •Platform Scalability: Pay as you grow model to meet and expand the growing enterprise 10G port density requirements in radically improved economics.
  2. •Application Visibility and Control (AVC): Support for advanced applications such as Flexible Netflow for deeper visibility into the applications to optimize network resource usage, plan network capacity, and enhance security monitoring at application level. The platform also offers several rich media features, including Medianet, to ease video deployments in the enterprise and offer a rich user viewing experience for IPTV, Telepresence, and video surveillance.
  3. •Security: Support for Cisco TrustSec (CTS), to provide IEEE 802.1AE MACsec encryption and role-based ACL, CoPP to prevent DoS attacks and Cisco ISE to safeguard and manage end-to-end security for the enterprise.
  4. •Virtualization: Comprehensive suite of Virtualization features including L2/L3 VPN, full MPLS, EVN, VRF aware applications for NAT Netflow, GRE for v4/v6, L2 extensions with VPLS etc. to segment different user groups and serve unique security/QoS policy requirements of each of these diverse user groups.
  5. •High Availability: By connecting two of the switches in VSS mode, the platform supports nonstop communication with stateful interchassis failover and subsecond virtual switch recovery. VSS mode eliminates the need for a First Hop Redundancy Protocol (FHRP) such as HSRP or VRRP in a simplified loop-free topology.

Smart Operations

The Cisco Catalyst 6880-X offers several smart solutions to manage the complex and growing demands of the enterprise and hence delivers significant operational benefits, including ease of management, configuration, and provisioning for the next-generation backbone. These solutions include:

  1. •VSS, a widely deployed solution for smart management with a single IP address and configuration, with support for Multichassis EtherChannel (MEC).
  2. •Smart Install Director for zero-touch installation, upgrade, and replacement. This solution provides significant ease of use to automate software image management, configuration, and upgrade of directly connected switches. In addition, this solution simplifies provisioning of new switches with network expansion and faster replacement of switches for quick failure recovery.
  3. •Cisco Instant Access, an innovative technology to simplify, manage, and troubleshoot with a single point of management. This technology allows users to manage an entire distribution pod of connected access switches in one domain therby eliminating repetitive configuration of VLANs and portchannels across the pod. This solution not only extends several backbone features to the access layer that would otherwise not be available on the access but it also preserves the widely deployed access features such as PoE+ and stacking.
  4. •Enhanced Fast Software Upgrade(EFSU) in an interchassis VSS configuration.
  5. •Cisco Prime support, an integrated device management solution.

Note: SFP+ ports capable of supporting 1G SFPs and 10G SFP+s. Using the Cisco GLC-T SFP (1G Copper SFP) 1G/1000 Mbps Copper is also supported. 4 With a reverse breakout cable (future support) combining four 10G ports to act as a 40G port.

More Related Cisco 6880-X Series:

Cisco Catalyst 6800: New Name, Same Game

Cisco Delivers “Monster” Catalyst Switch, Routers for SDN Environments

Cisco Catalyst 6800 Switch and Friends

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