Cisco has released a new line of Catalyst routers designed for the company’s software-defined WAN technologies. The Catalyst 8000 solutions offer a far superior SD-WAN platform than the ISR routers that received customer complaints in the past. The 8300 Series is an upgrade to the 4400 Integrated Services Router (ISR), and the 8500 Series is an update to the 1001-HX and 1002-HX Aggregation Services Router (ASR). The 8500 was built by Cisco for use in data centers and colocation facilities.
The Catalyst 8000 family is divided into three key platforms:
The 8500, which is designed to replace the ASR 1001-HX / ASR 1002-HX and is located in a data center/colocation for extremely high performance.
C8500-12X: 1RU, with 12x 1/10GbE interfaces – Up to 40 Gbps SD-WAN throughput OR 118 Gbps of standard forwarding throughput
C8500-12X4QC: 1RU, with 12x 1/10GbE interfaces, 2x 40/100GbE interfaces, and 2x 40GbE interfaces – Up to 68 Gbps SD-WAN throughput OR 197 Gbps of standard forwarding throughput
C8500L-8S4X: Cisco C8500L-8S4X Edge Platform
The 8300, is positioned at the branch and was designed to replace the ISR4400. This platform provides excellent performance while also focusing on offering services such as switching, VoIP, security, and more at the branch in a small footprint.
C8300-1N1S-6T: 1RU, 1 NIM module slot, 1 SM module slot, 1 PIM module slot (for 4G/5G wireless WAN), and 6x 1GbE interfaces – Up to 1.9 Gbps SD-WAN throughput
C8300-1N1S-4T2X: 1RU, 1 NIM module slot, 1 SM module slot, 1 PIM module slot, and 4x 1GbE interfaces + 2x 10GbE interfaces – Up to 15 Gbps SD-WAN throughput
C8300-2N2S-6T: 2RU, 2 NIM module slots, 2 SM module slots, 1 PIM module slot, and 6x 1GbE interfaces – Up to 1.9 Gbps SD-WAN throughput
C8300-2N2S-4T2X: 2RU, 2 NIM module slots, 2 SM module slots, 1 PIM module slot, and 4x 1GbE interfaces + 2x 10GbE interfaces – Up to 18 Gbps SD-WAN throughput
The 8200, is intended to replace the ISR4300. The platform serves as the foundation for branch virtualization, combining routing, switching, and application hosting into a tiny, One Rack-Unit (1RU) device for the virtualized branch.
C8200-1N-4T: C8200 1RU w/ 1 NIM slot and 4 x 1-Gigabit Ethernet WAN ports
C8200L-1N-4T: C8200L 1RU w/ 1 NIM slot and 4 x 1-Gigabit Ethernet WAN ports
C8200-UCPE-1N8: Cisco Catalyst 8200 Edge uCPE with 1 NIM slot and 1 PIM slot, 6 x 1 Gigabit Ethernet ports, and 8-core CPU, 2.5 in. HDD, M.2 slot
Why Upgrade to Cisco Catalyst 8000 Series Routers?
1.The Catalyst 8000 Isn’t Just a Router.
Under the hood, the 8000 series platform has a lot of processing capability to handle more than just routing. This capability can be used to run KVM-based containers such as Thousand Eyes, Wireshark, and others. In addition to its high performance, IOS-XE offers excellent support for programmability and automation. These devices can be accessed via a custom automation and programmability solution, Cisco’s campus automation tool DNA Center, or the company’s WAN automation product vManage.
Cisco first provided an IOS-XE image for SD-WAN (Viptela) using a different binary. That meant that if you wanted to use the SD-WAN feature set, you needed to install a single image. You installed a different image if you wanted conventional IOS-XE. As since 17.2, you can boot into any mode you wish by using a universal binary. When switching between images, make a backup of your configuration because it can be blown away in some cases.
3.Support for 40G and 100G
Interconnections between WANs and LANs are becoming faster. 40G and 100G connections are required in some circumstances. The 8000 series platforms, which are powered by the all-new third-generation QuantumFlow Processor (QFP) Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC), can enable this connectivity and forward high levels of IPsEC traffic. If you’re still using 10G/1G ports, these platforms can provide high-density port counts.
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