Networking, Security

Preview: Cisco Compact Catalyst switches

Cisco has released a new range of compact Catalyst switches switches in Australia.. These switches are designed to bring the feature set of the larger Catalyst switches such as the 2960s, 3750, and 4500 into a smaller form factor.

Distributed switches

The primary reason for introducing these switches is the scenario when there isn’t sufficient cabling in the building to centralise all switch ports to the central patch panel. For one reason or another we come across buildings where an Ethernet connection goes out from the main switch closet to a small switch which then supplies Ethernet for a number of nodes. In the past the only option for these small switches were cheap small business/home office switches which had no security or quality of service and not to mention dubious reliability.  The Catalyst Compact means you can put in a quality switch which supports all the features of the core switches. (I’m using the term core switch in this article to define switches in the main server room/data centre).Catalyst compact switch networkSecurity

The Catalyst switches support MacSec (802.11ae). MacSec encrypts data along the wire at layer 2. This protects data from being read from the LAN. Because it’s layer 2 it supports switch features such as QoS, policy based switching and monitoring tools. MacSec requires both ends to be able to encrypt and decrypt the traffic. In this case the Catalyst compact switches do the encrypt/decypt between itself and the core switching.

EnergyWise

Energywise is a power consumption monitoring and power saving feature set that allows organisations to monitor and audit how much power their switches are using. In addition Energywise  switches can use up to 78% less power than equivalent switches in the market through clever management of their power use.

Source Miercom: http://www.miercom.com/dl.html?fid=20100109&type=report&PHPSESSID=f584878045b6b6016bc8a4f3502256f6

The savings on power can be worthwhile for large organisations and Energywise is a valuable feature for companies that have to report on carbon dioxide emissions.

Power over Ethernet

In locations where it is not practical to have power packs some of the Catalyst compact switches have the option to be powered by Power over Ethernet (POE) from the core switches. It is also possible for the compact Catalyst switches to in turn provide POE to devices. However this requires the core switch to support POE+ in order for enough power to flow through to the end devices. (Catalyst 3560-C and Catalyst 2960-C)

If you don’t want PoE then an internal power supply can be specified.

Dual Purpose Uplinks

The uplink ports can be either fibre (SFP) or copper (RJ45)

Cisco compact Catalyst switch

Other features

  • Fanless design
  • Auto Smart Ports (auto configs switches based upon device i.e. Phone)
  • Dynamic ARP Inspection
  • DHCP Snooping
  • IP Source Guard
  •  Port Security


 

Model Range

Model 3560CG-8PC-S 3560CG-8TC-S C3560CPD-8PT-S C3560C-8PC-S C3560C-12PC-S
Feature Set IP Base
Total Ethernet Ports 8 – 10/100/1000 8 – 10/100 12 – 10/100
Total PoE/PoE+ Output   Ports 8 PoE(+) - 8 PoE 8 PoE(+) 12 PoE(+)
MACsec Yes Yes Yes - -
Uplinks 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 x 1G that also serves as   PoE+ inputs 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP
Available PoE Power 124W - Up to 15.4W 124W 124W
Model 2960CG-8TC-L 2960CPD-8PT-L 2960CPD-8TT-L C2960C-8TC-L C2960C-8TC-S C2960C-8PC-L C2960C-12PC-L
Feature Set LAN Base Layer 2
Total Ethernet Ports 8 – 10/100/1000 8 – 10/100 12 – 10/100
Total PoE/PoE+ Output   Ports - 8 PoE - 8 PoE 12 PoE
MACsec No
Uplinks 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 x 1G that also serves as   PoE+ inputs 2 x 1G that also serves as   PoE+ inputs 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP 2 dual-purpose; 1G copper/1G   SFP
Available PoE Power - up to 22.4W - - - 124W 124W

About Mark

Mark Elliott has been working in IT for over 13 years. Starting as network and security engineer Mark has worked for IT and Telecommunications companies in Sydney, Australia. Now based at CustomTec he is responsible for customer account management and business development across Australia, NZ and South East Asia.

If you would like to know more about Cisco Catalyst Compact switches then contact me at I would happy to assist

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About customtec

CustomTec is an IT services company based in Sydney servicing Australia, NZ and South-East Asia. The areas of specialisation are servers, storage, Cloud computing, unified communications and managed IT services. Mark Elliott has been working in IT for over 13 years. Starting as network and security engineer Mark has worked for IT and Telecommunications companies in Sydney, Australia.

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