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Wired Networks Thread, Upgrade core switch in Technical; I'm looking to upgrade our core network switch which is an old Netgear L3 with 12 SFP ports - which ...
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    Sheridan's Avatar
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    Upgrade core switch

    I'm looking to upgrade our core network switch which is an old Netgear L3 with 12 SFP ports - which connects our 8 fibre seperate subnets together. I'd like to keep this reasonably cost effective but would like to take it up from the 1gb to 10gb so the rest of the switches downstream can also be upgraded to 1gb as a minimum.

    Anyone got any recommendations or band experiences with any particular models like this? To be honest the netgear is very basic, but has functioned very reliably for the last 7 years but we do need to take a step towards increasing our backbone speed.

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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    We put a pair of HP A5800s in a stack a couple of years ago, they've been excellent. You can get 10GbE modules for them and fibre expansion modules - there are two free slots at the back, we've filled one on each with 16 slot SFP modules for all our fibre.

    All redundant, plenty fast enough, easily expandable for current and future needs (you can always stack extra switches if you really need) and great value for money compared to the ProCurve stuff.

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    Sheridan (21st May 2014)

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    foofighterjim's Avatar
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    I have used the HP 4512zl for a number of years, it isn't particularly cheap as a chassis but there are plenty of deals that include a number of modules. They also so a 5406 if 12 bays is too much.

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    We have a pair of Cisco 4500X switches at our core. They have been bomb proof! All our links to the stacks are 10GB

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    Cheers, the HP ones seem to get favourable feedback in general

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    Sephiroth's Avatar
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    I recently upgraded our entire infrastructure to Netgear from HP. the core switch is an M7300, 24 port SFP+ (capable of 10Gb fibre) with 4 10GbE capable ethernet combi-ports. I would highly recommend that.

    Other than that, the HP ZL series chassis switch series is worth looking at, as that's what I took out, having had it for some time. It worked flawlessly, but the whole solution from HP was too expensive to consider getting additional modules for it.

    Hope that helps.

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    The 5800 pair solution is probably the best VFM at the moment and offers resailiency in HP's IRF. The pair, or more, can be virtualised with a 10G link which can be in a different builidng. Beware the capacity on some of the lower end (and possibly near end of sale) chassis switches. e.g. the 5406 will only support 2 x 10G links at full speed per slot.

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    Sephiroth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njc235 View Post
    the 5406 will only support 2 x 10G links at full speed per slot.
    Where did you get this information from? Not saying that you're wrong, as I had never actually speedchecked our fiber, but I had 8 x 10G links at running on my 5406 on 2 x 4 port modules.

    Either way, it doesn't matter to me, since I decided to utilise the fiber runs that my predecessor put in place, doubling up the fiber and giving us a 20G backbone for the price of 16 SFP+ trancievers!

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    We are using both the 5406zl and the 5412zl and they are both excellent switches. We have 2x 5412zl either end of a 10gb link to a remote site and one 5406zl as a main connection point in another part of the building. They've never failed (touches wood).

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    zag
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sephiroth View Post
    I recently upgraded our entire infrastructure to Netgear from HP. the core switch is an M7300, 24 port SFP+ (capable of 10Gb fibre) with 4 10GbE capable ethernet combi-ports. I would highly recommend that.

    Other than that, the HP ZL series chassis switch series is worth looking at, as that's what I took out, having had it for some time. It worked flawlessly, but the whole solution from HP was too expensive to consider getting additional modules for it.

    Hope that helps.
    I love the netgear switches and that looks great, but why does it only have 4 ethernet ports? We have 8 Hyper-V servers i'd like to plug into it

    Also how is the noise levels on it? Ours is in my office so I need something thats quiet.

    I've been impressed with the recent netgear switches.

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    Sephiroth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zag View Post
    I love the netgear switches and that looks great, but why does it only have 4 ethernet ports? We have 8 Hyper-V servers i'd like to plug into it

    Also how is the noise levels on it? Ours is in my office so I need something thats quiet.

    I've been impressed with the recent netgear switches.
    I wouldn't say that it's quiet, but it's certainly quieter than any other switch that we have, with the exception of the M5300 series switches that we are using as edge switching.

    As for the ethernet... It's a Fiber switch, not copper. If you want a 10G Copper switch, look at the M7100 which has 24 x 10G ethernet ports + 4 combi SFP+. Bear in mind that you would need the equivalent 10 capable cards in the back of your servers (without meaning to sound patronising... sorry).

    I don't know what your setup is, but I would recommend having your core ONLY serving your cabinets (in our case the core rack is completely seperate from the server rack, but I would at least have a dedicated server switch stack).

    I like the latest versions of them because when you stack them, you get 1 IP address and 1 interface for the stack, not 1 for each switch. Also means that you can have aggrigation over several switches. I have 1 x 10G fiber to 2 seperate switches in a stack set to a single 20 link.

    Edit - if you don't like the sound in your office from the switches, I recommend one of these... APC NetShelter CX

    I have the 38U version, and it's phenominal!
    Last edited by Sephiroth; 22nd May 2014 at 11:34 AM. Reason: Missed a bit...

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    Sheridan's Avatar
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    The netgear XSM7224 look quite good too - about the £4k mark which leaves some budget for the secondary switches. Looks like the netgear ones require a license upgrade from L2 to L3 though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheridan View Post
    The netgear XSM7224 look quite good too - about the £4k mark which leaves some budget for the secondary switches. Looks like the netgear ones require a license upgrade from L2 to L3 though.
    That code encompasses both the M7300 and the M7100. At £4k it'll be the fiber one I assume?

    Yes, you'll need a licence to upgrade from L2+ to L3, though I've seen no reason to upgrade yet. the good thing is that if you need to in the future, you can just buy that licence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sephiroth;[URL="javascript:dialecticDial('1175688');"
    1175688[/URL]]Where did you get this information from? !
    This is a small extract from a tech paper on the 5400/8200 chassis.

    For wire-rate connectivity, do not connect more than two 10-GbE ports to a channel . In Figure 24, it is possibleto connect ports 1–4 for wire-rate connectivity because the first channel will have ports 1 and 4 connected,while the second channel will use ports 2 and 3 . If ports 1, 4, and 6 are connected, but other ports areunused, the three ports will share up to 23 .4 Gbps of bandwidth . If ports 1, 4, 6, and 8 are connected, theports will share 23 .4 Gbps of bandwidth between the four ports . The E8200 zl series can support up to fourwire-rate interfaces on an 8-port 10 GbE module (J9538A) .
    The 10 GbE module (J9538A) delivers additional performance for E5400 zl Switches . When compared to thefirst-generation zl modules, the bandwidth channels have been improved to a maximum capacity of 15 .8 Gbpsper channel, as opposed to 14 .4 Gbps channels for the standard zl modules . An 8-port 10 GbE module hastwo 15 .8 Gbps channels, for an aggregate of 31 .6 Gbps of channel bandwidth . There is a fixed assignmentbetween ports and channel bandwidth . For 8-port 10 GbE modules, each 15 .8 Gbps channel is allocated tofour 10-GbE ports .

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    Sephiroth's Avatar
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    @njc235: Fair enough. I din't realise this limitation, though I have 2 x 4 port 10G modules. Is the limitation only present when using a single 8 port module or is it over the whole chassis? I'll be iritated if it's the chassis, as the previous NM here had HP design our previous network infrastructure themselves.

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