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Wired Networks Thread, New Core Switches / rollout of new switches in Technical; An opportunity has arisen to spend some money so long as it is spent quick. At the moment I have ...
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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    New Core Switches / rollout of new switches

    An opportunity has arisen to spend some money so long as it is spent quick.

    At the moment I have a single 3COM 5500G as my core switch, that connects all the servers and ultimately all the switches. This is both old and without a failover of any kind, which makes me nervous, as it is the very definition of a SPOF.

    The rest of the school is 3COM switches of varying ages and decrepitude, and they are, generally speaking, a bit flaky and a pain in the proverbial.

    So this is what I'd like to do, with your advice kind EduGeekers: I want to pick a new brand of switch (nominally one of HP, Cisco, Juniper, but feel free to make suggestions), I want to have a redundant core, and I want to be able to slowly roll out a replacement program over the course of the next few years using that same brand, to generally improve the network infrastructure.

    These core switches in particular would be best if they had 802.3ad support, for proper load balancing on servers. There's a good number of fibre runs around the school that at the moment, connect to other switches that then Cat5 into the core, which can be a bottleneck; any way of improving this would be appreciated, be it multiple fibre ports or 10Gb ports to connect to other switches in the rack, removing the bottleneck. The core only needs 24 ports to cover the servers (currently 2x6 for virtual hosts, 2x2 for other physical servers, but I want room for expansion to another virtual host in future, possibly); it may then need more depending on how the other switches will connect (currently 4 other switches in that cabinet).

    Any particular recommendations? The core switches specifically I would rather do right and not cheap out, but the brand in general should be fairly good VFM if possible, as I'm going to have to scrape and scrimp to get the rest of the kit in across the network over the coming years...

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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    Anyone got any thoughts? I'm certain there are people on here who know more about this than me - at least I hope so, for the sake of all your networks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofsanta View Post
    An opportunity has arisen to spend some money so long as it is spent quick.
    By coincidence, exactly the same thing happened to us..
    We also are replacing ageing 5500 switches.

    We are getting 4X HP 5800 Switch Series - HP Networking, HP 5800-24G-PoE+ Switch, JC099A, HP 5800-24G Switch, JC100A, HP 5800-24G-SFP Switch, JC103A, HP 5800-48G-PoE Switch, JC104A, HP 5800-48G Switch, JC105A, HP 5800-48G Switch with 2 Slots, JC101A, HP 5800AF-48G Swi
    The A5800's look spot on for core switches.
    We'll move the 5500's out to the near edge and connect them back to the core with 10GB's links. We'll also have enough 10Gb/s for a bladecentre too.

    I would also recommend that you speak with mike@switchshop Switchshop : independent specialist provider of IT network equipment solutions

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    wesleyw's Avatar
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    We went with Extreme kit as pound for pound its pretty much unbeatable Cisco switches were slower and much more expensive and I believe extreme have some even better discounts now for their kit. I'm now looking to replace the older D-Link switches in nooks and crannies with new extreme switches.


    Wes

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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    The A5800's look spot on for core switches.
    Any idea on cost? Just a ballpark figure so I can check exactly how much money is presented to me for this opportunity!

    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    I would also recommend that you speak with mike@switchshop Switchshop : independent specialist provider of IT network equipment solutions
    Switchshop were just the people I was going to ask, as it happens - normally best pricing and stock for network equipment. And they send me an advent calendar each Christmas and a bar of Dairy Milk at Easter, so they've certainly won my heart

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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wesleyw View Post
    We went with Extreme kit as pound for pound its pretty much unbeatable Cisco switches were slower and much more expensive and I believe extreme have some even better discounts now for their kit. I'm now looking to replace the older D-Link switches in nooks and crannies with new extreme switches.
    I must confess to never having heard of them (which always makes me cautious) and I can't spot their kit on any of the usual suppliers sites - any more info on them, are they a rebadged brand?

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    Also in the "leftover cash" area and looking at swapping out the core. Leaning towards HP. Would also be interested in those ballpark figures.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofsanta View Post
    Any idea on cost? Just a ballpark figure so I can check exactly how much money is presented to me for this opportunity!

    you'd be looking at just over 2k for a 24port A5800. Add more for 10Gb/s modules, transceivers and the like.
    I would recommend that you stick with HP kit - at least stick with the 3com line. It will make configuration much more simple without needing to learn another operating system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    you'd be looking at just over 2k for a 24port A5800. Add more for 10Gb/s modules, transceivers and the like.
    I would recommend that you stick with HP kit - at least stick with the 3com line. It will make configuration much more simple without needing to learn another operating system.
    I have avoided CLI on networking kit since finishing my CCNA module at Uni - for how often I need to muck around with switch configuration, web GUI does me fine and results in less foetal-position administration.

    SFPs are a painful thing to have to purchase. Everything always seems such good value until you add them in

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofsanta View Post
    Any idea on cost? Just a ballpark figure so I can check exactly how much money is presented to me for this opportunity!
    Hi mate,

    To give a ballpark figure, you should be paying no more than £3200 for this. The part code is JC099A. If it's past of a larger deal, you should get a very good price.

    Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofsanta View Post
    I have avoided CLI on networking kit since finishing my CCNA module at Uni - for how often I need to muck around with switch configuration, web GUI does me fine and results in less foetal-position administration.
    Once you have a basic setup script CLI is MUCH faster and more reliable.
    You can also guarantee that all the switches are setup identically. it's also easier to debug.
    Fair enough if you config once in a blue moon, but if your replacing equipment it is the way forward.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Millgate View Post
    Hi mate,

    To give a ballpark figure, you should be paying no more than £3200 for this. The part code is JC099A. If it's past of a larger deal, you should get a very good price.

    Thanks
    Thats for PoE. non-PoE is a grand cheaper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    Once you have a basic setup script CLI is MUCH faster and more reliable.
    You can also guarantee that all the switches are setup identically. it's also easier to debug.
    Fair enough if you config once in a blue moon, but if your replacing equipment it is the way forward.
    Fair point - don't suppose there's a convenient "export this setup to command file" option in the switches, in the same manner as a backup of an SQL database is actually the code to create it again?

    Quote Originally Posted by Millgate View Post
    To give a ballpark figure, you should be paying no more than £3200 for this. The part code is JC099A.
    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    Thats for PoE. non-PoE is a grand cheaper.
    No need for PoE on the core - another, cheaper 48-port in the same cab can do that for us - in which case I take it the JC100A is the relevant, non-POE kit?

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    I would recommend for the sheer reliability and life span the Juniper EX2200 switches, I have never come across such a solid switch and they are VERY easy to configure and pretty cheap too actually, £800 will get you a layer 3 48-port 2200 which is what we have here and they are great!

    And yes they DO support 802.1ad and 802.1x which I am going to be playing with very soon.

    Personally I'd use them on the core.

    As a quick demo:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbUr1PUrxTE

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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofsanta View Post
    Fair point - don't suppose there's a convenient "export this setup to command file" option in the switches, in the same manner as a backup of an SQL database is actually the code to create it again?
    yes just do:
    Code:
     display current-configuration
    copy and paste to text

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