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Wireless Networks Thread, Core switch options for a small school in Technical; Current situation: IT suite has main switches, 2x3Com 4500G's. All PC cabling comes to this cabinet. Servers are in another ...
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    Core switch options for a small school

    Current situation:

    IT suite has main switches, 2x3Com 4500G's. All PC cabling comes to this cabinet.
    Servers are in another location, with copper running from there (50m away) to the switches. Not ideal - they could do with their own switch.

    I'm going to have fibre put in between the 2 areas, which is great as the switches have 4 SFP ports each that I can put a few fibre modules in.

    But with the servers, if I bought another one of those switches for the core, it doesn't seem enough in terms of fibre capacity. Only 4 1Gb fibres shared between 2 (soon to be 3) switches. Of course I could buy more switches but I've always preferred my core switch to be a single unit.

    Had a Procurve 5406zl in my last job, which was a great piece of kit, but that was the core switch for a 900+ machine network. Here there are less than 100 PC's. So it seems overkill, even allowing for future expansion.

    Is there anything in the middle? A decent L3 switch with more than 4 SFP ports?
    Last edited by sidewinder; 13th May 2011 at 04:47 PM.

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    m25man's Avatar
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    Look at using a Netgear GSM7328s at each end, these also have a stacking/expansion option with a 24gb backplane.
    There is a complementary 24 port SFP switch which means that when stacked you would have more fibre than you would ever want.
    These switches have 4 Gigabit SFPs and 2 x 10Gbe ports

    Unfortunately having your servers 50m away from your distribution point is not optimal but you can Trunk/LAG the servers into the GSM7328s and uplink that switch back to your distribution closet over the 10Gbe links leaving you 4 SFP slots at each location.

    Yes a modular solution is great but at what cost?

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sidewinder View Post

    Only 4 1Gb fibres shared between 2 (soon to be 3) switches.
    Whats wrong with that?

    All my 30 + edge switches have 1gb connections back to my 5406zl core switch - only one of them has ever got about 40% utilization and that was when i was multicasting to 35 pc's.

    Most of my edge switchs are 48 port Hp 2610's which have between 35 and 47 connections to them or various sorts.

    I've used HP 5500 series switchs before which is now the model above the ones you have now but you can buy modules to go in the back to increase the fiber connections to the switch.

    My last school uses one for its core and has around 600 pc's.


    EDIT: I think 10Gb network links to your servers/ between your switches it way OTT for your current network.

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    m25man's Avatar
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    5406 with 48 Ports (No Fibre) £4000

    Netgear GSM7328s £1100 each = £2200 + 2 x 10Gbe Modules £640 Total outlay £2840
    Or cheaper still,
    Use a GSM7328FS which is 24 empty SFP slots + 4 Copper full L3 for around £800
    Fit as many SFP Copper or Fibre Modules as you need @ £130 each
    Last edited by m25man; 14th May 2011 at 05:31 AM. Reason: Pricing typical EBuyer ...

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    You already have 3Com which has been brought by hp, I'd be pushing for HP stuff if just to avoid Netgear.

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    m25man's Avatar
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    The 3com 4500 went EOL in Sept 2010, although there are a few still being punted around on ebay for £1400!
    Local stacking is achieved using 10Gbe modules and CX4 cables which are an extra cost and expensive.

    Whilst I try not to mix vendors on my networks sometimes its unavoidable, in fact most people here choose to integrate 3rd party wireless controllers into their lans so why not core switches...

    Your cheapest option is the Netgear GSM7328FS, L3 has 4 Gigabit Copper and 24 SFP Ports
    These can take either Copper or Fibre SFPs @ £130 each (or less if you use generic modules)
    This will let you build a distribution switch to feed your 4500g's from that you won't find from any other vendor for the price...

    @SYNACK,
    I personally find your prejudice against Netgear wholly unjustified. Your experiences of Netgear down there in the colonies is certainly no comparison of what we have here... ProSafe products now get UK/US&Canada 24x7 help desk support and advance replacement warranty.
    Yes they still need to work at it as they are still a way off of HP's support levels but the playing field is levelling and the price per port value speaks for itself.

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    @m25man - people come to forums for opinions and while your location may be graced be reasonable service from NetGear at the moment it does not mean that it always will and it is best to be warned. The only reason I even considered NetGear again was because of these forums and it bit me rather nastily. Not providing realivant information just leaves this as an incomplete resource and a dangerous trap for others. If you want I'll rephrase - If you are not in the promised land of the UK or US then stay well clear of the unhelpful clutches of the NetGear empire and even if you are don't be suprised if they turn on you at the drop of a hat later.
    Last edited by SYNACK; 14th May 2011 at 10:14 AM.

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Even in the UK the netgear switches we have are pretty useless...

  9. Thanks to glennda from:

    SYNACK (14th May 2011)

  10. #9

    featured_spectre's Avatar
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    I'm with glendda and synack...we replaced our network from netgears to 3com/hp and will stick with them. Netgear for us were useless. The warranty support tried to blame us when one of our switches went funny and independent testing proved the Fault to be netgear.
    Last edited by featured_spectre; 14th May 2011 at 11:05 AM.

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    Fart to be netgear.
    wow you had some strange switches

  12. #11

    featured_spectre's Avatar
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    Haha, meant to be fault...brain Fart. Lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by m25man View Post
    The 3com 4500 went EOL in Sept 2010, although there are a few still being punted around on ebay for £1400!
    That just can't be true. I bought several last week, both 48 and 26 port models. Branded HP but with 3com operating systems.

    I'd stick with HP/3com. From what I understand HP are mostly moving their kit to 3com technology.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sidewinder View Post
    Is there anything in the middle? A decent L3 switch with more than 4 SFP ports?
    I'd go with a 4800 or 5500 with an extra sfp module

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    That just can't be true. I bought several last week, both 48 and 26 port models. Branded HP but with 3com operating systems.

    I'd stick with HP/3com. From what I understand HP are mostly moving their kit to 3com technology.
    Only going by what I found here
    3Com 4500G 24-Port Layer 3 Managed Gigabit Switch W/ 4x Combo SFP + 2x 10GE Uplinks - 3CR17761-91-UK
    And on the HP website...

    It looks like the 4500G (JE507A) has been dumped into the Stock in the Channel for a while so the distributors get rid of unsold stock and unscrupulous vendors sell then to end users with fat margins.
    On the other hand it had quite a respectable spec so I have no idea why they replaced it probably all part of the HP master plan.

    The 4510 still seems to be current though.
    Last edited by m25man; 14th May 2011 at 11:38 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by m25man View Post
    Only going by what I found here
    3Com 4500G 24-Port Layer 3 Managed Gigabit Switch W/ 4x Combo SFP + 2x 10GE Uplinks - 3CR17761-91-UK
    And on the HP website...

    It looks like the 4500G (JE507A) has been dumped into the Stock in the Channel for a while so the distributors get rid of unsold stock and unscrupulous vendors sell then to end users with fat margins.
    On the other hand it had quite a respectable spec so I have no idea why they replaced it probably all part of the HP master plan.

    The 4510 still seems to be current though.

    The 4500 are still on the HP website:
    HP E4500 Switch Series - HP Networking

    entire range, much of which was originally 3com:
    Networking switches - HP Networking



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