Cisco Readies Most Widely Deployed Network Switch to Tackle Next Decade’s Networking Challenges
Unparalleled refresh of the Catalyst 6500 delivers IPv6 and NetFlow ‘industry firsts,’ can triple performance, quadruple scalability, and provide potential investment protection for another decade
LAS VEGAS, NV – July 12, 2011 – Today at Cisco Live, the company’s annual IT and communications conference, Cisco introduced the infusion of multiple innovations into its flagship Catalyst® 6500 Series Switches, the most widely deployed network switches on earth. These innovations provide Catalyst 6500 customers with the capability to evolve their network infrastructure for the coming decade’s proliferation of connected devices, growth of video traffic, cloud computing business models and increasingly mobile workforces—without requiring “rip and replace” upgrades.
Awarded more than 500 patents, the Catalyst 6500 has been the de facto industry standard switching platform at the heart of the world’s campus, data center, WAN, and Metro Ethernet networks since its introduction in 1999 and has a $42 billion installed base, nearly 700,000 systems/110 million ports deployed and more than 25,000 customers worldwide. For years the platform has set the bar for product leadership, deployment scale and new innovation in the networking industry. The Catalyst 6500 led the industry’s port transition first from Fast Ethernet speeds to Gigabit Ethernet and then to 10 Gigabit Ethernet. In November 2010 it became the first modular switch to showcase 40 Gigabit Ethernet interoperability. The newly overhauled Catalyst 6500 continues this legacy of innovation with more “industry firsts,” such as seamless IPv4 and IPv6 support from the switch’s hardware platform, new network virtualization capabilities, a comprehensive set of L4-7 integrated services modules and new application performance and visibility monitoring through a completely revamped implementation of NetFlow.
At the heart of the makeover is the introduction of the highly anticipated Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series Supervisor Engine 2T, a 2-terabit card that unlocks 80 gigabits per second per slot, new feature-rich 10-gigabit and 10-Gigabit Ethernet line cards, and next-generation borderless services that provide customers with new mobility, security, network analysis and load balancing capabilities.
The new supervisor engine can increase the throughput capability of the Catalyst 6500 from 720 Gbps to 2 Tbps, a threefold increase. It can also quadruple the number of devices or users that can connect to a network. For example, a single Catalyst 6500 can now support up to 10,000 mobile devices.
All new line cards and the 2 Tbps supervisor are compatible with all Cisco E-Series chassis models, offering minimal intervention to the existing Catalyst 6500 E-Series infrastructure. This compatibility prevents rip-and-replace upgrades that jeopardize a customer’s network uptime and require additional personnel, expenses and time.