Blog

April 12, 2018
HPE/Aruba M series vs. F series switches is like PUBG v. Fortnite

Recently, there has been a lot of buzz around the HPE/Aruba M series of switches. Katie Taisey's curiosity led her to look and see what customers would receive from the M version of switches as compared to the F versions of the same switches.

In her latest blog post, Taisey looks specifically at the 2930F 48 POE+ (JL256A) versus the 2930M 48 POE+ (JL322A). The twist? Are you a gamer? Think of the 2930F as Fortnite and the 2930M as PUBG.

 

Tags: Aruba, Fortnite, Switches, Switch, HPE, HP switch
Does the Cisco 4000 router series redefine the traditional role of routers?
April 10, 2018
Does the Cisco 4000 router series redefine the traditional role of routers?

Last month it was Catalyst 9000 switches, and this month its routers. Yes, my project engineering staff have had a surprising amount of inquiries regarding routers.

March 15, 2018
55 is Alive

Have you seen the buzz around the Cisco 8540 wireless controller? The 8540 controller is an impressive unit, featuring Cisco DNA and SD-ACCESS wireless - but with a price to match. Most customers in your shoes do not need DNA and SD-ACCESS wireless. In some cases, buyers don’t even know what this functionality is. If this is the case for you, there are alternative devices that won’t break the bank.

Tags: lifetime warranty, equal2new, Cisco wireless, Cisco 8540, Cisco 5508, Cisco
Requests for Cisco Catalyst 9300 are up ... what's the intent?
March 2, 2018
Requests for Cisco Catalyst 9300 are up ... what's the intent?

My project engineering staff has been getting more and more information requests for Cisco’s new line of Catalyst 9000 switches, especially the 9300 switch. That has me wondering why.

Is Cisco's Mobility Express right for you?
February 1, 2018
Is Cisco's Mobility Express right for you?

One of the hottest topics on the minds of our customers for 2018 continues to be their wireless infrastructure. As WLAN 802.11ac wave 2 devices becoming mainstream, Cisco has placed a stake in the ground claiming to be the “value leader.”

2700 vs 2800: Should You Stay or Should You Go?
December 20, 2017
2700 vs 2800: Should You Stay or Should You Go?

The Clash asked the question in their 80s classic, Should I stay or should I go? How often do we ask ourselves that same questions when it comes to wireless equipment? Upgrade? Stick it out? Let me ask you this, Clash vocalist Joe Strummer, if I should go then how far should that be? In Cisco wireless, we have options. N, AC, Waves, Antennae, Multigig. Which way is the right way?

Well that really depends on you. Rather than boil this down to AC wave 1 versus wave 2, let’s talk more about the Cisco 2702 versus the 2802. Certainly wave 1 and wave 2 come into the argument but let’s talk specs.

Tags: Cisco 2800, Cisco 2700, Cisco Switches, Switches, Cisco, Upgrade, The Clash
25 Things IT Pros Should Consider at Year-End
December 1, 2017
25 Things IT Pros Should Consider at Year-End

As the end of the year approaches, the IT professional has a lot to consider. There are lots of tasks and jobs to accomplish by year-end and even more to consider in the coming year. Then again, that’s why IT pros are the unsung heroes in many organizations.

It can be overwhelming to have so much to think about. Take a load off and let us do the heavy lifting for a little while.

With the year-end right around the corner, here is a list all IT pros should check twice.

Can Wave 2 handle the wireless tsunami heading toward us?
November 28, 2017
Can Wave 2 handle the wireless tsunami heading toward us?

There seems to be a shift in our industry from wireless N to AC as we have seen large leaps forward in bandwidth and client saturation handling. With the growth of wireless options going in the workplace, widespread connectivity continues to rise and wireless requirements are becoming greater and greater.

How come the power cord plug for my network appliance won't fit the outlet that I have?
November 16, 2017
How come the power cord plug for my network appliance won't fit the outlet that I have?

After agonizing and researching and fighting bouts of indecision, you finally decide to go through with the process of purchasing some new network equipment, maybe a Cisco 6509 chassis, or maybe even an APC UPS to protect your expensive network!

Joy and jublication set in as you received your shipment of equipment! You unpack it, you install it into your rack and then, the final step, you go to plug it into an available wall outlet – but wait...

Tags: network advice, networking equipment, Networking, Cisco 6509
November 2, 2017
Clear your mind of sticker shock

I had a customer ask for pricing on a high-end router recently. The sticker shock threw them into a panic. Have you ever been here? You’re looking for reliable network hardware equipment, but the price resembles your house payment. Now is the time to take a step back and evaluate what your true needs are.

Tags: Cisco routers, Cisco, buy network hardware, network hardware, networking
October 26, 2017
Stack to the Future

In general, there are three types of switching solutions: standalone, stacked, and chassis. As the middle child, I’m biased towards a stacked switching solution – my reasons may be skewed, but even within the stacking world there is stacking and then there is true stacking. One of the major benefits to all stacking is simplified management. Before stacking came along, you had to daisy chain multiple switches together and configure them separately by logging in with a different IP address one by one.

Tags: Cisco switches, stacked switch, chassis switch
October 17, 2017
The King is dead?! Heck, no!

Editor's note: This blog first appeared on the Network World website. It's part of Frank's SWITCH IT UP colum.People in the industry have been talking, tweeting and writing about the demise of the venerable Catalyst 6500 chassis family for years. 

But don’t worry, the King is not dead.

 

October 11, 2017
Multi-gig delivers the speed needed for BYOD, IoT, PoE, and more

HPE/Aruba’s 802.11AC Wave 2 access points offer extra features - multi-user MIMO and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) being some of the most notable, but also allows users to take advantage of the new IEEE 802.3bz standard for multi-gig Ethernet.

September 26, 2017
Insights from the Gartner IT Financial, Procurement & Asset Management Summit 2017

Our team had the opportunity to exhibit at last week’s Gartner IT Financial, Procurement & Asset Management Summit. The summit featured a very engaged audience – everyone there was looking to improve their technology strategies in some fashion. Here are several of the major recurring themes we saw addressed at the summit.

Tags: TPM, third-party maintenance, third-party maintenance, ITAD, IT asset disposition, Gartner
September 14, 2017
Stackables or Chassis on the Edge?

When considering adding switches to your edge, many people often assume stackables are the only way to go. However, there is another option - a chassis solution. We take the time every day to help recommend what may be best for anyone's unique network. In the Cisco world, you may be considering a member from the 3750 or 3850 family, but don’t forget the 6509E chassis is always an option.

Tags: Cisco 6509, Cisco 6500 Series, Cisco 6500
August 29, 2017
Is 802.11ax the "Next Big Thing" in Wireless?

Star Wars is a great movie. An instant classic. Only a few short years after the release of the original, The Empire Strikes Back took something great and made it even better. This isn't always the case with movie part two's (maybe because Empire is actually Episode V), but in the world of wireless sequels, this trend continues to ring true.

Tags: wireless networks, wireless networking, wireless, wireless AX, 802.11ax, wireless LANs, wireless AC
July 25, 2017
Powerful and Versatile and Dependable – Oh My!

For those of you that have purchased Cisco Catalyst 6500s, you know how powerful, versatile and dependable they are. But there’s yet another reason to be happy about your purchase; you don’t have to ditch an expensive chassis system when Cisco lists it as end of sale (EoS). Cisco has created a path forward to their 6807 chassis!

Tags: Cisco 6500 Series, Cisco 6500, Cisco
July 20, 2017
Building a Better HPE Network with Throughput and Capacity

When you compare throughput and routing/switching capacity within the HPE switch lines, making a decision on what to buy can become less about cramming as much as possible into your shrinking budget and more about designing a better network.

Tags: HP switch, HP chassis
July 6, 2017
CXtec: Helping customers exert their independence!

Independence is not something to be taken lightly. I think of independence as the ability to do what you wish, what you feel is best for you, as opposed to what outside forces want you to do. Working for CXtec, a leading provider in secondary market networking equipment, puts me in a unique position to help customers exert their independence. We call it Technology @ Your Pace®.

Tags: networking equipment, Networking, network hardware
June 28, 2017
Playing with Fire... Walls (And Not Getting Burned)

Just like dealing with fire, there are some important factors you’ll want to think about before you get into the business of protecting your network. If you don't, it could get out of control and all go up in flames.

Tags: VPN, firewalls, security