February 20, 2017
How to Earn Money Like a Jawa

It’s a challenge every organization runs into at one point or another: you’re finally upgrading your networking gear, but it leaves you with a rag-tag collection of old routers, switches and phone systems. 

February 8, 2017
What the Watt? PoE, PoE+ and now PoE++

Power over Ethernet, or PoE, is the ability to pass both power and data over twisted pair Ethernet cabling. The first PoE standard - 802.3af - was introduced in 2003 and was quickly adopted all over networks because of its usefulness.

January 30, 2017
Choosing the Right Cisco Router for Your Business

As a dedicated IT specialist, you’re constantly wearing a number of different hats. Sometimes it’s a fireman helmet, putting out fires across the network. Other times it’s a headset, helping C-level leaders stage company events. Or it’s a doctor’s reflecting mirror, performing surgery to keep business humming along. A popular choice is the thinking cap, as you work to develop your company’s IT infrastructure and strategies going forward.

January 20, 2017
The Pros and Cons of Buying Used Cisco Products vs. New Ones

While buying new is certainly an option, purchasing pre-owned apparel can save you some serious money. This doesn’t just apply to designer clothing—it can apply to that expensive networking equipment you have your eye on too.

Tags: used cisco, used network hardware
January 11, 2017
STOP! Before you upgrade to the latest and greatest, do you really need it?

When it comes to purchasing networking equipment, you will find the OEM always pushing the latest and greatest – whether you need it or not. More than often, most organizations end up paying for features they don’t need or use. Knowing your options during the buying process is imperative to saving money and optimizing budget spend. Now more than ever, IT pros are leveraging the secondary market to reap its many budget benefits.

Tags: third-party maintenance, hardware maintenance, Cisco 2960S, Cisco switches
December 28, 2016
Push Start Your Network: How To Choose the Right Switch for Your Organization and Avoid Buyer's Remorse

There are a lot of purchases we make in life that lead to buyer’s remorse. Taking the time to do the proper research and weigh out all of your options should always be first priority. It’s crucial that you consider what features best support your organization’s unique needs--depending on its size and speed specifications.

December 22, 2016
Don't Worry, -B Happy

2016 has had its fair share of news, both good and terrible (Gene Wilder, David Bowie, Prince, Alan Rickman? All that on top of the NES Classic shortage?! Come on 2016!). Amongst all of the major pop culture events, some of the more obscure headlines went largely unnoticed except by the more tech savvy. One of those was the FCC regulation change on 5 Ghz wireless radios (US only).

Tags: Cisco wireless, wireless networks, wireless networking, wireless
December 19, 2016
To Gig or Not to Gig

Burger King or McDonald’s, Pepsi or Coke, Kirk or Picard? Choices are part of life. Like anything else, your network also involves a lot of choices. Speed in particular is a hot button topic. With all of the increases to 40G, 100G, and beyond, it can be difficult to decide which speed is the best option for your organization.

December 7, 2016
The ABCs of UPS

“Just quote me a UPS.”

All too often this is what we hear when we ask people about power protection. Unfortunately, it just isn’t that easy, although we all wish it was.

Tags: APC, ups
November 28, 2016
5 factors to consider when deciding between the Cisco Catalyst 6500 and 6800 Series

Are you trying to decide between the Cisco Catalyst 6500 and 6800 chassis systems? There are many factors to consider, but don’t go down the rabbit hole and get lost in minutiae. Here are the major factors to consider up front.

Tags: Cisco, Cisco 6500, Cisco Chassis, Cisco 6500 Series, Cisco 6800 Series
November 17, 2016
Not all compatibles are created equal

In today’s day and age, more and more businesses are using compatible optics in their networks. The reason is simple and easy to justify – the cost savings are tremendous.

Tags: Cisco compatible SFPs, compatible optics, compatible transceivers, compatible GBICs, compatible SFPs
November 3, 2016
Top 3 Cool Features of Juniper

All network hardware manufacturers have their pros (and cons) that set them apart from their competition. Understanding these differences will help guide you to make smart decisions on how to justify your technology investments. If you’re considering Juniper hardware for your network, check out these three really cool features.

Tags: Juniper, Juniper Networks, network hardware, Networking, networking equipment
October 28, 2016
Building the Perfect Maintenance Monster

In the Halloween season, we’re reminded of history’s great ghouls, goblins and monsters. And with the way our minds work here at CXtec, we then think of how these monsters would look in the technology world. In that spirit (pun intended), we’d like to weave a tale for you so horrifying, so absolutely scarrific, that you won’t sleep for weeks!

October 25, 2016
E! True Hollywood Story: Bob the Switch

Meet Bob – he's an equal2new® switch. Bob started life in a fancy financial institution, processing thousands of transactions every day. But one day, things changed for Bob. He was sold to CXtec and he began a new adventure!

Tags: network hardware, switches, equal2new, Networking, networking equipment, refurbishing
October 11, 2016
Does the "R" Stand for "Required" in the HP 5400R Chassis?

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) made an announcement in September 2015 that they would end-of-sale the HP 5400 zl Switch Series on December 31, 2015. At the time of the announcement, HPE encouraged its customers to migrate to the HP 5400R zl2 Switch Series chassis.

Tags: HP switch, HP chassis, HP 5400R, HP 5400 zl, HP 5400R zl2
June 24, 2016
A Love Letter Honoring the Cisco Catalyst 6509-E

Some people enjoy fine wines, and some are connoisseurs of artwork or antiques. And that’s all well and good. But here at CXtec, every now and again we like to proclaim our admiration for certain pieces of technology. Yes, network technology is what captures our hearts. In this edition, we’re extolling the virtues of the Cisco Catalyst 6509-E chassis solution.

Tags: Cisco Catalyst, Catalyst 6500, Cisco 6500, Cisco Catalyst 6509, Cisco 6509, Networking, networking equipment
June 16, 2016
Is the Cisco 6500 Series invincible?

We posed this question in a recent article on Network World. It certainly is a subject matter that many have been discussing recently. The answer may not be entirely clear, but one thing seems to be certain: the 6500 Series is going strong and shows very few signs of going away any time soon.

May 5, 2016
What is Third-Party Maintenance (TPM)?

Third-party maintenance (TPM) programs are hardware support solutions provided by vendors independent of the OEM. TPM is a subject matter that is garnering a great deal of attention in today’s climate of discovering creative ways to extend technology budgets. TPM offerings are essential in a hybrid support model – which entails using a mix of OEM support, TPM and sparing strategies where each is appropriate.

Tags: third-party maintenance, hybrid support, TPM
March 25, 2016
Enterprise Connect 2016 - Don't Forget the Hardware That Powers the Cloud

The CXtec team explored the Enterprise Connect 2016 conference in Orlando, Florida on March 7-10. Here is a recap of our adventures!

March 17, 2016
Network Hardware Quality: It's Not About Luck

Typically, around this time of year we hear luck being tossed around playfully as "The luck of the Irish" or the lucky leprechaun with his pot of gold. In reality, luck doesn't always have a happy ending.