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Fiber. Great In Your Diet. Costly In Your Data Center.

Guest Blog by Pat Chou, TMG Product Manager

Pat ChouSince the introduction of the Cisco’s 40G QSFP BiDi (Quad Small Form-Factor Pluggable Bidirectional module), we’ve seen phenomenal growth and adoption. I guess people do see the benefit.

What’s that? You haven’t heard?

…Ok, let’s say you’re in charge of a data center and your boss reminds you that streaming video and IoT devices are all the rage and if you don’t keep up with bandwidth demand, you’re toast. You have 10G links that use 10G SFP+ SR transceivers at the aggregation layer. You upgrade your switches or linecards to ones that have 40G QSFP ports like the Nexus series switches. Read More »

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The Next Wave of Innovation: Cisco UCS Fall Launch Sept 4th

In 2009, the course of data center technology changed forever with the introduction of a groundbreaking architecture designed for IT innovation and business acceleration.  With the Unified Computing System, Cisco answered the needs of customers embarking on the industry transition to data center virtualization and cloud.   This innovation led Cisco to becoming #1 blade server in Americas in 5 short years.

On September 4th, Cisco will unveil the next wave of Unified Computing innovation to meet the needs of the applications powering The Internet of Everything. As more users seek information in new ways, and as organizations use deeper intelligence to make faster decisions, IT must think differently about data center infrastructure.  To meet the needs of customers the power of the data center needs to be everywhere.

Please join us virtually to listen to an exciting group of technology leaders, including Padmasree Warrior, Cisco’s Chief Technology and Strategy Officer, as Cisco delivers a grand slam of innovation.  See the unveiling of exciting new systems that are optimized to bring the power of unified computing to applications at every scale. It is the broadest, most powerful array of new computing solutions since Cisco Unified Computing System (#CiscoUCS) first shattered industry convention in 2009.

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Learn how Cisco has the right technology and partnerships to help you power data-intensive analytics, applications at the edge, and the next generation of scale-out workloads.

UCS Launch Agenda

Your registration entitles you to view the sessions below:

Keynote Address & UCS Innovation Product Announcements
Featuring Padmasree Warrior

Customer & Technology Solutions Panel

  • Data-intensive Analytics in the Internet of Everything (Hosted by Padmasree Warrior, Cisco)
  • Next Generation Architecture for Extreme Scale-Out (Hosted by Matt Eastwood, IDC)

Click Here to REGISTER

Event Summary

  • Event type: Online Event
  • September 4, 2014
  • 7:30 AM PDT
  • 10:30 AM EDT
  • Opening Session: 60 minutes
  • Panel Discussions: 120 minutes

Looking for real time updates? Follow us at @CiscoDC and use #UCSGrandSlam to let us know your thoughts.

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A Simple Update To Our Cisco.com Menus

MM-Mouseover Bar

Did you notice the recent change to the menus on Cisco.com?  We call them “megamenus” — those convenient lists that fly down when you mouse over the masthead bar on any page on Cisco.com. We recently updated the “Products & Services” megamenu on the site to make it more readable and simplify navigation.

Here’s the new improved Products megamenu:

MM-New-April2014

For comparison, the here’s previous version:

MM-previous-March2014

What We Did

Do you notice what’s changed?

  • We reduced the length of the list of product categories so that it’s more readable.
  • We updated the layout so there’s less back-and-forth scanning.
  • We made Solutions and Services a bit more visible.
  • We put Cisco Validated Designs in a more obvious place.
  • We reordered some other things here and there to help us understand traffic patterns.

We think this is a nice simplification for our site-wide mega menus. And, of course, you can still find the full list of all products via the “All Products” list.

Enjoy!

(And, as always, if you have feedback, please send us a note here or at the [+]Feedback link that’s at the bottom of every page.)

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“Wow, I had no idea Cisco had these products”

As the product owner, one comment I get most of all is “Wow, I had no idea Cisco had these products“. This is the case even though we ship well over 20 million switch ports delivering hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue per year in this portfolio – to customers in all geographies, markets, verticals, and customer types.

Which products are we talking about? It’s the Cisco SMB portfolio.

See what independent testing agency, Miercom, found when they compared Cisco 300 Series Switches (SG300) to other switches in the market from competitors – Miercom lab test report.

Cisco was top performer in the test in Performance, Energy Efficiency, Usability, Capacity/Scale, Feature/functionality, and was the most Economical. For further dialog around this report, see the following link for more details: Competitive dialog on the Miercom test report.

Almost identical results were found when comparing the Cisco 500 Series Switches (SG500) to other Stackable switches in the market from competitors – Results from Stackable Switch Lab Test Report.

 “We were impressed with the comprehensive set of features, performance, overall power efficiency, and ease-of-use of the Cisco switches”

– Rob Smithers, CEO, Miercom (Miercom report: DR120119C)

Over this last year, here’s a small sampling of additional features Cisco has added to the 300 Series portfolio in addition to what has been tested in the Miercom lab (a free software download for customers, I might add):

  • Web-based Authentication – Provides network admission control through a web browser to any host devices and operating systems
  • IPv6 First Hop Security – Protection against man-in-the-middle attack, malicious or rogue devices, and IP address theft
    • RA Guard
    • ND Inspection
    • DHCPv6 Guard
    • Neighbor Binding Integrity
  • UDLD – detect unidirectional links caused by incorrect wiring or cable/port faults to prevent forwarding loops and black-holing of traffic in switched networks.
  • Time-based POE – time-based shutdown of ports or POE for operational cost savings

Here’s a list 100+ intelligent features many/most of which are not present in the corresponding competitive products. Read it and decide for yourself: Detailed feature differentiators post.

 So more features means it costs more, right? Nope. These Cisco switches are actually just as affordable—and in many/most cases, even more affordable — than Competitive switches. See for yourself. Here’s a few examples of comparable products you can look up:

  • Cisco SG300-28 versus HP 2530-24G (J9776A) – $513 versus $724
  • Cisco SG300-52 versus HP 2530-48G (J9775A) – $910 versus $1,129
  • Cisco SG300-28PP versus HP 2530-24G-POE+ (J9773A) – $876 versus $1,218
  • Cisco SG300-52P versus HP 2530-48G-POE+ (J9772A)- $1,232 versus $2,324

(Prices collected on CDW Website on 2/20/2014) 

300 Series Family MR

 

But don’t stop there. Have a look at the features and pricing for rest of the Cisco Small Business portfolio. You will see very similar results in other parts of the portfolio as well (For example, compare Cisco SF500 switches against HP 2620 series). By the way, these Cisco switches come with a Limited Lifetime Warranty, which includes next business day (NBD) advanced replacement as part of the product – no need to purchase a separate Service contract to get this. We can only do this since we truly stand behind these products.

“Cisco has raised the bar for this product category”

Kevin Tolly, founder, The Tolly Group (See Link)

Bet you didn’t know many of these things as well. Awareness is the biggest problem for this portfolio. So, let’s change this to “Did you know Cisco had these products?”.

 

 

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Cisco Product Quick Reference Guide

The 2013 Cisco Product Quick Reference Guide is now shipping, and you can order it right now on Cisco.com.

The 2013 guide provides an overview of the many Cisco products, services, and solutions for every part of your business. It’s all you need in one portable guide:  An easy-to-use reference that includes chapters on routing, switching, wireless, collaboration, security, data center, video and broadband cable, optical networking, network management, and much more.  Time-saving features include specifications, part numbers, and ordering information.

You can purchase your hard copy now at cisco.com/go/guide, and a super-convenient mobile app is coming soon.

 

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