Co-authored by Siva Nittala, Switching Product Manager, Cisco

The lineup of Catalyst 9300 series switches includes two new additions which are built from the ground up for intent-based networking. The Catalyst 9300 1G fiber switches provide a seamless migration path from Catalyst 3850 Fiber with better price-to-value, avoiding cable upgrade expenses, for a reduction of total cost of ownership. These new models expand the Catalyst 9300 series to fiber to the desk and 1G fiber aggregation applications. Optimized for 1G wired access, the C9300L models are the fixed access replacement for the Catalyst 3650 series, with Fabric-in-a-Box capability that makes them ideal for business-critical branch deployments.

All these new switches offer the same benefits of higher availability, greater speed and capacity and more advanced security and programmability that are found in the rest of the Catalyst 9000 switch family.

Catalyst 9300 1G fiber: great for aggregation

By replacing your Catalyst 3850 switches with Catalyst 9300 1G fiber switches, you’ll gain many security benefits common to the rest of the Catalyst 9k family. This is important in a world where securing your network is ever more challenging because of increasing network complexity, increased scale of attacks, and greater sophistication of the methods used by attackers.

New security solutions you’ll be able to use include MACsec 256 link encryption and Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA). The Catalyst 9300 1G fiber switches also broaden the deployment of SD-Access. Now, Catalyst 9300 stacks can connect to extended nodes with the fiber interface.

Fiber to the Desktop is back with a bang

While running fiber to the desktop (FTTD) isn’t a common practice, given the traditionally high cost of installation for fiber cables, some network administrators find that it is the right solution for certain scenarios. These are situations in which high speed connectivity and greater throughput are demanded. In these cases, the Catalyst 9300 1G fiber 24- and 48-port switches are an excellent option to have at their disposal.

Here are some of the use cases for FTTD:

  • High bandwidth applications, like media and entertainment.
  • Extreme physical conditions, like manufacturing where operating temperatures and length of cable runs make copper less than ideal.
  • Low latency usage, such as financial trading desks
  • Security-sensitive installations, where FTTD can reduce risk of data leakage and disruption

Speaking of cost, it’s important to look at more than just the cost of copper cabling versus fiber optic cable. There’s also the wiring closet, with all of its requirements for conditioned uninterrupted power supplies, HVAC costs, data ground and just plain extra space. When setting up a completely new network, FTTD can actually be very competitive with copper because the higher bandwidth and longer cabling runs allow for more optimized layout of the network. The Catalyst 9300 1G fiber switches provide the lowest total cost of ownership of any solution currently in the market, since it is an integrated solution.

Catalyst 9300L for the business-critical branch

The other new addition to the Catalyst 9300 series is a full complement of fixed uplink models, designated as 9300L models. These are ideal for branch deployments that need business-critical level of security, reliability and automation. These switches provide a great balance of performance and cost, allowing stacking of up to 8 boxes and providing higher performance scale and more advanced features than were available on the Catalyst 3650 switches these are meant to refresh.

Software-Defined Access with a single box

With full SD-Access functionality, the Catalyst 9300L switches provide fabric-in-a-box capability letting you deploy a network fabric without need for a second box to act as controller. This gives you benefits such as simplified provisioning, seamless campus-wide roaming, and a consistent experience across wired and wireless domains.

New models, same advanced security and programmability

As more users bring more devices to connect to the network, and as more applications require more diverse access to the cloud, networks are becoming more complex to manage and keep secure. These are the challenges that we at Cisco are solving for with the features found on all the Catalyst 9000 family of switches.

The Catalyst 9300 1G fiber and Catalyst 9300L switches provide advanced functionality such as model-driven programmability, a guest shell for on-box Python scripting, and app hosting, expanding the tools you have for managing and monitoring your network. These switches also provide the ability to use the same advanced security features as the rest of the Catalyst 9300 series, such as MACsec 256 link encryption, Encrypted Traffic Analytics, Full flexible Netflow and Trustworthy Solutions.

25 more reasons to migrate from Catalyst 3k

Looking for more reasons to select the Catalyst 9300 switches instead of something from the Catalyst 3k line? From greater scale an performance, to more advanced security and higher levels of resiliency, here are 25 more reasons to choose Catalyst 9300.

Whether you are looking for a switch that can act as a layer2/layer3 switch, for either core enterprise or distribution, the Catalyst 9300 series has a lot to offer for campus access networks. Read more on Cisco.com/go/cat9300.


Bhavana Anklesaria

Product Manager

Enterprise Switching