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What should I know to select a proper Switch?

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  • What should I know to select a proper Switch?

    Hi all,

    Could anybody please help me in this...
    I have to suggest a Cisco Switch to a customer. Well the customer didn't give us any requirement and I have to some how find out what they need. the thing is that I'm new in this area and I'm not sure what are the main things I should ask from the customer!

    I can think of 1. No of ports they need. 2. And speed. 3. If they need support for VOIP. 3. Or maybe about which layer's switch they need!?

    I appreciate any kind of information you can give me.

    Thanks in advance,
    Lad.

  • #2
    Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

    Just call the customer.
    Ask what he needs and what his goal is with the new switch and maybe what equipment they already have?
    Marcel
    Technical Consultant
    Netherlands
    http://www.phetios.com
    http://blog.nessus.nl

    MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
    "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

    "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
    "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

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    • #3
      Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

      ...and also the alocated buget
      Regards,
      Csaba Papp
      MCSA+messaging, MCSE, CCNA
      ...............................
      Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate
      .................................

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      • #4
        Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

        Hey thanks guys...

        Some times the costumers them self don't know what they need... what I was trying to do is to give them a clue that what they have to think about when it comes to switches... and unfortunately I also don't know much!

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        • #5
          Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

          The two biggest factors that I can think of are security and speed.

          You could ask them if they're interested in access restrictions in the future. Like having a public and private network so that vendors or potential customers (depending on what type of business this place is) could hook up to the network and have a sandbox environment. That needs 802.11x.

          Speed is probably the biggest factor. Do they need 100 or 1000Mbit? Will they ever need some kind of long lines (i.e. fiber optic) which means that the switch needs to accept GBICs. Will they have a high performance SAN of some kind (do they do graphics and / or video like an advertising agency or something)?

          Port density is also important. 24 or 28 ports?

          Is redundancy important? Multiple power supplies can be purchased.

          Most switches these days have pretty good features like spanning tree, VLANs, QoS, and some mutation of etherchannel.

          Does that spur your imagination?
          Wesley David
          LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
          -------------------------------
          Microsoft Certifications: MCSE 2003 | MCSA:Messaging 2003 | MCITP:EA, SA, EST | MCTS: a'plenty | MCDST
          Vendor Neutral Certifications: CWNA
          Blog: www.TheNubbyAdmin.com || Twitter: @Nonapeptide || GTalk, Reader and Google+: [email protected] || Skype: Wesley.Nonapeptide
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          • #6
            Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

            Originally posted by Nonapeptide View Post
            The two biggest factors that I can think of are security and speed.

            You could ask them ...

            Does that spur your imagination?

            Hey Nonapeptide... yes it does! thank you so much for explanations....

            Cheers!
            Lad.

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            • #7
              Re: What should I know to select a proper Switch?

              Also consider asking them if they need (or anticipate a need for) Power Over Ethernet (POE).

              Just POE Switches and you'll see what they are so you know a bit about them before asking. Can be really handy for security cameras and other equipment that hooks up to the LAN and needs a bit of power.
              Best wishes,
              PaulH.
              MCP:Server 2003; MCITP:Server 2008; MCTS: SBS2008

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