Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall

Tuesday 6 march 2012 2 06 /03 /Mar /2012 09:51

Transform your branch-office experience with the new Cisco Integrated Services Routers Generation 2 (ISR G2) Family, Cisco’s latest addition to the tremendously successful integrated services router portfolio. The Cisco ISR G2s are part of the Cisco Borderless Network Architecture that enables business innovation and growth across all remote sites. The next-generation architecture delivers a new workspace experience by meeting the performance requirements for the next generation of WAN and network services, enabling the cost-effective delivery of high-definition collaboration at the branch office and providing the secure transition to the next generation of cloud and virtualized network services. Designed for optimal service delivery on a single platform, the new Cisco ISR G2 routers give businesses greater power to deliver a superior customer experience and deploy services “on demand” as business needs dictate—while reducing overall operating costs.

 

What Problems Do Cisco ISR G2s Help Solve?

With the number of employees growing at the branch office, IT teams are challenged to securely and efficiently connect remote locations at minimal cost. The Cisco ISR G2 not only addresses critical branch-office challenges like the first generation, it also introduces revolutionary ways to make the remote office more productive, more collaborative, and more operationally efficient. These new innovations enable branch offices to:

Deliver next-generation WAN and network service requirements

Become more productive through increased videobased collaboration and rich-media services

Securely transition to cloud and virtualized network services

Minimize energy consumption and costs to support corporate sustainability

Enable small IT teams to scale services worldwide

 

Cisco ISR G2Positioning

The Cisco ISR G2 provides a highly secure and reliable platform for scalable multiservice integration at enterprise and commercial branch offices of all sizes and small-to-medium sized businesses (Figure 1). The excellent service delivery on a single platform, now up to 8x greater performance, offers the ultimate user experience with the architectural scalability and investment protection needed to minimize overall deployment costs.

 

Figure 1 Cisco Integrated Services Routers Generation 2

cisco-isr-g2.jpg

 

What’s new on Cisco ISR G2?

Table 1 compares the features of the first and second generations of Cisco Integrated Services Routers.

WhatsNew.JPg

 

Why Upgrade Your Existing Access Router to a Cisco ISR G2 Router?

The Cisco ISR G2 portfolio builds upon the market success of the first generation of integrated services routers with new enhancements that deliver greater value to your business with new enhancements for service virtualization, video-ready capabilities, and operational excellence. Our exciting new innovations deliver:

Video-ready branch office for a superior customer experience with new services that transform the branch-office workspace:

Media engines that enable business-grade video applications based on high-density video-ready DSPs that deliver the media net high-definition experience

Bandwidth-optimized and scalable video services, including media-rich video conferencing, video surveillance, video streaming, and digital signage

High-performance (up to 8x), nonstop branch office experience to meet your future WAN and services requirements

TelePresence capability to your midsize branch offices with T1/E1 links

Service virtualization to deliver highly effective business innovation that achieves unparalleled service:

Cloud extensibility and services virtualization for mission-critical application survivability to remote sites

Broadest services offering to all branch-office sites, including security, unified communications, WANoptimization, application integration, and customizable virtual services

A revolutionary “on-demand” services delivery model enabled by the innovative Cisco Services Ready Engine (SRE)

Operational excellence providing the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) with scalability, operational flexibility, and simplicity based on best-in-class service integration, innovative pay-as-you-grow model, and optimized energy efficiency:

Superior business flexibility for on-demand service delivery with minimal system upgrades

Increased branch-office uptime with enhanced availability features

Greater energy efficiency with slot-based controls to decrease costs and support sustainability

Simplified deployment with a single Cisco IOS Software image

Investment protection with support for most of the prior generation of integrated services router interfaces

 

Cisco Services for the Branch Office

Services from Cisco and our certified partners can help you transform the branch-office experience and accelerate business innovation and growth with Borderless Networks. We have the depth and breadth of expertise to create a clear, replicable, optimized branch office footprint across technologies that will help you:

Increase the accuracy, speed, and efficiency of deployment

Improve operational efficiency, save money, and mitigate risk

Continuously improve performance

 

Why Cisco?

Built on 25 years of innovation and product leadership along with broad market acceptance, the new generation of access routers continues to optimize service integration to transform the branch-office experience with the speed, scale, and flexibility to deliver tomorrow’s services transparently at a low cost of ownership. For more information, please visit: www.cisco.com/go/isrg2.

 

Table 2 compares the models of the Cisco ISR G2 portfolio.

cisco-isr-g2-comparison.jpg

More Cisco ISR G2 Files: Cisco ISR G2 Management Overview

By Cisco & Cisco Router, Network Switch - Posted in: Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall
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Wednesday 29 february 2012 3 29 /02 /Feb /2012 09:49

Ethernet Switch

A switch is something that is used to turn various electronic devices on or off. However, in computer networking, a switch is used to connect multiple computers with each other. Since it is an external device it becomes part of the hardware peripherals used in the operation of a computer system. This connection is done within an existing Local Area network (LAN) only and is identical to an Ethernet hub in terms of appearance except with more intelligence. These switches not only receive data packets, but also have the ability to inspect them before passing them on to the next computer. That is, they can figure out the source, the contents of the data, and identify the destination as well. As a result of this uniqueness, it sends the data to the relevant connected system only, thereby using less bandwidth at high performance rates.ethernet-switches-copy-1.jpg

 

Ethernet Switches and Crossover Cables

The wires in a crossover cable are “crossed” so that output signals from the transmitting device are properly sent as input signals to the receiving end. An Ethernet switch can be thought of as a device that makes temporary crossover cable connections between computers that want to communicate. Just like crossover cables, switches do not suffer from collision problems.

However, it should be noted that the actual cables used are “straight through.” The crossover function is done inside of the switch.

 

Since separate wires are used for sending and receiving, switches support operation in full duplex mode. This mode allows devices to send and receive data at the same time.

 

Advantages over Hubs

As mentioned above, switches are intelligent devices that can read the data packets that pass through them. By storing each host’s MAC address and its corresponding port in a table, switches ensure that bandwidth is not wasted by intelligently directing traffic. Hubs are dumb devices that do not do any processing.

 

Unlike hubs, switches are modern, fast, and support full duplex operation. In short, they are much better.

 

...To be continued...

 

By Cisco & Cisco Router, Network Switch - Posted in: Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall
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Monday 27 february 2012 1 27 /02 /Feb /2012 07:07

Conventional network security often focuses more on routers and blocking traffic from the outside. Switches are internal to the organization and designed to allow ease of connectivity, therefore only limited or no security measures are applied.

 

The following basic security features can be used to secure your switches/Cisco switches and network:

* Physically secure the device

Use secure passwords

* Enable SSH access

* Enable port security

* Disable http access

* Disable unused ports

* Disable Telnet

 

Let’s look at how to implement and configure some of the above mentioned switch security features.

Cisco-Switch-Port-Security----How-to-Configure-Swit-copy-1.jpg


 

1. How to Configure the privileged EXEC password.  

Use the enable secret command to set the password. For this activity, set the password to orbit.

SW1#configure terminal

SW1(config)#enable secret orbit

SW1(config)#

 

2. How to Configure virtual terminal (Telnet) and console passwords and require users to login.

A password should be required to access the console line.  Even the basic user EXEC mode can provide significant information to a malicious user. In addition, the VTY lines must have a password before users can access the switch remotely.

Use the following commands to secure the console and telnet:

SW1(config)#line console 0

SW1(config-line)#password cisco

SW1(config-line)#login

SW1(config-line)#line vty 0 15

SW1(config-line)#password cisco

SW1(config-line)#login

SW1(config-line)#exit

SW1(config)#

 

3. How to Configure password encryption.

At this stage, the privileged EXEC password is already encrypted. To encrypt the line passwords that you just configured, enter the service password-encryption command in global configuration mode.

SW1(config)#service password-encryption

SW1(config)#

 

4. How to Configure and test the MOTD banner.

Configure the message-of-the-day (MOTD) using Authorized Access Only as the text. Follow these guidelines:

i. The banner text is case sensitive. Make sure you do not add any spaces before or after the banner text.

 

ii. Use a delimiting character before and after the banner text to indicate where the text begins and ends. The delimiting character used in the example below is %, but you can use any character that is not used in the banner text.

 

iii. After you have configured the MOTD, log out of the switch to verify that the banner displays when you log back in.

 

SW1(config)#banner motd %Authorized Access Only%

SW1(config)#end

SW1#exit

 

5. How to Configure Port Security

Enter interface configuration mode for FastEthernet 0/11 and enable port security.

Before any other port security commands can be configured on the interface, port security must be enabled.

SW1(config-if)#interface fa0/11

SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security

* Notice that you do not have to exit back to global configuration mode before entering interface configuration mode for fa0/11.

 

6. How to configure the maximum number of MAC addresses.

To configure the port to learn only one MAC address, set the maximum to 1:

SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security maximum 1

 

7. How to configure the port to add the MAC address to the running configuration.

The MAC address learned on the port can be added to (“stuck” to) the running configuration for that port.

SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security mac-address sticky 

 

8. How to Configure the port to automatically shut down if port security is violated.

If you do not configure the following command, SW1 only logs the violation in the port security statistics but does not shut down the port.

SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security violation shutdown

Use the show-mac-address- table command to confirm that SW1 has learned the MAC address for the intended devices, in this case PC1.

SW1#show mac-address-table

Mac Address Table

-------------------------------------------

Vlan Mac Address Type Ports

---- ----------- -------- -----

20 0060.5c4b.cd22 STATIC Fa0/11

 

You can use the show port-security interface fa0/11 command to also verify a security violation with the command.

SW1#show port-security interface fa0/11

 

Port Security : Enabled

Port Status : Secure-shutdown

Violation Mode : Shutdown

Aging Time : 0 mins

Aging Type : Absolute

SecureStatic Address Aging : Disabled

Maximum MAC Addresses : 1

Total MAC Addresses : 1

Configured MAC Addresses : 1

Sticky MAC Addresses : 0

Last Source Address:Vlan : 00E0.F7B0.086E:20

Security Violation Count : 1

 

9. How to Secure Unused Ports

Disabling unused switch ports a simple method many network administrators use to help secure their network from unauthorized access. Disabling an unused port stops traffic from flowing through the port(s)

Step 1: Disable interface Fa0/10 on SW1.

Enter interface configuration mode for FastEthernet 0/17 and shut down the port.

SW1(config)#interface fa0/10

SW1(config-if)#shutdown

 

Step 2: Disable interfaces Fa0/1 to Fa0/24 on SW1

SW1(config)#interface range fa0/1-24

SW1(config-if)#shutdown

 

More Cisco switches' tutorials: http://blog.router-switch.com/category/reviews/cisco-switches/

By Cisco & Cisco Router, Network Switch - Posted in: Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall
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Friday 3 february 2012 5 03 /02 /Feb /2012 07:46

Cisco unveiled significant extensions to both of its major switching lines with the addition of 40/100G Ethernet capabilities.

  Cisco-Catalyst-Series-copy-1.jpg

The enhancements are intended to address the growth of 10G Ethernet in data centers, which Dell’Oro Group forecasts will be the major revenue contributor to Ethernet switching in the next five years. Growth in 10G necessitates larger pipes between switches to aggregate those links and forward traffic at faster rates to alleviate congestion and keep network operations running optimally, especially with trends like cloud, video and mobility sending more packets in all different directions.

 

Cisco is adding 40G Ethernet to its Catalyst 6500 switching line, and 40/100G Ethernet to its Nexus 7000 switch to aggregate 40G at the core, and interconnect data centers to service providers.

 

Cisco also rolled out two fixed configuration switches for high-density 10G Ethernet in campus aggregation and data center top-of-rack deployments.

 

And in an effort to bring legacy infrastructures into the virtual world, Cisco unveiled network virtualization capabilities for its Catalyst 6500, 4500 and ASR 1000 product lines, as well as a new data center appliance for scalable virtual services.

 

Cisco is offering two modules for the Nexus 7000: a two-port 100G Ethernet board, which would provide the switch with up to 32 non-blocking 100G Ethernet ports; and a six-port 40G Ethernet module which would provide up to 96 non-blocking 40G ports for the switch.

 

Of the major switching vendors, only Brocade is offering 100G Ethernet on a core platform -- its MLX series switching routers. Several other vendors are already offering 40G fixed, modular and uplink ports on their switches.

 

The technology has yet to go gangbusters though.

Notes: More News of Cisco Updates Its High-end Switches

 

"We see sporadic implementation" of 40/100G Ethernet, says Jon Oltsik, an analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group. "Cisco’s one of the first big players to go mainstream with it. It’s good for marketing – they’ll be perceived as a high-performance vendor."

 

Cisco also unveiled the Nexus 3064-X, which had been expected. The 3064-X is aimed at low latency financial services environments and features 48 1/10G Ethernet ports plus four 40G links.
And the company’s Nexus 1000V virtual switch, which resides on blade servers like the Cisco Unified Computing System, now supports the Virtual Extensible LAN (VXLAN) workload scaling capability Cisco announced last summer.

 

VXLAN is also new in Cisco’s Nexus 1010 new virtual services appliance. The VXLAN version is called the Nexus 1010-X and it is a dedicated hardware platform for provisioning and scaling network services in virtualized environments, like data centers and clouds.

 

For the campus environment and the Catalyst line, Cisco unveiled the Catalyst 6900 Series 40 Gigabit Ethernet Interface Module for the flagship Catalyst 6500 switch. It allows the switch to support up to 44 40G ports.

 

Cisco also rolled out the Catalyst 4500-X, a fixed aggregation switch targeted at space-constrained campus networks. It supports up to 40 10G Ethernet ports and 1.6Tbps of switching capacity through Cisco’s Virtual Switching System redundancy technique. It also includes support for Medianet video and NetFlow analysis services.

 

Lastly, Cisco unveiled software for its campus switches and routers designed to simplify network virtualization. Cisco Easy Virtual Network (EVN) runs on the Catalyst 6500 and 4500 switches, and ASR 1000 edge router, and allows operators to more easily create separate logical networks on a single physical infrastructure.

 

And in the data center, Cisco added features to the Nexus NX-OS operating system such as PowerOn Auto-Provisioning and Python scripting to customize network behavior based on events as they happen. These features are now available on Nexus 3000 series platforms, and planned for the Nexus 2000 and 5000 switches.

 

The 40/100G modules for the Nexus 7000 will be available in the second quarter. The 6900 module for the Catalyst 6500 will be available in April. The Nexus 3064-X will be available in March.                         

---Original News from Networkworld.com

By Cisco & Cisco Router, Network Switch - Posted in: Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall
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Monday 30 january 2012 1 30 /01 /Jan /2012 09:00

During the early days of networking, it was difficult to implement VLANs across networks. Each VLAN was manually configured on each network switch. Managing a large switched network used to be a complicated tasks, VLAN trunking methods has helped to ease this problem.

 

 VLAN Trunking Protocol (VTP) is a Cisco Proprietary which basic aim is to manage all configured VLANs across a switched network.  VTP helps to propagate and maintain VLAN configurations consistency to other switches on the network.

 

VTP is a messaging protocol that uses layer 2 trunk frames to add, delete and rename VLANs on a single domain. It helps to centralize changes which are sent to other switches on the network.

 

A switch had to be configured in the role of a VTP server to manage your VLAN configuration on your network. The sever(s) will share VLAN information with other switches on the network which must use the same domain name.

 

VTP learns only normal-range VLANs (VLAN IDs 1 to 1005).

The primary role of VTP is to maintain VLAN configuration consistency across a network administration domain.

 

VTP stores VLAN configurations in the VLAN database called vlan.dat.

After a trunk is established between switches, VTP advertisement is exchanged between the switches. Both the server switch and client exchange and monitor advertisement from one another to ensure each has an accurate record of VLAN information. VTP advertisement will not be exchanged if the trunk between the switches is inactive.

 

 

In the diagram above, a trunk link is configured between switch S1, - VTP Server, S2 and S3 - VTP client. After a trunk is established between the switches, VTP summary advertisement is exchanged among the switches.

 

More Notes:

VTP Configuration Guidelines 

Follow these steps to configure a Cisco Catalyst switch to use VTP successfully:

 

VTP Server Switches 

i. Before you begin configuration, ensure that all of the switches are set to their default settings.

 

ii. Always reset the configuration revision number before installing a previously configured switch into a VTP domain. Not resetting the configuration revision number allows for potential disruption in the VLAN configuration across the rest of the switches in the VTP domain.

iii. Configure at least two VTP server switches in your network. Because only server switches can create, delete, and modify VLANs, you should make sure that you have one backup VTP server in case the primary VTP server becomes disabled. If all the switches in the network are configured in VTP client mode, you cannot create new VLANs on the network.

 

iv. Configure a VTP domain on the VTP server. Configuring the VTP domain on the first switch enables VTP to start advertising VLAN information. Other switches connected through trunk links receive the VTP domain information automatically through VTP advertisements.

 

v. If there is an existing VTP domain, make sure that you match the name exactly. VTP domain names are case-sensitive.

 

vi. If you are configuring a VTP password, ensure that the same password is set on all switches in the domain that need to be able to exchange VTP information. Switches without a password or with the wrong password reject VTP advertisements.

 

vii. Ensure that all switches are configured to use the same VTP protocol version. VTP version 1 is not compatible with VTP version 2. By default, Cisco Catalyst 2960 switches run version 1 but are capable of running version 2. When the VTP version is set to version 2, all version 2 capable switches in the domain auto configure to use version 2 through the VTP announcement process. Any version 1-only switches cannot participate in the VTP domain after that point.

 

viii. Create the VLAN after you have enabled VTP on the VTP server. VLANs created before you enable VTP are removed. Always ensure that trunk ports are configured to interconnect switches in a VTP domain. VTP information is only exchanged on trunk ports.

 

VTP Client Switches 

i. As on the VTP server switch, confirm that the default settings are present.

ii. Configure VTP client mode. Recall that the switch is not in VTP client mode by default. You have to configure this mode.

iii. Configure trunks. VTP works over trunk links.

iv. Connect to a VTP server. When you connect to a VTP server or another VTP-enabled switch, it takes a few moments for the various advertisements to make their way back and forth to the VTP server.

v. Verify VTP status. Before you begin configuring the access ports, confirm that the revision mode and number of VLANs have been updated.

vi. Configure access ports. When a switch is in VTP client mode, you cannot add new VLANs. You can only assign access ports to existing VLANs.

 

By Cisco & Cisco Router, Network Switch - Posted in: Cisco Switches, Cisco Firewall
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