Cisco enhances metro Ethernet gear

Cisco Systems this week announced enhancements to its metro Ethernet switching product line, which is anchored by the recently announced Catalyst 4500 line.

The enhancements include Layer 3 metro services on the Catalyst 3550 switch; Cisco IOS enhancements for IP video security and scalability; and ATM and Ethernet interworking capabilities for the 7600 series router and Catalyst 6500 switch.

Layer 3 Multi-protocol Label Switching VPN service capability on the Catalyst 3550 switches helps metro providers deliver intersite connectivity for businesses without the need to run individual fibers to each customer, Cisco says. Routing enhancements such as BGP and Multi VPN Routing and Forwarding-Customer Edge are designed to enable support of multiple VPN customers on a single switch in building basements.

IOS enhancements include a new set of IP multicast features designed to serve video and voice to the large number of subscribers encountered in the metro, Cisco says. These features include IGMP filtering for increased privacy of IP multicast and unicast video streams, and Multicast virtual LAN registration to securely connect individual subscribers with broadcast VLAN video streams.

The Ethernet-to-ATM Layer 2 service interworking capabilities for the 7600 router and Catalyst 6500 switch enable service providers to offering Ethernet connectivity while aggregating traditional WAN connectivity services in the same platform.

The Catalyst 4500 series switches combine 1+1 redundancy of supervisor cards and power supplies with redundant switching fabrics to help provide high-availability for metro aggregation and high-density access, Cisco says.

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